Green Building News

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Near-Zero-Energy Homes In Inner-City Hartford

Posted on January 6, 2009 by Martin Holladay

CT Non-Profit Plans 100 Similar Homes Every Year for the Next Decade

HARTFORD, CT — A nonprofit housing developer, SAND Corporation, will soon begin building six net-zero-energy homes in an inner-city Hartford neighborhood. According to the Hartford Courant, SAND (an acronym for South Arsenal Neighborhood Development) has raised $2.1 million to build three duplexes on Earle Street in North Hartford.

Will Anderson house

U.K. House Generates More Energy Than It Uses

Posted on January 6, 2009 by Martin Holladay

Insulation and Airtightness Are Key in Reducing Energy Use.

CLAPHAM, UNITED KINGDOM — Owner-builder Will Anderson claims that the house he completed in 2006 produces more energy than it uses. Equipped with a 4.3-kW 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. array, Anderson’s all-electric home is heated by a ground-source heat pumpHome heating and cooling system that relies on the mass of the earth as the heat source and heat sink. Temperatures underground are relatively constant. Using a ground-source heat pump, heat from fluid circulated through an underground loop is transferred to and/or from the home through a heat exchanger. The energy performance of ground-source heat pumps is usually better than that of air-source heat pumps; ground-source heat pumps also perform better over a wider range of above-ground temperatures.. The heat pump also supplies a portion of the home's hot water, with the remainder supplied by a solar thermal system.

Santa Fe green home 2

Green Building Codes Are Derailed In Albuquerque and Santa Fe

Posted on January 6, 2009 by Martin Holladay

HVAC Group Files Suits Against Code

SANTA FE, NM — The development of a new green building code in Santa Fe has been delayed by a legal challenge to a proposed green building code in Albuquerque. On October 3, 2008, a federal district judge granted a preliminary injunction preventing Albuquerque from implementing its new green building code, which included provisions that might be interpreted as establishing minimum efficiency standards for residential heating and cooling equipment that are more stringent than federal minimum requirements.

California weatherization table

California Increases Funding For Low-Income Weatherization

Posted on January 5, 2009 by Martin Holladay

One Billion Dollars to Tighten Up Homes in Poor Neighborhoods

SACRAMENTO, CA — The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) has approved a budget of $1 billion over the next three years for the state’s Low-Income Energy Efficiency Program (LIEE). The LIEE program provides energy-efficient appliances and weatherization measures at no cost to eligible California households. The CPUC has announced that the program will provide comprehensive energy audits for each participating home, followed by a whole-house approach to identifying appropriate retrofit measures.

MEEA logo 2

Michigan Court Rules In Favor Of New Energy Code

Posted on January 5, 2009 by Martin Holladay

Homebuilders' Association Loses, Environment Wins

LANSING, MI — The Ingham County [Michigan] Circuit Court has ruled in favor of the state of Michigan, dismissing a challenge from the Michigan Association of Home Builders (MAHB) that sought to prevent energy-efficiency requirements for new homes. According to the Midwest Energy Efficiency Alliance (MEEA), “The new, energy-efficient code, adopted in 2004, had been in limbo due to legal maneuvering by the MAHB, which used the state’s legal system to circumvent the comprehensive administrative process that led to the adoption of a new, more energy efficient code. As a result, Michigan residents lost years of potential energy savings, totaling tens of millions of dollars and contributing to increased releases of environmental pollutants.”

Weather Shield window

Bailout bill leaves a one-year gap, with no available tax credits for work performed in 2008

Posted on January 5, 2009 by Martin Holladay

New Tax Credits For Residential Energy Improvements Will Be Available for 2009 Work

WASHINGTON, DC — The $700 billion bank bailout bill signed into law by President Bush in October 2008 included a renewal of the homeowner energy-efficiency tax credits originally established in August 2005. (These tax credits were available to homeowners who performed air-sealing work, installed Energy StarLabeling system sponsored by the Environmental Protection Agency and the US Department of Energy for labeling the most energy-efficient products on the market; applies to a wide range of products, from computers and office equipment to refrigerators and air conditioners. windows, installed insulation, or bought an efficient furnace or air conditioner in 2006 and 2007.) While the new bill reinstates tax credits for work performed in 2009, it leaves a one-year gap, with no available tax credits for work performed in 2008.

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