What do we mean by "Zero-Energy?"
Green home design starts from insulation, air-circulation and other features that minimize homeowners' reliance on their utilities to deliver power. Less energy is green because the saved energy can be put to other uses, and it's also green in that it saves money on utility bills. Building for value and energy-efficiency are part of all Greenline homes.
Adding solar panels to collect energy can push that energy efficiency all the way to zero. It should be said that in Chicago's climate, this is not easy as, say California or other points west that get more sun than we do.
Here are a few resources that we've found inspiring or helpful in our own research and learning about zero energy:
- Zero Energy Project, which produced the video above, is an association that provides information and education to prospective home buyers, builders, designers, real estate professionals and advocates about zero net energy homes and to advance the prevalence of these homes in the mainstream housing market.
- Scientific American 8-21-15: Homes Make as Much Energy as They Use: Will zero-net-energy homes be the wave of the future? This article profiles zero-energy homeowners, developers, and scientists from the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy with the Department of Energy.
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