Every Precious Drop (2012) Ecohome Magazine - Alliance for Water ...

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A Magazine of The
American Institute of Architects
VISION 2020

YOUR SOURCE FOR GREEN PRODUCTS
+
TECHNOLOGY
www.ecohomemagazine.com
NOVEMBER

DECEMBER 2012
ANDREW MILES
Field Support/Forensics Engineer, DuPont
TM
Building Knowledge Center
Andrew Miles provides technical support to the DuPont

Tyvek
®
Specialist Network, DuPont
Sales and Marketing, architects, consultants, general contractors, and installers to help them
understand how to get the best results with DuPont products. His work includes mock wall
testing, addressing customer questions, training the trainer, and fi eld investigations related to the
use and performance of DuPont

Tyvek
®
products. He also works with the DuPont

Tyvek
®

Specialist Network and DuPont

Tyvek
®
Certifi ed Installers to consult on product installation and
performance attributes.
DANA PERRY
Research Investigator, DuPont
TM
Building Knowledge Center
As a research investigator concentrating on DuPont
TM
Tyvek
®
residential products and other
product development, Dana Perry is involved in design, project management, testing, product
approvals, and code approvals, as well as architectural integration and installation. Dana previously
focused on new-product development as part of the Technical Research and Development Group.
BENJAMIN MEYER, RA, LEED AP
Building Science Architect, DuPont
TM
Building Knowledge Center
As a building science architect with the DuPont
TM
Building Knowledge Center in Richmond, Va.,
Ben Meyer works with customers and industry associations to answer questions on commercial
building envelope design. He provides education on how building-envelope products work
together as a system to create a continuous air and water barrier and promotes the importance
of proper product selection and installation based on project requirements.
“I enjoy taking a problem, experimenting with design,
and then creating a physical solution.”
• Commercial building-envelope design
• Product selection and installation
• Air leakage prevention
His areas of expertise include:
“I enjoy collaborating with the product development
group. Some of the new product concepts they
develop come from conversations I’m having with
Tyvek
®
Specialists and other customers.”
• Mechanical engineering
• Field reconnaissance
• Product installation
His areas of expertise include:
“Everybody on our team has different areas of expertise and
a unique way of looking at things, and we all draw that from
each other.”
• Product testing and development
• Architectural integration
• Mechanical design
His areas of expertise include:
SOLVING THE WORLD’S
GREATEST CHALLENGES TOGETHER
DuPont is at the forefront of the search for sustainable building solutions that improve
comfort, reduce our environmental impact, and enhance life around the world.
Our partnership with EcoHome’s Vision 2020
builds on our commitment to work with the people,
companies, governments, and organizations shaping
the future of the construction industry. At DuPont, our
vision is to become the world’s most dynamic science
company, creating sustainable solutions essential to a
safer, healthier, better life for people everywhere. To
accelerate our progress toward this goal, we have created
the DuPont
TM

Building Knowledge Center, a forum for
DuPont building science experts, construction pros, and
companies to collaborate on and evaluate new ideas for
weatherization solutions that will lead to more energy-
effi cient and durable homes. The DuPont
TM
Building
Knowledge Center represents what DuPont has been
doing for years: collaborating with customers to resolve
their most diffi cult weatherization challenges.
Flip the page to meet the team of building scientists
and product experts shaping our sustainable vision.
»
LAURA M. DWYER
Manager, DuPont
TM
Building Knowledge Center
As manager of the DuPont
TM
Building Knowledge Center, Laura Dwyer draws on her
engineering background and extensive marketing experience to harness the skills and expertise
of DuPont Building Innovations professionals to better deliver enhanced value to customers
by sharing best practices in building science and product application knowledge.
THERESA WESTON, PH.D.
Research Fellow, DuPont Building Innovations
As a member of the DuPont
TM
Building Knowledge Center, Dr. Weston works with the industry to
develop building-envelope systems and construction methods to produce durable, energy-effi cient and
comfortable buildings. Her focus is building-envelope performance research and applications of water
and air barriers, fl ashing products, and insulation. In addition to conducting this research, Dr. Weston
manages DuPont Building Innovations advocacy related to building and energy codes and standards.
YOUR BUILDING
KNOWLEDGE
PARTNERS
The DuPont
TM
Building Knowledge Center is a collaborative network of experts
whose industry-shaping insights, tools, and resources are made accessible to
DuPont customers for their benefi t now and into our changing future. Meet
the team working to help our customers build more-sustainable homes.
“We get to help make buildings more energy effi cient, which
makes people more comfortable, reduces costs, and helps
reduce our reliance on fossil fuels.”
• Building-science value and benefi ts
• Building-envelope performance and
impact on energy effi ciency
• Sustainable structure market trends
• Industry impact of codes and
standards
Her areas of expertise include:
“There’s a real hunger for knowledge in this industry. Building
professionals are trying to do things differently and better,
because they really care about what they do.”
• Water management in building assemblies
• Energy effi ciency, and the durability of
buildings and the built environment
• Sustainable/green building
• Building and energy codes
Her areas of expertise include:
The DuPont™ Tyvek
®

