Jerry Yudelson is a machine when it comes to publishing new books on cutting-edge green building topics.  In his latest book, Green Building Trends: Europe, Yudelson tackles a topic that's popping up in the news more and more.  Whether the topic is couched in a discussion of PassivHaus, Swedish prefabrication, or otherwise, it surfaces as a question: Are Europeans more advanced that Americans when it comes to green building design and innovation?

If you're looking for an answer, I suggest grabbing a copy of this book, and I'm not just saying this because Island Press was nice enough to send us a review copy.  We're giving this review copy away to one lucky reader below.*  I suggest grabbing Green Building Trends because it's thorough, and Yudelson spent a year doing the footwork and research to compile case studies, photographs, and illustrations.  It's material you may not find anywhere else …

Here's the straight truth, though.  According to the case studies in the book, European green buildings routinely use 50-90% less energy than comparable certified green projects in the U.S.  And that's a problem in need of a solution.  Here's what you can expect from Green Building Trends:

  • Intro: European Green Buildings in Context
  • Ch. 1: The PassivHaus Concept and European Residential Design
  • Ch. 2: European Design Innovators
  • Ch. 3: European Green Buildings: What do They Know that We Don't?
  • Ch. 4: Green Buildings in the United Kingdom (case studies)
  • Ch. 5: Sustainable Buildings in Germany (case studies)
  • Ch. 6: Green Engineering in Europe
  • Ch. 7: Eco-Towns
  • Ch. 8: Green Building in the Retail Sector
  • Ch. 9: Looking to the Future
  • Ch. 10: The Challenge and Promise of Green Buildings: Lessons from Europe

I've previously read about the 2,000 Watt Society in an article on Samsø in The New Yorker, but in Chapter 9, Yudelson references the concept while making a point about setting stretch goals in absolute terms rather than percentage improvements.  That's what the 2,000 Watt Society does.  It sets an absolute goal to strive for rather than a percentage improvement. 

Without going into too much detail, Yudelson makes some interesting recommendations that industry professionals should all read (for example: we should adopt a labeling system like the EPC/DEC regime in the UK).  This is good reading, so make sure to grab a copy at Amazon:

[+] Green Building Trends: Europe by Jerry Yudelson.
[+] Green Building Consulting by Yudelson Associates.

*If you're interested in winning a copy of this book, drop a comment by midnight MST on Friday, September 18, 2009.  We're giving away one copy.  Say where you're from if you don't know what to say.  By leaving a comment, you agree to the terms and conditions relating to giveaways on Jetson Green.