Renovating this 1960s ranch-style house in Maine is a “rags to riches” story that may achieve LEED Platinum. Jesse Thompson, AIA, partner at Kaplan Thompson Architects, and his wife Betsy Scheintaub, a fiber textile artist, collaborated on the Ranch Revival project while living in the run-down house with their two children.
There are several green events to attend while the kids are out of school this summer. Bring them along and make it an educational vacation!
Mark Your Calendars for these Upcoming Green Events
- NY13 Passive House Symposium – June 8, 2013 in New York City, New York
- GreenerBuilder 2013 – June 12, 2013 in San Francisco, California
- BALLE 2013 (Business Alliance for Local Living Economies) – June 12-14, 2013 in Buffalo, New York
- Sustainability and the C-Suite – June 13, 2013 – Online Webinar from University of Oregon
- LOHAS Business Conference (Lifestyles of Health and Sustainability) – June 18-20, 2013 in Boulder, Colorado
- Geothermal Energy Association (GEA) National Geothermal Summit – June 26-27, 2013 – Reno, Nevada
- InterSolar North America: Connecting Solar Business – July 8-11, 2013 in San Francisco, California
- Habitat X Summer National Conference – July 30 – August 2, 2013 in Helena, Montana
- Hanley Award for Vision and Leadership in Sustainable Housing: Award Presentation Dinner – September 4, 2013 in Washington, D.C.
- Solar Power International 2013 – October 21-24, 2013 in Chicago, Illinois
In a recent article on Indian Country Today Media Network, journalist Nate Seltenrich covered the sustainable building initiatives of several Native American tribes who were the country’s “original green builders.” Through efforts to improve upon substandard housing and economic hardships, indigenous populations are returning to traditional methods of home construction while incorporating modern technologies. Contemporary sustainability calls tribal members back to their cultural heritage and opens up avenues for attainable home ownership and lower energy costs, with the potential to revitalize communities.
Kaplan Thompson Architects were challenged by their clients to build a farmstead home in the mountains of Virginia that could not only meet standards for Passivhaus and LEED, but include a roof on which sheep could graze.
The solution: Earthship Farmstead is a house that is nestled in the east-facing hillside with a floorplan that fits the contours of the surrounding fields. The dining and living room extend out onto the hill to allow south-facing shaded windows to capture warmth and light from the sun. Recently, Earthship Farmstead received Passive House certification and is gathering data toward LEED Platinum certification.
Earlier this year, the World Record Academy awarded a home in Dillingham, Alaska with the record for the Tightest Residential Building.
In a video that documents the blower door test, the home’s owners and residents, Dr. Tom Marsik and Kristin Donalson, who designed and built the extremely insulated building, explain their motivation to push the limits of green building methods. The blower door test, which used a special attachment to get the most accurate reading, pressurized the building and then measured the flow that was needed to maintain the difference in pressure from the outside.
A new, green, custom home that has been built in Webster Grove, Missouri, is the work of Active House USA, a team of designers, builders, and materials manufacturers who are pooling their experience in environmentally conscious and sustainable building practices to construct homes around the world that utilize their Active House specifications, which combine focus on energy efficiency, healthy indoor climate, and minimal impact on the environment. To date, Active Houses are located in Portugal, Austria, Norway, UK, Italy, Netherlands, and Russia. The Webster Grove residence for the Smith family is the first Active House to be built in the United States and recently held its first open house.