Specialists Network
DuPont

Weatherization Systems are
backed by an elite team of highly trained
fi eld representatives who are available
to answer your weatherization-related
questions. From the latest updates
on building codes, to keeping up with
current trends and challenges, your local
DuPont

Tyvek
®
Specialist can provide
on-site consulting and training on DuPont


weatherization products to help make
sure your job gets done right.
To learn more, visit
www.buildingknowledge.dupont.com
MAKING SENSE OF COMPLICATED BUILDING CODES
AND STANDARDS IS NOW DOWN TO A SCIENCE.
To get your free Cracking the Code e-brochure and learn more about building walls that last and last, visit durablewall.tyvek.com
It’s a fact: building and energy codes that impact the walls you build are changing and becoming more demanding. Higher air-
leakage standards. Mandatory air infi ltration testing. Increased R-value requirements as high as R-25 in some climate zones.
Th ese changes may have big implications for the homes you build. But the DuPont™ Building Knowledge Center can help you
understand the new requirements and translate them into practical, science-based construction and weatherization practices.
It starts with the new Cracking the Code e-brochure and the DuPont™ CodeSense™ Durable Wall Builder tool. Along with
DuPont™ Tyvek® Weatherization Systems, they’re the keys to building more durable walls that meet the codes, your customers
and your commitment to quality.
© 2012 DuPont. All rights reserved. The DuPont Oval Logo, DuPont

, CodeSense

and Tyvek
®
are registered trademarks or trademarks of E. I. du Pont de Nemours and Company or its affi liates.
Circle no. 49
ADD DRAMA TO ANY SPACE.
Adding a VELUX No Leak skylight can have a dramatic eff ect on a room – one that no other
addition or renovation can make. And while the eff ects are dramatic, the skylight isn’t. That’s
because there are no leaks and a 10-year product and installation warranty to back it all up.
For details, go to
www.veluxusa.com
.
Download the VELUX Skylight
Planner app at the App Store or
Android Market to see the drama
a skylight can bring to any space.
©2012 VELUX Group
Circle no. 75
co
n
te
n
ts
3
ecohomemagazine.com november • december 2012
3
EcoHome (ISSN 1941-7470), is pu
bl
is
h
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six times per
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ear (Januar
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, Marc
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Han
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e
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Woo
d

L
LC, One Th
omas Circle NW, Suite 600, Washington, DC 20005. Volume 5, Number 6.
Th
C
op
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ri
gh
t 2012
by
Han
l
e
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Woo
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, LLC. Opinions expresse
d
are t
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ors or persons quote
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ffi
N
o
v
e
m
ber

D
ece
m
be
r 2
0
1
2
VISION
2
0
20
T
he leading voices of our industry lay out new metrics and
m
ilestones in 10 ke
y
areas on the road to sustainabilit
y.
ENERGY & CARBO
N
By Edward Mazria and Francesca Desmarais
E
nergy consumption is leveling off, but atmospheric carbon
levels are too high. What the building sector needs to do
t
o increase efficiency, expand sustainable design, and reduce
c
arbon levels to 350 ppm by 2030. Pg. 13
REGENERATIVE DESIGN
By Bob Berkebile
N
ew directions in design take their cues from the past and
lead us toward nurturing buildings, homes, and communities
co
nn
ected
wi
t
h na
tu
r
e
. Pg. 17
SUS
TAINABLE
CO
MM
U
NITIE
S
By Christopher Leinberger
Wh
y
d
eman
d
m
i
t
i
gat
i
on t
h
roug
h

