Zero Energy Houses

In Pursuit of Zero: A trio of projects in different climates and settings offers insights for living with a smaller energy footprint.
[ Page 1 of 2 ]  Page 1 Page 2 next page
Architectural Record
By Joann Gonchar, FAIA

Learning Objectives:

  1. Define zero energy.
  2. Describe design strategies for zero energy house projects, including new construction and renovations.
  3. Discuss challenges to achieving zero energy operations.
  4. Explain the concepts behind the Passive House Standard.

Credits:

HSW
1 AIA LU/HSW
IACET
0.1 IACET CEU*
AIBD
1 AIBD P-CE
AAA
AAA 1 Structured Learning Hour
AANB
This course can be self-reported to the AANB, as per their CE Guidelines
AAPEI
AAPEI 1 Structured Learning Hour
MAA
MAA 1 Structured Learning Hour
NLAA
This course can be self-reported to the NLAA.
NSAA
This course can be self-reported to the NSAA
NWTAA
NWTAA 1 Structured Learning Hour
OAA
OAA 1 Learning Hour
SAA
SAA 1 Hour of Core Learning
 
This course can be self-reported to the AIBC, as per their CE Guidelines.
This course is approved as a Structured Course
This course can be self-reported to the AANB, as per their CE Guidelines
Approved for structured learning
Approved for Core Learning
This course can be self-reported to the NLAA.
Course may qualify for Learning Hours with NWTAA
Course eligible for OAA Learning Hours
This course is approved as a core course
This course can be self-reported for Learning Units to the Architectural Institute of British Columbia

View course on architecturalrecord.com »

BY NOW this salient fact has been hammered into architects’ heads: buildings account for nearly 40 percent of carbon emissions. But most professionals don’t know how to change that number fast. Shrinking the built environment’s share of the carbon pie requires a host of measures, from efficiency upgrades to using low-carbon materials and cleaning up the grid—a complicated list. But one straightforward solution is to make more buildings zero energy. And, with the United States facing a severe housing shortage, the residential market presents an opportunity to tackle both the climate crisis and the need for shelter.

PHOTOGRAPHY: RED HOUSE BUILDING (TOP) © LINDSAY SELIN (BOTTOM)

A HOUSE in Vermont’s Green Mountains, designed as a vacation home, has become a full-time Covid retreat, altering its expected energy-use profile.

Zero energy construction is a fledgling market, but one with a steep growth curve. The nonprofit New Buildings Institute says that zero energy commercial buildings across the United States and Canada now encompass 80 million square feet, a tenfold increase since 2010. In the North American residential sector, the Energy & Environmental Building Alliance (EEBA) counted 28,000 zero energy housing units by the third quarter of last year, up 26 percent since the organization’s last tally in 2018.

BUILDING SECTION

 

[ Page 1 of 2 ]  Page 1 Page 2 next page
Originally published in Architectural Record
Originally published in June 2021

Notice

Academies