There are more people living in urban areas than rural areas than ever before in human history, and is expected to rise to 70% in this century. Much of this growth will occur in low-lying deltas and be vulnerable to climate change and flooding. Scarcity of resources requires cities to become increasingly self-sufficient.
The Oregon-based EcoNest Company is the manifestation of an holistic design concept that being implemented in the construction of homes using straw-clay walls, earth plasters, and non-toxic, natural finishes. The concept as a company encompasses Paula Baker-Laporte, FAIA and Robert Laporte, and has grown to become a resource for home building workshops and seminars, design and build assistance, a network of professional green builders, and access to other learning opportunities.
Sustainably-designed and featuring over 40,000 linear feet of wall, roof, and canopy that is covered in panels from Metal Sales Manufacturing Corporation, the country’s largest planned net zero energy community is UC Davis West Village, a 205-acre project that will be home to 662 apartments and 343 single-family homes, along with commercial and recreational facilities.
Team ASUNM, a collaborative effort between Arizona State University and University of New Mexico, has come together to address the inefficiencies of urban sprawl and to create a model for sustainable desert living that has been dubbed SHADE (Solar Home Adapting for Desert Equilibrium), which is an entry in the Solar Decathlon 2013 competition that takes place on October 3-13, 2013 in Irvine, California.