Living Green: The House That Produces Its Own Power

I’ll admit–every now and then I forget my recycling and leave the tap running while I’m brushing my teeth. I don’t use solar power and love my air-conditioning, but make a conscious effort to run errands on my bike. More often than not, the reason many people fail to live a more sustainable lifestyle is due to one thing–time, or a lack of it. But the HouseZero project is aiming to ease our load by making households ultra-efficient.

The performance goals set forth for HouseZero include: zero carbon emissions, including the materials; 100% natural ventilation and daylight autonomy; and near-zero energy use for heating and cooling.

Too good to be true? I hope not. HouseZero even claims that all its goals will be met without materially or visually affecting a house’s appearance.

There are more than 14 million homes like the one being retrofitted in this project across the United States, and the success of HouseZero will hopefully inspire more retrofits like it.

Ali Malkawi, director of the Harvard Center for Green Buildings and Cities, suggests that the solution lies not in energy production, but in energy reduction.

To further diminish your carbon footprint, moderate your demands.

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