Grist picked up an article published by Portland NGO, New Building Institute (NBI), about how one can ‘future-proof’ a building making it more sustainable and less impactful to environment. Part of this future proofing involves creating energy rather than just burning it.
Quote, “Turns out, that’s already well underway: The number of buildings constructed so ingeniously that they sometimes feed energy to the grid has nearly doubled in the last two years. The nonprofit New Buildings Institute keeps a list of these “zero energy” offices, schools, and libraries. In 2018, there were 67 large buildings around the United States and Canada that got the stamp of approval for meeting this mark over a full year. Since then, 136 have hit that target. And there are more than 500 other buildings around the U.S. on track to join them. They’re popping up all over the continent, like a strange form of measles that makes countries healthier.”
NBI gives 5 ideas: Design for disaster, an airtight jacket, extracting heat from winter air, working with the sun, and low carbon materials.
None of those are rocket science, and the closing statement on the low carbon materials is priceless, quote: “As builders do their research they are hopeful: Done right, each new home could store more carbon than it gives off. By substituting sustainably harvested timber for concrete and steel, for instance, buildings could shift from being part of the problem to being part of the solution.’
Disclosure: My daughter is an NBI employee