Green Homes

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Energy-Efficient Straw-bale Home in the Colorado Rockies

Oct 11, 2010 | Carbondale, Colorado

By Doug Graybeal

Our house is located outside of Carbondale, Colo., at an altitude of 7,000 feet. The architecture is both responsive to the climate — a dry mountain environment — and reflective of the local mountain style. I’m an architect, and I designed the house to be as energy efficient and environmentally friendly as possible within a reasonable budget. Of course, my wife and I, both self-employed professionals, also wanted a wonderful space to live and work in. The use of natural materials has made it a warm, cozy and comfortable home.

David Glasser - Cathy

Owner-Builders Get a Tight Shell With SIPs

Oct 5, 2010 | Old Lyme, Connecticut

By David and Cathy Glasser

To see a video tour of this home, click here.

Acting as general contractors, my wife Cathy (a nurse practitioner) and I (a jazz musician) succeeded in building a Five-Star+ 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. home for less than $125 a square foot. If we could do it, so can you.

College of the Atlantic -- exterior

Careful Air Sealing Trims Energy Use at New College Dorms

Sep 29, 2010 | Bar Harbor, Maine

By Hal Bohner

In the cold climate of coastal Maine, effective air sealing is critical to maximizing energy efficiency. The architect for the project, Bruce Coldham, said, “We have tried many approaches to air sealing over the past twenty years, but we hit the jackpot with these buildings. The results were spectacular. We achieved a remarkable final airtightness of 0.79 ACH50 consistent over three similar buildings. Without the comprehensive air-sealing design and implementation, the buildings would have been seven-plus times leakier.”

bindley - after

A True Net-Zero Gut Rehab, New England-Style

Sep 27, 2010 | Holderness, New Hampshire

By Peter Yost and Martin Holladay

Before retrofit work began, Jane Bindley's 1978 ranch house on the shore of Squam Lake was an ordinary fiberglass-insulated energy hog. Bindley had a dream: to turn her home in central New Hampshire into a net-zero-energy house. How hard could that be?

As it turned out, pretty hard. But with help from a dedicated team of experts and a generous budget, Bindley achieved her dream.

Can a north-facing house be net-zero?

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