Green Building News

Energy Demand for Space Cooling Surges

Posted on June 15, 2018 by Scott Gibson

Today, most of the world's air conditioners are concentrated in a handful of affluent countries, but a sharp increase in demand will triple the amount of energy used for space cooling by 2050 and require new generating capacity equal to what's produced in the U.S., Japan, and the European Union today.

Researchers Develop New ‘Super Window’

Posted on June 13, 2018 by Scott Gibson

Researchers at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) have developed a new type of triple glazingWhen referring to windows or doors, the transparent or translucent layer that transmits light. High-performance glazing may include multiple layers of glass or plastic, low-e coatings, and low-conductivity gas fill. for windows that is about the same thickness and weight as a standard low-eLow-emissivity coating. Very thin metallic coating on glass or plastic window glazing that permits most of the sun’s short-wave (light) radiation to enter, while blocking up to 90% of the long-wave (heat) radiation. Low-e coatings boost a window’s R-value and reduce its U-factor. double-glazed window but comes with twice the insulating value.

A Glimmer of Hope for Connecticut Homeowners With Crumbling Foundations

Posted on June 8, 2018 by Scott Gibson

Thousands of Connecticut residents whose homes are threatened by failing concrete foundations got some encouragement this week with the visit of U.S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson, who expressed hope that federal assistance might be possible.

As many as 34,000 homes in eastern and north central Connecticut could be at risk because aggregate used in the concrete contained a pyrrhotite, a mineral that in time causes the concrete to crack and degrade. Homeowners face bills of as much as $200,000 to repair the damage, and until now help has been slow in coming.

Twice-Flooded City Ponders Another Rebuild

Posted on June 5, 2018 by Scott Gibson

Last month's flooding of the historic downtown in Ellicott City, Maryland, sent a torrent of brown water down Main Street, erasing millions of dollars in reconstruction carried out after a similar incident just two years ago.

Denver Is Revising Its Green Roof Rules

Posted on May 31, 2018 by Scott Gibson

A sweeping plan passed by Denver voters last fall to require green roofs on large buildings is headed for a rewrite.

The Denver Post reports that a task force representing a variety of city interests has proposed a number of changes in the citizen initiative that would allow more flexibility and lower costs.

Building Errors Were Behind Grenfell Tragedy

Posted on May 29, 2018 by Scott Gibson

Botched details in a two-year refurbishment of a London high-rise turned what had been a safe concrete tower into a "tinderbox" that contributed to the deaths of 72 tenants, a British newspaper reports.

Construction Jobs Continue to Go Unfilled

Posted on May 24, 2018 by Scott Gibson

Thousands of well-paying construction jobs remain unfilled even as many high school students continue to be shepherded into four-year university programs that take longer than expected to complete and leave them deep in debt, a new report finds.

A Banned Threat to the Ozone Reappears

Posted on May 21, 2018 by Scott Gibson

Scientists have discovered that an industrial chemical once widely used as a blowing agent in foam insulation may be back in secret production, years after it was phased out as part of the 1987 Montreal Protocol.

Energy Demand Falls in New England Forecast

Posted on May 16, 2018 by Scott Gibson

A combination of energy-efficiency measures and behind-the-meter solar will reduce both overall demand for grid electricity and peak demand over the next decade, a new report from the region's grid manager says.

A New Guide for Net Zero Builders

Posted on May 15, 2018 by Scott Gibson

California's steady move toward net-zero energyProducing as much energy on an annual basis as one consumes on site, usually with renewable energy sources such as photovoltaics or small-scale wind turbines. construction has prompted the publication of a new guide for architects called the Zero Net Energy Primer.

Written by Ann V. Edminster, an architect (and a member of the advisory team), the ZNE Primer was published by the American Institute of Architects, California Council and financed by Pacific Gas & Electric. It comes against a backdrop of increasingly stringent requirements in Title 24, the state's efficiency code for buildings.

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