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.

The number of cities committing to using clean energy sources has more than doubled since President Trump was elected in November and decided to pull out of the Paris Climate Accord, according to The Huffington Post.

Solar power figures heavily in the state of Hawaii's quest to have 100 percent renewable generation by the year 2045. In October, the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission (HPUC) approved two new programs, which will encourage more customers to go solar.

Already a leader in clean energy and greenhouse gas reduction, California has set some ambitious goals for the future. One state utility thinks those goals are attainable and offers a plan for success.

In 1985, Rocky Mountain Institute co-founder Amory Lovins coined the term “negawatt” to describe the value of electricity not used, either through improved energy efficiency or reduced consumption. At the time, he was considered a bit of a fringe thinker.

More on Green Building

 
Green Bill of Health

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.


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Blown Away

We’ve heard the wind-integration success stories from Sweden and Denmark, but we haven’t heard as much about how wind is contributing right now to U.S. electricity supplies.


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Energy Storage: The Crusade Continues

Has Elon Musk discovered renewable energy’s Holy Grail? He’s already reinvented financial transactions for the Internet age with PayPal and made electric vehicles sexy with Tesla Motors.


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Energy Your Way

In the energy field, who we receive our power from and what we receive may soon be our choice. In fact, some customers are already in the driver’s seat through something called ­community choice aggregation (CCA).


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Take A Load Off

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.


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A Sunny Future: A New Approach to Solar

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.


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Web Exclusive
Conventional crystalline solar panels on a farm in Pottsgrove, Pa. Credit Tom Gibson.
Beyond Conventional Solar PV Panels

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.


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