Sometimes the images just don’t tell the whole story and that’s where some quality video will do the trick. I stumbled upon this video while doing research for a prior story and was blown away by the modern, green home. It’s ridiculous — probably a dream residence for many of you out there. The passive design, combined with good insulation, high performance glass, solar thermal panels, radiant flooring heating, and an efficient system, keeps this home operating very efficiently.
Recently I was able to speak with Matthew Linden of ConsciousBuild, a San Luis Obispo-based company that’s trying to make an eco-friendly contribution to the luxury home and lifestyle market. ConsciousBuild is ramping up a website to be launched in July that aims to provide podcasts, videos, and access to information on green building practices, techniques, and materials. Their first project, ConsciousBuildOne, or CBOne, was designed in the vernacular of Contemporary American Farmhouse and flies in the face of the notion that a green building needs to take any one particular form or shape. Serving as both a residence and office, Linden hopes CBOne will be used as an educational model for the latest in eco products, techniques, and technologies. Here’s what’s planned for the building:
The team at Diseño Earle was kind enough to pass along some info and images of their stunning design of The Eco Home — a knockout that’s aiming to be the first ‘zero carbon’ footprint home in Andalucia, or even Southern Spain for that matter! D Earle designed the home with two objectives in mind: (1) zero carbon footprint, and (2) reduce operating costs to almost a self-sufficiency level. The 6995 sf home, which is absolutely enormous, will be built with 75% less waste than a traditional design and operate 80% more efficiently than a similar sized home. And although the home design was constrained by the narrow, non-flat site, you can tell there was no restraint in creating the ultimate, luxury, green pad.
So Chelsea Green was kind enough to pass along a copy of Stephen and Rebekah Hren’s new book officially titled The Carbon-Free Home: 36 Remodeling Projects to Help Kick the Fossil Fuel Habit. As always, I’ve handled the book with care and will give it away to one lucky, random commenter below.* To give you an idea of the quality material contained in the book, here’s a review comment from the green guru Bill McKibben: "It’s hard to imagine a more comprehensive, and comprehensible, guide to making your home work for you and for the planet, inside and out. It’s frugal, it’s sensible, and it will help!" I’d like to echo the comments of Bill McKibben myself, because this book is completely legit.
I'm amazed by what can be found on Flickr. Just in the last couple weeks, someone posted photos of their friend's LVL home by Rocio Romero. It's quite nice both inside and out. And we've talked about Rocio Romero prefabs before, including this Napa LV Home and this Arkansas LVL Home, and what's interesting is: how they're customized. Every Rocio Romero home starts with a primary focus on quality, sustainability, and design — from there, owners tend to add their own personality to the inside and out.
In an innovative move, the Town of Babylon has set up an extensive program to work with citizens to pay for energy efficiency upgrades for every home in the town. The basic premise of the program is that the town wants to help residents use less energy, so here’s what they plan to do. They’re going to loan up to $12,000 at the super low interest rate of 3% to pay directly for renovation costs. Under the program, residents get home energy audits that include recommended actions for renovations, including adding more insulation, changing out the HVAC system, etc. The town pays for the renovations and the homeowner then makes payments to the town based roughly on the reduction in payments caused by having a more efficient home. So it’s quite the innovative system.