d
eve
l
op
i
ng wa
lk
a
bl
e, trans
i
t
-
o
riented, urban communities is more effective in combating
cli
mate c
h
ange t
h
an supp
l
y-s
id
e strateg
i
es. Pg. 23
MATERIALS & RESOURCES
By Nadav Malin
T
ransparency soon will permeate the world o
f
buildin
g
p
roducts,
g
ivin
g
us nutrition-label-like sustainability data on
e
verythin
g
we use. Pg. 27
W
ATER EFFI
C
IEN
C
Y
By Mary Ann Dickinson, Carole Baker,
and Peter Mayer
H
ow
i
mprove
d
tec
h
no
l
og
i
es, po
li
c
i
es, an
d
pract
i
ces w
ill

h
e
lp
a
chieve new levels of water efficiency by 2020. Pg. 33
I
ND
OO
R ENVIR
O
NMENTAL
QU
ALITY
By David Jacobs
N
ew data shows health bene
f
its o
f
green home
f
eatures and
r
eveals cost bene
f
its in reduced health care expenses. Pg. 43
PR
O
DU
C
T
S

&
PERF
O
RMAN
C
E
By Alex Wilson and Peter Yost
B
y 2020 manufacturers will produce buildin
g
assemblies
w
ith tested performance values and hi
g
h-performance
p
roducts that res
p
ond to
m
ore strin
g
ent requirements
a
nd a focus on resilient desi
g
n. Pg. 47
COVER ILLUSTRATIO
N
:
CHRIS DENT; ABOVE IMAGES
:
ELI MEIR K
A
PL
A
N
BUILDING SYSTEMS RESEARC
H
By Michael Dickens
T
h
e growt
h

i
n systems t
hi
n
ki
ng ta
k
es
b
u
ildi
ng sc
i
ence
i
nto
the areas of air purification, rightsizing HVAC components,
an
d

h
ome energy management systems t
h
at can mon
i
tor
and control comfort, air quality, and moisture. Pg. 51
CODES
,
STANDARDS
,
& RATING
S
Y
S
TEM
S
By Sam Rashkin
H
ow new codes and evolvin
g
ratin
g
systems are addressin
g
the “house-as-a-s
y
stem” a
pp
roach to
p
er
f
ormance, and how
t
h
at w
ill
s
h
ape t
h
e
i
n
d
ustry over t
h
e next
d
eca
d
e. Pg. 55
MARKET TRAN
S
F
O
RMATI
ON
By Cliff Majersik
The drive to broader markets will be fueled by increased
code compliance, continued tax credits, the passa
g
e of the
SAVE Act, and the transformation of the appraisal and
finance processes. Pg. 59
DEPARTMENT
S
EDIT
O
R’
S
N
O
TE
The immense challen
g
es that face us are matched only
b
y
the o
pp
ortunities the
y

p
resent. Pg. 5
AIARCHITECT
E
xplorin
g
the link between sustainability and preservation
p
ractice. Pg. 9
THE VISION
2
0
2
0 TEA
M
A roundup of people and or
g
anizations who provided support
and
g
uidance for this year’s research. Pg. 64
www.Roseburg.com
Roseburg is one of North America’s single largest and most
diverse producers of “Green” wood products. From structural
construction to value added decorative hardwood and thermally
fused laminate panels, we manufacture over 30 FSC, NAUF, and
recycled green wood products that can contribute to LEED
®
credits.
Roseburg Green Wood Products
Firmly planted in the environment
TF 800-245-1115
Decorative
|
Construction
|
Industrial
W O O D P R O D U C T S
Visit us at
Greenbuild 2012
Booth #3475N
Circle no. 126
ecohomemagazine.com november • december 2012
5
editor’s
note
RICK SCHWOLSKY


