Green Building

 

A blooming industry, green building is rising with greater public demand, legislative focus, and code and standard mandates. With programs like Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) becoming more popular, contractors are finding new building processes and technologies to be more efficient and environmentally minded. The below articles dive into alternative energies, energy efficiency, the smart grid, and more and include editorial from our annual special issue on the subject.

In February 2014, researchers at Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) released a report that outlines how rooftop photovoltaic (PV) arrays, combined with battery-based energy storage could lead electric-utility customers to opt out of the connected grid.

The community solar market barely existed just a few years ago, but now the concept that allows even renters to invest in their own photovoltaic (PV) panels is going gangbusters in a number of states.

Conventional crystalline solar panels on a farm in Pottsgrove, Pa. Credit Tom Gibson.

Around the country, solar photovoltaic installations are sprouting on residences and commercial buildings. If Doug Neidich has his way, we’ll see many more of these, but of a different variety.

Green building trends have affected nearly every sector of the construction and renovation market, and schools and universities are part of it.

More on Green Building

 
A Slow Boil: Interest in geothermal resources rises


Imagine an energy source buried thousands of feet below us that can best be accessed by sending highly pressurized fluid to open fissures in underground rock.

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The Energy-Generation Puzzle

Once upon a time, many solar-enthusiast homeowners saw their rooftop photovoltaic (PV) panels as investments in a greener future, not as contributors to their own household budgets.

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Aloha Clean Energy

Separated from the U.S. mainland’s electric supply by an ocean, Hawaii is working toward a goal mandated by Hawaii’s Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS), which requires 40 percent of the state’s electricity to be derived from clean-energy sources by 2030.


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Web Exclusive
EV Charging Goes Public

Talk to folks in the electric vehicle (EV) industry about commercial charging opportunities, and there is a very good chance you’ll hear that old which-came-first/chicken-or-egg metaphor applied to the market’s potential.

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Utility-Scale Renewables 3.0

You could call it utility-scale renewables 3.0. 
The previous two phases focused on getting large solar arrays and wind farms up and running (1.0) and then boosting their output (2.0). Today, developers are looking beyond just adding more rows of panels or bigger turbines to their plans.

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Paint It Green: Energy-Efficiency Renovation

It’s no secret that the global economy, available energy supply and the balance-sheet status of the worldwide electrical supply-chain industry are never going to return to the levels they reached at the end of the 20th century. There is no optimistic rebound coming.


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It's A Fast Market

Electric vehicles (EVs) appear to be in a boom cycle in 2014. Year-to-date figures at the end of June were up 33 percent compared to 2013’s numbers, and May, June and July all posted sales in record or near-record territory, according to the EV-tracking website InsideEVs.com.

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