What home for this small
planet
would John Muir,
Clara Barton, and
John Kenneth Galbraith build?
A Zero Energy apartment
building,
of course.

“Ann Edminster is a true pioneer in the green homes field: based on her own hands-on experience, she spots trends and opportunities years ahead of others and is there waiting when the ‘leaders’ arrive.”

– Rob Watson, CEO
EcoTech International
and “Father of LEED”

Blog

Electrifying News!

lightning bolt | Dawid Cedler | Flickr

I’ve been talking to a lot of people lately about electrifying — that is, building an all-electric new home or eliminating natural gas and propane appliances in their existing homes. That’s something I plan to do myself any day now!
Meanwhile, for those building new or buying new appliances, I encourage choosing electric options. In case you’re not already of the same mind, here are my reasons:
1. I live in California, where we are rapidly moving towards cleaner and cleaner electricity production. Already 30% of our electricity is “clean,” i.e., produced by renewable energy sources such as wind turbines and photovoltaics, and Governor Brown recently signed legislation committing us to a 100% clean electric grid by 2045. Many other states will inevitably follow suit.
2. The International Panel on Climate Change has told us we have 12 years to throttle back fossil fuel emissions to prevent catastrophic climate change — but have you noticed that each time the IPCC reports, that time window gets smaller? I mean, smaller by more than the time elapsed since their preceding report! That means we probably REALLY have 5-10 years to cut emissions. Drastically.
3. Gas combustion in buildings is a very, very large fraction of our overall societal emissions. This is a part of the equation that as individuals we have the ability to change.
The single biggest objection raised to going all-electric is, “I can’t stand cooking on an electric range.” Here’s the good news: cooking on today’s magnetic induction ranges, although they do plug in, is otherwise a dramatic improvement over not only old-style electric cooking, but also over residential gas stoves. Everyone I know who has switched says they will never go back. I can’t wait to switch for the easier cleanup alone!!
Here are a couple of recent articles about induction cooking for your reading pleasure:
GO ELECTRIC! 
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I took the plunge into green building in the early 90s and felt completely at home in that pool from the first dive! Here was the convergence of my architecture background, my lifelong passion to protect the natural world, and my insatiable drive for order, efficiency, and the elimination of waste of all kinds.

After completing each major project, I’ve asked myself, “What’s next? What needs a big push now to help steer the building industry along a more sustainable course?”

In recent years, I saw zero energy building design as the most powerful vector for reducing building sector carbon emissions. The field is rapidly evolving, I’m seeing notable progress in
acceptance and implementation, and new
opportunities are continually emerging.

We now know what it takes to build
zero-energy homes, but zero-energy
communities pose new and
fascinating challenges
– both political
and technical. Government agencies and
nonprofits across North America are working
on creative solutions, and I get to play!
What could be better?!
Green Building