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Sustainable Design -™

Sustainable Design -™
Upgrade your home’s insulation and air-seal gaps and cracks sooner rather than later. This is one home improvement that will pay for itself relatively quickly and then continue to generate savings for as long as you live in your home. Even if a full upgrade is not in your budget this year, you can tackle several low- or no-cost improvements right now. Here are 10 tips to keep your home comfortable this winter. 1. Use the passive solar heat that’s available to you. If you have a sunroom or enclosed porch with a southern exposure, it can collect a great deal of heat. 2. In winter, a surprising amount of cold air can leak into your house around window and door openings, due largely to the fact that the framed (or rough) opening of a window or door is bigger than actual size of the window or door. 3. Baseboard and crown moldings that run along exterior walls are also sources of cold air infiltration. 4. 5. 6. Leaky, un-insulated ducts can reduce warm air flow where you need it. 7. 8. 9. 10.

Related:  HousingEco-Design, -livingGreen

What are Earthship Homes? Earthships are a type of sustainable and environmentally friendly home that is increasing in popularity, especially among those that wish to live a self-sufficient lifestyle. These cool little homes are constructed using natural and recycled materials like rammed earth, recycled cans and old tires, making them a cheaper and more sustainable style of building. Earthships are also built to generate their own power, harvest water, treat and contain sewage and are heated and cooled without using any kind of fuel. Permaculture Ethics and Design Principles Poster Permaculture Flower Poster See how permaculture can be applied with this free poster for you to print out. The Permacuture Flower poster is a great teaching tool to present to students, or as a reference. The flower illustrates how the permaculture journey, begining with the ethics and design principles, moves through the key domains required to create a sustainable culture. Examples of specific fields, design systems and solutions are listed to help understand the concept.

Solar Oval Cob Plan Small Cob Series No permit required - passive solar - small cob buildings SOLAR OVAL ONE is a compact passive solar design with a loft which can be an outbuilding for many possible uses. It has many valuable and green/sustainable features: Building with cob allows the use of local sustainable materials. In many areas the earth at your site can be used and only water, sand and straw will need to be brought to your site to make your cob. Solar Site Survey Search The Renewable Energy site for Do-It-Yourselfers Path of Sun Across the Sky Note: If you never liked "Science Time", you may want to skip the next few paragraphs, and go right to "Obstacle Survey". The path of the sun across the sky changes with the time of year. This is why its important to do this obstacle survey, and not just stick your head out the window and see what the sun is shining on today.

A Low Impact Woodland Home The site before starting Hole dug and level, post positions marked out, dry stone foundation walls down, first retaining wall built against front bank. 30 or so small trees and a bit of chainsawing later. Lift logs, prop up, nail together and continue until no longer wobbly. Split logs over the top and palettes on the floor. Bees and Permaculture Article and Film- Brigit Strawbridge We are very proud to have a guest post this week by Brigit Strawbridge on Bees and Permaculture…. First up we have a film of a great talk that Brigit did about bees at the Sunrise Off Grid festival in 2011, followed by a article by Brigit on Bees and Permaculture, a great resource for all bee lovers out there. A quick note, Brigit contacted me to say that at the start of the film she says, there are 200,000 types of bees, but actually it’s 20,000, but it would be great if there was 200,000 Bees and permaculture: I have to admit to being just a little obsessed with bees.

Green Roofs Are Changing Architecture: Kowloon Rail Terminus © Aedas It used to be that roofs were up top where nobody could see them, covered in gravel and full of mechanical equipment. Architectural renderings were pretty much all shot from eye level. Housebuilders go back to basics by using traditional methods and materials Families unable to afford their own homes are turning their backs on the housing market and winding the clock back, building their own shelters using traditional methods and materials including mud, straw and wood. The trend for designing homes using natural local materials is a reaction to spiralling housing costs, according to the people who train “have-a-go” builders in historic construction techniques. The movement is even influencing major developers, who are investigating ways to use natural products to meet modern building standards. Charlotte Eve, the co-founder of Edwards and Eve Cob Building, says she and her partner have trained thousands of people to build modern, liveable homes using earth dug straight from the ground. They extended their own home in Norfolk using the technique and have since taught others to build cob houses that are naturally energy efficient and have a low carbon footprint – for as little as £20,000. In pictures: Traditional construction materials

The Seemingly Simple GO Home is a LEED Platinum House That Packs a Green Energy Punch Photo credit: Trent Bell The bright red GO Home in Belfast, Maine was recently selected as the LEED for Homes Project of the Year for 2011. Completed by GO Logic, the seemingly simple house packs an impressive renewable energy punch and is a LEED Platinum and Passive House certified residence. Simple, Modern & Green: Desert Dream House Design Designing and building a home in the high desert is challenging enough thanks to extreme temperature shifts, but all the more so for those who do not want to simply shut themselves off from their surroundings and live in an air-conditioned box – like the engaged clients who hired architect Lloyd Russell to design their sustainable desert residence. A humble rusted metal canopy covers the house itself, providing essential shade to the entire structure as well as all exterior porches and patios. Combined with full-height sliding walls and windows, this plan enables the home to be cooled passively but also lends it a rustic aesthetic shell that blends it with the surrounding landscape and historical desert industrial and farm buildings. The home is populated with all kinds of quirky recycled materials and fixtures, a strange blend of modern and traditional in its look as well as its structure and other physical components.

Traditional building materials and design Earth-related building materials. In many non-urbanised areas in India, East Africa and South America, raw earth is abundant resource, which has popularly been used as building material. Over times, modern technologies have renovated the use of raw earth materials to improve their performance. For example, raw earth materials are converted into compressed earth blocks, made of a semi-dry mix of clay and sand and produced using a mechanised hydraulically compressed block machine. These blocks are reported to have a load-bearing strength two-thirds that of concrete masonry blocks (Mehta and Bridwell, 2004).

This Amazing Invention Is Saving Countless Lives After Typhoon Haiyan When natural disaster strikes, one of the first and most significant casualties is clean water: Humans can only go so long without liquids; as days pass without functioning infrastructure, bacteria spread and multiply, as does the threat of disease. Large aid organizations’ answer has often been to send 747s stocked with cases of bottled water to the affected areas. But drop-offs like that can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars and leave behind a stream of plastic waste.

Going Green Underground: Eco-Retro Earth House Designs They may look a bit dated at first, or at least more whimsical than required for functional living. Still, these earth houses have more to offer than custom curves and a unique aesthetic – including a set of design philosophies, strategies and tactics that are far from just superficial nods to sustainable trends. The designs take everything into account from fire and earthquake protection to integral insulation-efficient arches and buffer rooms for energy-free temperature control. While not every Erdhaus is actually built under the existing ground on a site, they are all tied to their earthen surroundings by sloping sheaths of greenery.

About: What We Do – Open Building Institute PHOTOSBarn Raising photo by Alexander W. Galbraith. Group Photo of Aquaponic Greenhouse Workshop by Joshua Langevin. Aerial photos of Aquaponic Greenhouse Workshop by Reid da Silva. 3D MODELS Most furniture, decor and plants used in 3D models by the SWEET HOME 3D community.