Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Federal R&D Agenda for Net Zero Green Buildings

I was reading this report recently about the Federal R&D Agenda for Net Zero High Performance Green Buildings published in a variety of online sources in October of 2008. It identifies an achievable forward looking vision for federal buildings over the next generation. It comprehensively surveys the existing landscape of current High Performance Building initiatives throughout Federal Government and private sectors. What's notable is this was done before the current Obama Administration had been elected and likely represents a year or more cross agency collaboration and reflection. Hopefully this report will be updated and re-examined over the next year or so.

With net-zero buildings, buildings which produce equal or greater energy than they use within a given year, there lies hope for significant energy use reduction and potential for positively impacting greenhouse gas emissions. The report corroborates the largest potential for change is in increasing energy efficiency especially of existing buildings through retrofits and renovations rather than new construction.

This agenda in spirit hopefully will continue to drive innovation both in the public and private sectors, including higher education throughout the next 5-10 years and beyond. It identifies major R&D initiatives with various branches of government connected to the building and construction process. It also shares major implementation strategies which are also underway.

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