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.

This past April, Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk grabbed headlines with the introduction of two battery-based energy-storage products from the new Tesla Energy subsidiary he claims will “fundamentally change how the world uses energy.” Perhaps even more important to Musk’s ambitious goal is the anticipat

Aspiration sets the level of sustainability in a building project. Green construction often focuses on reducing environmental harm through energy efficiency, water conservation, better air quality and alternative power. Regenerative design aims even higher.

In his 2011 State of the Union message, President Barack Obama set a goal to have 1 million electric vehicles (EVs) on the road by the end of 2015. That isn’t likely to happen.

Hospitals are complicated environments for green-design practitioners. Their scale, the critical nature of their mission and their often-stretched budgets can make sustainability—however it’s defined—a tough sell, without clear evidence of a quick return on investment.

More on Green Building

Hybrid Power

Conversations about renewable energy often come down to a comparison—solar versus wind, for example, or hydroelectric versus geothermal—as though one technology, alone, could provide the single answer to our need for safe, emissions-free electricity production.

Going Back To School

A transformation is in the air as better built, greener schools become a focus of states and local communities.

New York State Investing in Renewable Power

With all of the help and all of the hype they have enjoyed in the last few years, renewables are starting to get their proverbial legs underneath them. That is not to say they have progressed beyond the point where they could use some assistance from the public sector.

Energy Storage Expands Worldwide

Those who follow the emergence of renewables know that one of the biggest drawbacks is intermittency. The wind and the sun are not necessarily most plentiful when electricity is in demand.

Largest Fuel Cell Power Project in North America

Dominion, one of America’s largest energy companies, recently announced an expansion of its clean-energy portfolio by developing a major fuel cell power generating facility in Bridgeport, Conn. The new facility uses a reactive process that converts natural gas into electricity.

Sun Setting on Sky-High Solar Prices

If the high installation cost of solar photovoltaics (PV) has been the one thing preventing it from being a completely viable clean-energy alternative, the industry may finally be over that barrier.

Study Finds Solar a Bargain for New Jersey and Pennsylvania

A recent study by the consulting firm Clean Power Research showed that solar power in New Jersey and Pennsylvania delivers value to the electric grid that exceeds its cost by a large margin, making it a bargain for consumers.