Green Builder Media Logo

The Five Best Green Building Ideas This Century (So Far)

Posted by Matt Power, Editor-In-Chief

Jan 20, 2016 9:30:00 AM

A lot of the really groundbreaking stuff going on in green building happens behind the walls, so of course you might never notice it.


The building industry is notoriously slow to change, but when the global recession hit a few years ago, smart builders carved a green niche to save their companies. Eco-friendly construction tends to continue, even when times are relatively bad, motivated by the idea of saving money on energy, water, and so on.

What's really changed in the past couple of decades? Here's my short list of some of the best and brightest ideas, and why they matter:

LED Lighting. Finally, we can stop cursing our compact fluorescent lamps. Unlike fluorescent lamps, which rarely live up to their promised of 10,000 hour lifespans, contain enough mercury to classify as hazardous waste and make your complexion look like undead zombie flesh, LED bulbs do it all. They' use a fraction of the energy of a CFL, come in dimmable versions that change color warmly, last up to 50,000 hours, and don't contain mercury. Win, win, win. Another new entry into this category are LED replacement lamps for fluorescent fixtures. This is a major upgrade in terms of both performance and sustainability. The common 4-ft. lamps in fluorescent lamps contain hazardous mercury, and we all know they don't last as long as they should. A comparable LED replacement lamp uses half the power, comes on instantly, and could last 50,000 hours, compared to about 8,000 hours for CFLs.

Read More

50 Earth-Saving Ideas

Posted by Green Builder Staff

Oct 15, 2015 10:07:39 AM

These innovations are improving lives and guarding against the impacts of climate change.

EVERY YEAR THE innovation platform Sustainia compiles a guide showcasing 100 solutions from around the globe that are already creating a more sustainable future.

Read More

Managing Trees During Droughts

Posted by Green Builder Staff

Aug 3, 2015 12:31:00 PM

Trees keep urban landscapes cool, beautify neighborhoods and retain stormwater, but droughts put trees at risk.

THIS INFOGRAPHIC, created by the California Urban Forests Council (CaUFC), provides valuable tips for keeping trees alive and healthy during droughts.

Read More

Water Wars: EPA Rule Front and Center

Posted by Sara Gutterman

May 21, 2015 8:23:32 AM

EPA’s Waters of the United States rule on the regulation of water pollution is creating polarity—and some unlikely allies.

For decades, farmers, businesses, developers, environmental groups, and elected officials have been confused by the scope of federal jurisdiction over the types of water bodies protected by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under the Clean Water Act, which ensures the safety of drinking water.   To clarify its authority over water pollution control, the EPA proposed a controversial and widely criticized rule last year that would prevent the pollution of streams, tributaries, and wetlands that feed water sources.

Read More

Drought Dilemma Challenges Unlimited Growth

Posted by Sara Gutterman

Apr 16, 2015 9:09:00 AM

California’s drought is putting the concept of unlimited growth under severe scrutiny, and for good reasons. 

When it comes to water, California is running out of options—and time. Suffering through its fourth year of excruciating drought...the state’s snow pack is at an all-time low... Governor Brown has issued unprecedented water restrictions...surface and ground water is quickly drying up...and crop and pasture losses are escalating.

Read More
Download Green Builder's Homeowners' Handbook
2016 ACI National Home Performance
The Greenguard Difference - Download Now

Add a comment...