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Green Rating Systems: Which One is Right for You?

Different green rating systems solve or create different problems depending on who’s using them and what they hope to get out of them. A real estate developer or builder might want bragging rights to help sell their homes while a municipality simply needs a third party standard to fortify minimum … Read more »

Making a Difference in Green Building

As an indisputable “nation of shoppers” we all like to check out the latest item. And anyone in the press knows that this is the surest way to bring eyeballs to your magazine, newspaper, web site or other media. So it comes as no surprise that the very latest green/sustainable … Read more »

What Sustainable Building Can Learn from Treehouses

In response to the current malpractice of marketing almost everything as green I would like to propose an unusual remedy – tree-houses. Specifically, I think the design and construction of “green” tree-houses produces a much needed refocusing on what we mean by sustainable. I first made this observation several years … Read more »

Custom, Green and Factory Built Homes

To suggest that prefab homes are green simply because they reduce waste is like saying insulation is a great way to reduce noise – it’s only the proverbial tip of the iceberg!  A primary indication of this fact is that both USGBC and NAHB award copious points in their respective … Read more »

Beyond BTUs, or Payback Persuasion

Paybacks persuade. Now that homeowners are once again counting their pennies, it has become relatively easy to make a case for “high performance” design. Anything with a reasonable payback is a simple sell – super insulation, solar collectors, condensing furnaces, instantaneous hot water-heaters. Even systems with longer paybacks like geothermal, … Read more »