Editor in Chief


rschwolsky@hanleywood.com
L
ast January we introduced a new
EcoHome editorial initiative called
Vision 2020 that launched a year
of exploration into the future of 10
critical areas of sustainability. We
enlisted renowned industry thought
leaders with specialties in each of these focus
areas as Vision 2020 chairs to share their work
and guide our research. Our joint mission has
been to create a road map to sustainability for
our industry by identifying where we need to be
by the year 2020 in order to be on track to reach
important environmental targets by 2030 and
beyond. Our research chairs defi ned new goals,
identifi ed the hurdles we must negotiate, and laid
out a path for us to follow, in many cases setting
new metrics and milestones along the way from
which we can measure our progress.
Over the past 10 months our Vision 2020
editorial team has published hundreds of
exclusive articles, interviews, white papers,
and videos exploring every aspect of advanced
sustainability that will play into our future from
regenerative design and community development
to building systems and product transparency to
water effi ciency and energy performance. We’ve
uncovered new research data in a wide range
of areas from biophilia and resiliency to indoor
environmental quality. And we’ve shared all of
this every day through www.ecohomemagazine.
com/vision-2020, our weekly e-newsletters, and
in each edition of this magazine.
In September we convened the fi rst Vision
2020 Sustainability Summit in Washington,
D.C., where our research chairs presented
reports on the future of their focus areas for
peer review by the other chairs, and as previews
of their reports for Hanley Wood’s chief editors
and sustainability teams from our seven
corporate sponsors. All of this leads to this
special Vision 2020 edition of EcoHome.
We have dedicated this entire issue to
share with you those fi nal reports from the
Sustainability Summit, authored by each of
our research chairs who present their unique
perspectives and projections and lay out the path
to follow toward a sustainable future.
We are proud to present this special issue
and the results of the fi rst year of the Vision
2020 program. With the invaluable help of
our section chairs, we’ve laid an incredible
foundation for ongoing Vision 2020 research
over the coming years as we will continue to
grow this program, track our progress, and
engage the challenges and opportunities that
will face us on the way forward.

NEW DIRECTIONS
I’d like to take a moment to let you know that
this is my last issue of EcoHome as editor in
chief and to introduce you to Katie Weeks,
editor in chief of our sister publication Eco-
Structure, who will lead the way for both of
our green building brands starting in January.
She has been fully focused on high-level
sustainability and environmental building for
years, and you’ll see her expertise, passion, and
precision for yourself when she launches an
exciting new platform that brings EcoHome
and Eco-Structure content to our professional
green building audiences every day—fast, fresh,
and focused.
My work on EcoHome over these past fi ve
years has been incredibly fulfi lling, bringing
my career full circle from my start in the 1970s
as a builder exploring the early practices and
principles of green building. EcoHome has
allowed me to reconnect with lifelong friends
and colleagues—but more important, with my
own personal commitment to our planet and
concern for its health. And so while this job may
be ending, my work will go on. As EcoHome’s
editor-at-large I will continue to contribute to its
mission and lead Vision 2020 and Th e Hanley
Award for Vision and Leadership in Sustainable
Housing into the future. Th ank you all for your
support and engagement over the years. Your
work has inspired mine.
The Future in Focus

VISION 2020 VIDEO SERIES
Be sure to see our brand-new series of sustainability
videos highlighting the exclusive presentations
from the fi rst Vision 2020 Sustainability Summit in
Washington, D.C., at www.ecohomemagazine.com/
vision-2020.
ecohomemagazine.com november • december 2012
6
homeeco
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E
DITORIAL ADVISORY BOAR
D
P
ierce Jones
,
Ph.D
.
D
irector, the University of Florida’s
E
xtension Service Pro
g
ram for
R
esource Efficient Communities
Ma
rk L
a
Li
be
r
te
P
rinci
p
al
Construction Instruction Inc
.
N
ate Kredich
V
ice President Residential Market
D
eve
l
opment
U
.S. Green Bui
ld
ing Counci
l
Stuart McDonald
V
ice President o
f
Operation
s
Generation Homes
R
obert P
f
liege
r
Se
ni
o
r Vi
ce
Pr
es
i
de
n
t
N
ational Association o
f
Home Builders
D
oug Se
i
ter
Fou
n
de
r
A
ustin Green Builder Pro
g
ram
Ste
v
e
n Win
te
r
P
residen
t
Steven W
i
nter Assoc
i
ate
s
Gary Zajice
k
V
ice President o
f
Construction
V
eri
d
ian Homes
EDITOR IN CHIE
F
Rick Schwolsk
y
303.473.9640 • rschwolsky@hanleywood.com
CHIEF DESIGN DIRECTOR Gillian Berenso
n
202.729.3624 • g
b
erenson@
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an
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eywoo
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.co
m
MANA
G
IN
G
EDIT
O
R C
h
ristine Ser
l
in
2
08.288.0399 • cserlin@hanle
y
wood.co
m
S
ENIOR EDITO
R

