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Free Webinar: Connected Living Trends—What's in Demand?

Posted by Green Builder Staff

May 12, 2020 9:42:17 AM

Within the next decade, every new home will include a pre-installed smart home system with an array of smart devices and appliances. The dramatic takeover of tech in our lives has officially moved smart homes from being a nice-to-have to a must-have, just like countertops, flooring, and tile.

Consumer demand for smart home technology continues to explode, but with the variety of choices out there, how do you pick the right tech solution? This webinar cuts through all the noise in the smart home space and addresses the most important points about today's connected homes, including:

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Carbon Emissions Turned Back 10 Years

Posted by Green Builder Staff

May 6, 2020 12:23:26 PM

Data show coronavirus countermeasures have resulted in a record drop in fossil-fuel demand and created an opening for a clean-energy transition.

The early months of 2020 have offered a glimpse of a world with less demand for fossil fuels as it tries to contain the coronavirus pandemic. It is a world in which renewable energy makes up a greater share of energy use, and carbon emissions are turned back to levels from a decade ago. Researchers at the Paris-based International Energy Agency, which last week released its Global Energy Review 2020, say any lasting effects “will be determined by the duration of lockdown measures and the recovery paths taken.”

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2021 IECC: Massive Changes or Incremental Improvements?

Posted by Green Builder Staff

Apr 30, 2020 11:35:14 AM

The 2021 IECC has now been finalized.  Jim Meyers from SWEEP explores the new residential provisions in the 2021 IECC and highlight the changes in building envelope, lighting, and building science requirements, and how these changes will affect utilities, trades, home builders, code officials, and designers.

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New Bio-Bug Targets Plastic

Posted by Green Builder Staff

Apr 27, 2020 11:59:31 AM

The polyurethane-eating bacteria could offer a better way to deal with Earth's plastic overload.

Polyurethane, a key component in everything from kitchen sponges to building insulation—and one that is rarely recycled—may become less of an insurmountable pollutant, thanks to a newly discovered, hungry microbe. Researchers at the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research-UFZ in Leipzig, Germany say a new strain of Pseudomonas bacteria can completely consume the toxic plastic within weeks, providing a way to keep tons of the troublesome compound out of landfills.

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Free Webinar: Coronavirus and Systemic Changes in the Housing Industry

Posted by Green Builder Staff

Apr 24, 2020 11:31:50 AM

There are many unknowns swirling around the Coronavirus right now, but one thing is certain: there will be long-term, systemic changes in the housing sector that will place new demands on building professionals and manufacturers alike. 

Join Green Builder Media on Wednesday, May 6, 2020 at 3:00 Eastern as CEO Sara Gutterman explores shifting consumer behaviors, purchasing patterns, and sentiment; key areas where consumer expectations may be changed for good; and trends in essential areas like connected living, health & wellness, and energy.

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Free Webinar: Riding Out The Storm

Posted by Green Builder Staff

Apr 21, 2020 3:56:18 PM

Resilient housing products and preparation in an age of monster storms, raging wildfires and deadly pandemics.

Award winning journalist and building science expert Matt Power explores the latest threats and solutions available that can make homes tougher, less flood-prone and more fire resistant. The goal: to reduce property damage and keep inhabitants safe—even in times of prolonged isolation—at the same time reducing energy bills and prioritizing systems needed for survival and basic comfort. Resilient homes, with cutting edge equipment, don’t have to look like apocalyptic bunkers. Whether you’re building from the ground up or retrofitting for resilience, when extreme events occur, you can be ready for (almost) anything.Watch Now

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New Technical Review Published on Botanic Gardens' Role in Environmental Sustainability

Posted by Green Builder Staff

Apr 20, 2020 9:50:50 AM

Botanic Gardens Conservation International (BGCI) has released a new Technical Review in collaboration with Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens highlighting the role of botanic gardens in practicing and promoting sustainability.

The review summarizes the best sustainability practices botanic gardens worldwide are using and examines ways to encourage and increase visitor behavior change. The Review is divided into sections describing what botanic gardens are currently doing and what they can do to influence others, with a strong focus on increasing visitor engagement. 

Botanic gardens attract more than 500 million visitors a year, putting these organizations in a strong position to educate and influence a large section of society on the effects of climate change. As institutions that aim to connect guests with the beauty of nature, it aligns with botanic gardens' values to be proponents of environmental sustainability. Staff of botanic gardens also have the technical knowledge and skills that can be used to address the issue of climate change, making them an excellent resource for guests to learn information and tools that will empower them to make real change. 

The Review was compiled using the results of two sustainability surveys that botanic gardens and associated institutions completed in late 2019. The surveys were a joint effort between BGCI and Phipps. The first survey looked at the sustainable practices that the organization or institution are currently employing. In total, 99 institutions responded to this survey, representing 36 countries across the global network.

