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I first became interested in zero energy buildings in 2003. There were several things that pulled me into the concept, and probably the most compelling aspect was the scale of the change. At the time, I was managing a municipal green building program and we were struggling to convince developers to make relatively minor incremental changes like using Low-E windows or high-efficiency furnaces. The notion of zero energy was such a radical leap forward. The other big thing that was intriguing to me, let’s face it, was that it was cool.

Zero energy as an aspiration, on-the-ground reality, and the climate solution movement intersection is at an interesting point in its history. Zero energy is all the rage, with many more organizations an...

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Photo credit: Marcela Gara, Resource Media

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In today’s market, would you ever consider buying a car that gets 12 miles to the gallon? Would you even consider designing, building or selling a car that gets 12 mpg? I believe 100% of us would respond with a resounding NO. Why? Because we all know there is a great selection of stylish, comfortable, reliable, and safe cars that are reasonably priced, and get up to 30 miles to the gallon, and others like hybrids that exceed 50 miles per gallon, and electric vehicles that approach 100 miles per charge. This generation of fuel-efficient cars offers great performance and is fun to drive. Even if you do a modest amount of driving, the money will favor a very fuel-efficient car, and the payback will be even faster if you drive a lot. B...

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Its big and small, Democratic and Republican cities are going green. Other states want to know how.

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Energy costs are one of the highest expenses schools face today. To offset them, some Tennessee schools are installing solar arrays and geothermal heating and cooling systems. (AP)
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For homeowners making a decision about how to finance a home purchase, options are relatively consistent regardless of where you live. Mortgages rates and terms are comparable across markets and more dependent on your own personal preferences than location—making a potential home buyer’s financing decision much more straightforward.
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This article was originally published by Elizabeth Manneh in Reader's Digest.
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The average home in the U.S. spends $2,200 on energy each year. That’s $183/month. Rather than spending this money on energy purchases, the smart approach is to invest it in greater energy efficiency. If you’re building a new home, it’s possible to reduce your energy purchases to zero with the buying power gained from that same $183. Here’s how it works. If you have a 30-year mortgage at about 4.2%, you can cover the additional payments on an increase in your loan of about $37,500 for energy saving features for your home. That’s enough to turn most home designs into zero energy homes, before incentives. Federal and state tax credits along with utility incentives will increase your savings even further. Th...

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Improving comfort, minimizing utility fees and reducing your own personal carbon footprint are all excellent reasons to think about insulation. But installing traditional forms of insulation into the walls of an existing home can become very challenging.

The most experienced experts often agree: it is almost impossible to guarantee the complete insulation of wall interiors. This is due to difficulties in getting behind the walls without destroying them. Even then, you don’t know what you’re going to find and how much costs you might incur.

So we ask ourselves, in this age of energy and ecological consciousness, what can be done?

As it turns out, Insulating Paint or thermal paint provides a wonderful alternative to traditiona...

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