GreenDesignCollective

building a sustainable and resilient community

Midterms in the Sustainable Buildings Class

This past Tuesday, we all got to see for the first time what buildings the students are modeling for their Term Projects, the primary objective of which is to evaluate a building’s energy consumption using three different methodologies.   The students will then derive from this process a better understanding of that building’s interaction with its […]

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State and Local Programs and Codes, and Assignment #2

In today’s lecture, we dialed down into discussing state and local programs and codes, after having discussed the breadth and reach of federal programs in last week’s class.  There are many, many programs across the country, and even more codes and variations on codes in each jurisdiction.  But, since we’re in Oregon, it’s fair to […]

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Better Buildings and the Federal Government

In today’s class we discussed the various programs, standards, and incentives supported by the Federal Government to promote energy efficient, high performance and sustainable buildings.  We started off by talking about funding… the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Agency receive substantial funding, but it’s only a fraction of what “other” agencies receive.  Below is […]

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Why Assignment #7 is first, and Energy Modeling 101

Because we won’t see results for Assignment #7 unless we start it now! Assignment #7 is to sign up on the Web site EarthAid.com, to see how you use energy in your own dwelling, and to see if knowing how much energy you use will help you save it.  We’ll all “friend” each other on […]

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Bundling up your house

I’ve been spending a lot of time thinking about insulation lately.  Part of that is because of HOME STAR, which provides incentives for homeowners if they choose to upgrade the insulation in their house, among other things.  My explanation of HOME STAR inevitably leads to explaining some of the measures available for incentives, and insulation […]

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Living on a giant crusty earthen raft

So, there’s been a lot of earthquakes lately.  Haiti back in January; Chile, last weekend; Japan, back in February; California, constantly for about the past month; and Taiwan yesterday.   I know many scientists will say “these events are not related”, but, as I reminded my friends yesterday, people act like we don’t live on a […]

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HOME STAR: This is kind of a big deal

There are several energy and climate bills floating around in the Congress right now, including the Kerry/Boxer (or Kerry/Graham/Lieberman) Clean Energy Jobs and American Power Act (which has been in the works since – but not because – I thanked them here) ; the Bingaman/Murkowski American Clean Energy Leadership Act, or ACELA; the Cantwell/Collins CLEAR […]

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Want to get a home energy rating?

…Well if so, let me know, because I’m at a conference with several hundred home energy raters this week! First of all, you may want to know what a “home energy rating” consists of.  The funny thing is, there’s actually LOTS of home energy ratings.  There’s the HERS, which is given by ResNet, which is […]

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Q: What’s wee, made of straw bale, and awesome?

A:  The ModCell Straw-Bale Pre-Fab home! File this under “better late than never”… I just learned about this house and knew I had to talk about it here because it embodies many of the things that I love in one tidy, very livable package.  Observe: It’s a house, which is great, since I love house […]

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…and I dropped the blogging ball! More about the Solar Decathlon…

Sorry for going on hiatus after my last post from DC about the Solar Decathlon.  The truth of the matter is that the weather was 100% miserable the entire time I was there, and I had not the time nor the space to blog:  my hands were numb and it was raining, thus making it […]

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