The first part of the Review explores the results of this survey, reporting the in-house practices of an organization to meet sustainability targets and address climate change through areas such as green buildings, renewable energy supply, sustainable staff travel, carbon offsetting, sustainable food and more. The next part of the Review examines the result of the second survey, which focused on ways in which gardens educate and challenge their visitors to consider their own sustainable behavior, such as educating and empowering their guests to switch to renewable energy, learn about sustainable individual travel, reduce food waste and more. For this survey, 61 institutions responded, representing 26 countries worldwide. 

In order to increase botanic gardens' visitor behavior encouragement, BGCI and Phipps will be launching a Sustainability Challenge later this year that seeks to create a community of best practices aimed at influencing visitor behavior change and measuring the impacts change in energy consumption, carbon emissions, responsible sourcing, and other measures. An online resource, The Climate Toolkit, is open for enrollment for information sharing and connecting with likeminded leaders.

For more information and to read the Technical Review, click here.

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New York Begins Solar Market Recovery With Permitting Fix for Large Scale Projects

Posted by Green Builder Staff

Apr 8, 2020 5:18:30 PM

New York State leaders enacted critical, pro-solar provisions as part of the New York state budget

“We commend Governor Cuomo, Speaker Heastie, and Majority Leader Stewart Cousins for passing permitting reforms that will fast-track permitting approvals for large scale solar projects. These are unprecedented times and we appreciate that amidst the COVID-19 crisis, the New York legislature and governor are prioritizing the long-term stability and growth of the solar market.

“Like other industries, the solar industry is not immune to the devastating impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. This week New York leaders made the difficult decision to halt construction projects, thereby shutting down solar installations.

"Incenting solar development is one part of our recovery but we’re going to need to continue to work with the governor and legislature, as well as the federal government to help the industry to rebuild the clean energy economy. When the state recovers from this public health crises, we will need to get New Yorkers back in their solar jobs so that we can jumpstart the state’s economy and lead New York’s recovery efforts. We look forward to working with New York leaders to get the solar industry back on track.”

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Earth Day Action: Whole Home Solutions to Fight Climate Change

Posted by Green Builder Staff

Apr 8, 2020 3:00:15 PM

From small changes to larger improvement projects, ways to increase sustainability starts at home.

This year, Earth Day falls on April 22. With the theme of “Climate Action,” it’s a prime opportunity for homeowners to consider how they can take steps to minimize climate impacts, right in their own homes.  Experts agree that climate action at home takes a top to bottom approach—ranging small, everyday lifestyle habits homeowners can adopt to re-thinking home improvement projects, including:

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Free Webinar: Demystifying Zero

Posted by Green Builder Staff

Apr 8, 2020 10:15:15 AM

Sam Rashkin of the DOE's Building Technologies Office gives guidance on how to join the zero movement.

with Sam Rashkin, Chief Architect
U.S. DOE Building Technologies Office

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There is no ‘Planet B’ for the 9 billion human inhabitants on earth expected just around the corner in 2050. And there is no path to a sustainable future for these inhabitants that does not involve buildings.

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Building Product Factories Remain at Full Speed Despite COVID-19 (So Far)

Posted by Green Builder Staff

Apr 2, 2020 4:01:02 PM

Mohawk Group factory in Glasgow, Virginia

How Building Product Manufacturers Are Working Though This Pandemic

By Jacob Louis Slevin (reprinted in part here--click link at bottom for full text)

With the outbreak of Covid-19, architects, designers and adjacent professionals are desperately searching for indicators to help determine just how seriously the industry will be impacted. Last week, I published a chart illustrating that specification activity that we’re tracking post outbreak is chugging along at a fairly similar pace as always. Though circumstances may change day-to-day, I’ve confirmed no change since March 19, which is encouraging. 

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How to Avoid Doubling Home Energy Use During the COVID-19 Lockdown

Posted by Green Builder Staff

Apr 1, 2020 10:06:33 AM

We thought this blog from Sense was worth reprinting. Many homeowners won't be able to afford extra utility costs, so taking proactive steps is essential--editor.

Six Ways You Can Cut Your Energy Use Today

 

by Gina Rezendes

 

While everyone is quarantined over the coming weeks in their homes, families may be wondering how to keep their energy costs down. Most advice about home energy savings involves big projects, like insulating your attic, replacing old windows or buying Energy STAR rated appliances. But what can you do right now at home to save energy, just by making a few changes? Sense has come up with six easy ways to save money by making a few adjustments at home. 

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MRA Offers 7 Tips For Tackling Home Improvement Projects From Home

Posted by Green Builder Staff

Mar 24, 2020 12:54:14 PM

From planning to working with contractors, industry experts offer 7 tips to keep projects tracking during challenging times

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