February 8, 2021

Now, a More Climate-Friendly Spray Foam

Spray foam is used enthusiastically by many builders hoping to improve energy performance of their projects. But the hidden climate impact of conventional 2-pound, closed- cell foam is actually a huge step backward. A new generation of low global warming potential spray foam corrects this fatal flaw.

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February 6, 2021

Time to Build and Buy Homes that Power Electric Vehicles 

Two trends are now converging that will promote a zero energy lifestyle. First, electric vehicle sales are poised to grow dramatically. Second, positive energy homes are growing in popularity. These homes create enough energy to supply all at-home energy use and much of the transportation energy for households. It's time for building professionals to build positive energy homes for homebuyers who will soon be driving and charging electric vehicles.

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February 5, 2021

Want an Eco Home? Here’s What You Need To Know about Real Estate To Actually Get One

Home buyers can have a daunting task when looking for a home that is green, healthy and energy efficient. Much of the available real estate sales information ignores vital metrics in these areas. But if you’re looking to buy or sell a home with exceptional environmental and energy efficient features, here is an online tool that will help.

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February 5, 2021

Zero Energy Housing Market Could Double in 2021

The sixth annual inventory of zero energy homes has just been released. It shows considerable growth to almost 28,000 units. Projections indicate the number could double in 2021.

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January 12, 2021

Brightleaf Homes Gets High Value Appraisals 

Brightleaf Homes used zero energy ready homes to break into the Chicago home building market. Building higher value high performance homes was just the beginning. Then they had to make the extra cost work for buyers. Here’s how they do it.

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November 9, 2020

Keep Cool Without Air Conditioning

Since before the dawn of civilization, humans have stayed comfortable by harnessing the forces of nature. These principles can also be applied in today’s homes and buildings to reduce or eliminate energy used for conventional air conditioning.

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September 11, 2020

Keep Zero Energy Construction Simple

Ted L. Clifton of Zero Energy Plans has been designing and building zero energy homes using structural insulated panels (SIPs) for many years. He shares his thoughts about affordability, building codes, and electrification in this interview.

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July 19, 2020

Are Solar Roofs Ready To Go Mainstream?

On new and retrofitted roofs, you can now use aesthetically pleasing solar shingles to keep the weather out and generate renewable energy. They’re more cost-effective than you may think. We compare costs with other roof options and review pros and cons to help you decide if they are right for you.

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June 12, 2020

Does Your Insulation Have Low Embodied Carbon?

Zero energy homes need thick layers of insulation, but some materials have serious climate impacts. Identify the key factors that affect the carbon footprint of insulation materials and some good choices for future projects.

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June 11, 2020

Energy-Efficient Windows Help Close Holes in Your Envelope 

Seven times more heat can escape through a window than a wall. There are more choices than ever to balance energy performance with the other important benefits of windows. Choosing windows wisely will help close the gap.

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June 8, 2020

The Smog in Your Kitchen – What the Experts Say

Experts Say Cooking with gas is hazardous to health, according to research that spans the last several decades. A recent study puts the issue in stark terms. Air inside homes can be more unhealthy than outdoor pollution even during a wild fire that fills the air with smoke.

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June 8, 2020

The Many Benefits of All-Electric Design

Decades of advertising tell us that gas is cheap. Even without factoring in the cost of climate change, natural gas is no longer the least expensive choice for residential use. It’s a new era of cost-effective, low carbon, all-electric homes.

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