Getting to Zero: The Frontier of Low-Energy Buildings

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Despite the buzz about zero-energy buildings, just what zero-energy means and how to achieve it remain confusing at best. Divergent definitions and limited monitoring leave questions about how much energy these buildings actually use, and getting to zero, by almost any definition, challenges even the most experienced design teams. This article sorts out the confusion and sheds light on some of the stumbling blocks along the path to zero-energy.

From the Editors

A Bold Plan for New Orleans
EBN lays out a ten-step plan for rebuilding New Orleans and surrounding communities while respecting the local ecologies, economies, and people.

See Y'all in Atlanta!
BuildingGreen will play a big role in the U.S. Green Building Council’s upcoming Greenbuild conference: Alex Wilson and Nadav Malin will both present conference sessions, and Nadav will be part of a preconference workshop on green products. And, we’ll be active on the expo floor. Stop by booth 905 to say hello!


FloorScore IAQ Testing Program Launched
The Resilient Floor Covering Institute’s new green label is awarded to products that meet low indoor emission standards.

Then & Now

NOLS Mexico Branch Ten Years Later
When we wrote about plans for a NOLS base camp on Baja California in 1995, the buildings were mostly on paper. Ten years later, EBN checks in to see where, and if, things stand.



Awards & Competitions

ASLA Announces 2005 Medal and Professional Award Winners

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The American Society of Landscape Architects has recognized pioneering green people and projects.

Award Briefs

Product Review

Ice Bear: Thermal Energy Storage for Smaller Buildings
Ice Energy’s Ice Bear brings thermal energy storage to the “Starbucks to Wal-Mart” market, offering savings in demand charges and through more attractive time-of-day billing costs for electricity.

Product News

Cold-Climate Heat Pump Temporarily Chilled
Nyle Special Products has suspended production of the Cold-Climate Heat Pump, but hopes to continue production by the end of 2005.

Product Briefs

From the Library

Design for Life: The Architecture of Sim Van der Ryn
This coffee-table-style book highlights one of the sustainability movement’s luminaries.

Specifying LEED Requirements: Lessons Learned from Masterspec
This new resource includes guidance documents, sample spec language, and other tools to help designers and spec writers incorporate LEED requirements into their construction documents.