Green Building News

Study Finds Solar Panels Add Value to Houses

Posted on January 23, 2015 by Scott Gibson

Researchers ledLight-emitting diode. Illumination technology that produces light by running electrical current through a semiconductor diode. LED lamps are much longer lasting and much more energy efficient than incandescent lamps; unlike fluorescent lamps, LED lamps do not contain mercury and can be readily dimmed. by the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory say that home purchasers are willing to pay more for a house that come with a photovoltaic(PV) Generation of electricity directly from sunlight. A photovoltaic cell has no moving parts; electrons are energized by sunlight and result in current flow. (PVPhotovoltaics. Generation of electricity directly from sunlight. A photovoltaic (PV) cell has no moving parts; electrons are energized by sunlight and result in current flow.) system.

In what was billed as the most comprehensive study to date, the report, Selling Into the Sun, found that buyers would pay an average of $4 per installed watt, or $15,000, for an average-sized system of about 3.6 kilowatts in capacity.

Duties on Chinese Solar Panels May be Cut

Posted on January 22, 2015 by Scott Gibson

A Department of Commerce review of steep import duties imposed on photovoltaic(PV) Generation of electricity directly from sunlight. A photovoltaic cell has no moving parts; electrons are energized by sunlight and result in current flow. (PVPhotovoltaics. Generation of electricity directly from sunlight. A photovoltaic (PV) cell has no moving parts; electrons are energized by sunlight and result in current flow.) panels made in China may result in sharply lower tariffs, but U.S. consumers aren't likely to see much benefit, Bloomberg reports.

The International Trade Administration, part of the Commerce Department, suggested in a preliminary report on Jan. 2 that the 2012 anti-dumping and countervailing duties should be reduced from a combined 31 percent to 18 percent, Bloomberg said.

House Members Ask for More Scrutiny of Solar Leases

Posted on January 22, 2015 by Scott Gibson

More than a dozen members of the House of Representatives have asked two federal agencies to look into claims that solar leases are being oversold to consumers, according to published reports.

Electric Vehicles Hit a Pothole in California

Posted on January 21, 2015 by Scott Gibson

Some electric vehicle owners in California think they've been sideswiped by changes to a utility rate plan that helped them pay for their photovoltaic(PV) Generation of electricity directly from sunlight. A photovoltaic cell has no moving parts; electrons are energized by sunlight and result in current flow. (PVPhotovoltaics. Generation of electricity directly from sunlight. A photovoltaic (PV) cell has no moving parts; electrons are energized by sunlight and result in current flow.) systems.

Flir Updates Thermal Imager

Posted on January 20, 2015 by Scott Gibson

The Oregon company that began selling an inexpensive thermal imager for an iPhone last year has announced an upgraded and more versatile model that will be available later in the year.

Flir introduced the new model of the Flir One at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Unlike the original, different versions of this one will work with both Apple and Android devices. It's scheduled to go on sale later this year at a price that has yet to be announced.

California Governor Ups Renewables Commitment

Posted on January 20, 2015 by Scott Gibson

Already committed to producing 33 percent of its energy from renewable sources by 2020, California's governor announced a new goal of 50 percent renewable power by the year 2030.

Governor Jerry Brown said during his inaugural address that the new target was "exciting" and "bold" and essential in averting potentially catastrophic climate changes, but he didn't offer any specifics on how it might be accomplished, The Los Angeles Times reported.

Government Ups the Energy Star Ante

Posted on January 17, 2015 by Scott Gibson

A market share of 5 percent may not sound like a lot, but to Sam Rashkin, getting the Department of Energy's "Zero Energy Ready Home" label on that many houses each year could be the tipping point for high-efficiency building in the U.S.

Rashkin, chief architect in the Building Technologies Office of DOEUnited States Department of Energy.'s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, says the Zero Energy Ready Home (ZER) program is now entering its third year with improved prospects of turning small numbers into much bigger ones.

Study: Green Building Codes Don’t Save Energy

Posted on January 15, 2015 by Scott Gibson

Building codes that require energy efficient features haven't done anything to lower energy consumption in California despite adding thousands of dollars to the purchase price of a new house, according to a new report.

In a paper published by the National Bureau of Economic Research, Arik Levinson said that energy codes enacted in California in 1978 were supposed to reduce energy consumption by 80 percent.

EPA Issues Radon Reminder

Posted on January 14, 2015 by Scott Gibson

The Environmental Protection Agency is hoping that more people will take steps to reduce their exposure to radonColorless, odorless, short-lived radioactive gas that can seep into homes and result in lung cancer risk. Radon and its decay products emit cancer-causing alpha, beta, and gamma particles., a naturally occurring, odorless gas that kills more than 21,000 Americans every year.

A New Blowing Agent With a Lower Environmental Impact

Posted on January 13, 2015 by Scott Gibson

Honeywell says that it has started full-scale production of a refrigerant and insulating agent with an extremely low global warming potential, a development that could make extruded polystyrene (XPSExtruded polystyrene. Highly insulating, water-resistant rigid foam insulation that is widely used above and below grade, such as on exterior walls and underneath concrete floor slabs. In North America, XPS is made with ozone-depleting HCFC-142b. XPS has higher density and R-value and lower vapor permeability than EPS rigid insulation.) and polyurethane foams much more attractive environmentally.

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