May 23, 2018

The Zero Net Energy Primer: A Guide to the Future of Home Design

Designers and builders may need to make adjustments in their homes when California implements its upcoming zero energy building code for homes. Those adjustments are spelled out and illustrated in this new booklet. It’s a great guide for zero energy home design no matter where you live.

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May 22, 2018

The Future Looks Bright for Natural Gas in Earth Advantage Zero Energy Certified Homes

Third-party certifier, Earth Advantage, has evolved their zero energy home standards to make it easier for builders to include natural gas in their zero energy homes. Here’s what they did.

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December 11, 2015

The Clean Energy Revolution is Now

The Clean Energy Revolution is happening now. According to a study titled Revolution…Now, just updated by the Department of Energy this fall, clean energy deployment is accelerating and prices are declining. Zero Energy Homes and Positive Energy Homes, with their rooftop solar, LED lighting, and potential for powering electric vehicles are at the center of […]

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November 12, 2015

Zero Energy Multifamily Buildings: Three Case Studies

In 2014, 35 percent of all housing units constructed in the United States were multifamily units—housing units in buildings with five or more units. Demand for multifamily options for housing is stronger than ever and reports indicate that this trend will continue for a while. Multifamily buildings, both existing and new, present a tremendous opportunity […]

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August 2, 2015

Speaking of Zero: No to “Net-“, Yes to “Ready”

A Note From Sam Rashkin: You can‘t start a movement if no one can agree on a name. Is it a Net-Zero Energy Home, a Zero Net-Energy Home, a Zero Energy Home, or a Zero Energy Ready Home? The first key question we need to ask is; why use the word ‘Net’ to modify the […]

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July 24, 2015

California’s Residential Zero Energy Goals: Green or Greenwashing?

California set an ambitious goal known as The California Long Range Strategic Plan, which sets forth a goal for all new homes to be built to Zero Net Energy (ZNE) standards by 2020 and all commercial buildings to be built to Zero Net Energy standards by 2030. In California, homes consume nearly one-third of the energy used […]

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June 22, 2015

Tesla’s Powerwall

Can this new home battery be a game changer for sustainable energy? In April 2015, Elon Musk’s Tesla revealed their latest project, which has the potential to transform the way we store and use energy in our homes. The Tesla Powerwall is a sleek home battery that is charged from electricity generated from solar panels, or […]

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June 22, 2015

Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Financing for Veterans

We recently wrote a blog post about several options for financing residential solar panels or energy efficiency improvements for homes. For veterans, qualified military personnel and reservists, there is another option: the Veteran’s Administration Energy Efficient Mortgage (VA EEM). An Energy Efficient Mortgage (EEM) provides the borrower with special benefits when purchasing or refinancing a home […]

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May 19, 2015

Financing Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Upgrades for Existing Homes

Remodeling or retrofitting existing homes to become more energy efficient and as close to net zero as feasible, is just as important as building new Zero Energy Homes. In fact, there are ample opportunities to turn standard existing homes into Near Zero Energy, Zero Energy Ready or Zero Energy Homes. By retrofitting the existing inventory of homes, […]

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April 21, 2015

How to Use Surplus Energy Generated by a Positive Energy Home

Positive Energy Homes are homes that are so energy efficient that they generate more energy than they consume. They are truly the next frontier in green building as they have the potential to create carbon-free electricity. Think of these homes as miniature power plants, supplying clean, renewable energy needed to power a very comfortable home—with surplus […]

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