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.

When it comes to generation and transmission system management, utility-scale solar photovoltaic (PV) arrays are often spoken of as a problem rather than as a solution. However, today’s sophisticated inverters and plant controls are helping to turn around this negative reputation.

The support for alternative energies, and solar power in particular, remains strong. Renewable power technologies continue to achieve new efficiencies and to become more feasible.

Energy-saving practices, such as rooftop solar panels and increased efficiency through smart lighting and home automation, are becoming mainstays of new construction, spurred on by recent legislation in cities like San Francisco.

Atlanta is the most recent U.S. city to make a green commitment. According to the Sierra Club, 27 cities are pledging to use 100 percent renewable energy by various deadlines. In the past year, more than a dozen joined. The Sierra Club keeps a record on its “Ready for 100” website.

More on Green Building

UNC and Duke Energy to Develop Coastal Wind Pilot Project

In a pilot project designed to harness the power of the ocean breezes along North Carolina’s coast, the University of North Carolina (UNC) at Chapel Hill and Duke Energy announced they have signed a contract to place up to three demonstration wind turbines in the Pamlico Sound.

Greensburg Sees Both Sides of the Wind

It has only been two Years since a devastating EF5 tornado destroyed almost the entire town of Greensburg, Kan. The town is now pinning its future hopes on the force that nearly wiped it off the map.

Report States Green Policies Could Create 4.5 Million Jobs

A new report suggests green energy policies will be a major job creator in the United States. According to the report, “Estimating the Jobs Impact of Tackling Climate Change,” released jointly by the American Solar Energy Society (ASES) and Management Information Services Inc.

New Jersey Celebrates 10 Millionth CFL Milestone

The New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (BPU) announced that more than 10 million Energy Star-qualified compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) have been distributed statewide as part of New Jersey’s Clean Energy Program. The milestone shows the state’s progress toward the future envisioned in Gov.

Report: Installed Cost of Solar PV Systems Fell in 2008

The Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) released a new study, “Tracking the Sun II: The Installed Cost of Photovoltaics in the U.S.

Vice President Pushes for Expanded Home Energy-Efficiency Retrofit Industry

The green revolution and America’s economic recovery are indelibly intertwined. Doubters of this connection need only check the latest headlines.

3-D PV System Based on Optical Fiber Could Provide New Options

Converting sunlight to electricity might no longer mean large panels of photovoltaic (PV) cells atop flat surfaces like roofs.