Je
nni
fe
r
Good
m
a
n
2
02.736.3358 • jgoodman@hanleywood.co
m
CO
NTRIBUTING EDIT
O
R
S
Rich Binsacca
,
M
ark LaLiberte, Gord Cooke, Justin Wilson,
F
ernando Pagés Ruiz
DIRE
C
T
O
R
O
F PR
O
DU
C
TI
O
N AND
PRODUCTION TECHNOLOGIESCat
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y Un
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erwoo
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PR
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N MANAGE
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D TRAFFIC MANAGER Daisri
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REPRESS MANAGE
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ett
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UDIENCE MARKETING DIRECTOR C
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ERVI
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ROUP PRESIDENT
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arren P. Nesbitt
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wood.co
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GROUP PUBLISHER, RESIDENTIAL
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Hanle
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ia
PRESIDENT
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CONTEN
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PRESIDENT
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ICE PRESIDENT
,
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DATABA
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E DEVEL
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IDENT, PR
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Nic
k
E
l
sener
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ICE PRESIDENT
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ei
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a Harri
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ICE PRESIDENT
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FINANCIAL PLANNING &
ANALY
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o
n Kr
a
f
t
P
ublished b
y
Hanle
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Wood, LL
C
CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICE
R
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ld
stone
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I
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C
HAIRMA
N
Fran
k
Anto
n
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HIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER Matt
h
ew F
ly
n
n
PRESIDENT
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And
y
Rei
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SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT
,
CORPORATE SALES
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f
V
ICE PRESIDENT, FINANC
E
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s
VICE PRESIDENT, GENERAL COUNSEL
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ic
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ae
l
Ben
d
er
IF IT’S WORTH BUILDING
IT’S WORTH
BUILDING
RIGHT.
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THE FEELING OF MORE WATER.
WI THOUT USI NG MORE WATER.
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Circle no. 36
the greenest construction project starts with an existing
building. Th at much is certain. Building reuse conserves resources
and energy while diverting massive amounts of waste from the
landfi ll—as preservation architects are quick to point out. In fact, the
perspectives of architects who specialize in preservation and those
who specialize in sustainability (often portrayed as contrasting) share
a view through the same window. But it’s the frame of the window
that’s up for grabs. Sometimes literally.
“With some of the certifi cation programs like LEED, there’s been
a huge emphasis on replacing windows in historic buildings, which
I think is a mistake,” says Glenn Keyes, AIA, a preservation architect
in Charleston, S.C. Keyes readily admits that new windows are more
effi cient, but are almost always clad in vinyl or aluminum and don’t
match the historic windows.
“Windows are such a character-defi ning element in historic
buildings,” he says. “Instead of replacing them, a second pane may
be routed into the sash if it’s thick enough—which is often the case
with early-20th-century buildings, for instance.” Another alter-
native, according to Keyes, is an interior storm window behind
the historic window to improve effi ciency without compromising
integrity. Besides the window issue, there are other points of con-
tention. Th e preservation community is often regarded as stubborn
and unyielding to compromise—even when the expense of replacing
features on buildings with authentic materials is hard to justify.
On the other hand, the sustainability camp is sometimes seen
as shortsighted in its emphasis on measuring energy effi ciency by
square footage, which may encourage larger-than-necessary projects
and the use of cheaper materials with shorter service lives, according
to Jean Carroon, FAIA, a Boston architect, chair of the AIA Historic
Resources Committee, and author of Sustainable Preservation: Green-
ing Existing Buildings.
“Th e preservation community represents a kind of frontline
protest against needless waste and our throwaway culture,” she says.
But Carroon believes there are reasons for each camp to be encour-
aged. Many older buildings are inherently effi cient, Keyes points out.
“A lot of what’s being proposed today has been practiced historically
before mechanical systems became prevalent for heating and cool-
ing,” he says, noting that a lot of homes built between 1960 and 1990
are incredibly ineffi cient. “But even with ineffi cient buildings,” he
says, “there’s a lot to overcome when you tear them down, and it’s
almost always better all around to improve what’s there.”
Preservation Green Lab, a Seattle-based research initiative
launched by the National Trust for Historic Preservation in 2009,
agrees. In its January 2012 report, “Th e Greenest Building: Quantify-
ing the Environmental Value of Building Reuse,” the National Trust
claims that “it takes 10 to 80 years for a new building that is 30 per-
cent more effi cient than an average-performing existing building to
overcome, through effi cient operations, the negative climate change
impacts related to the construction process.”
Th e benefi ts of reuse are harder to quantify. “I think the intangi-
ble quality that doesn’t fall strictly into sustainability or preservation
is the role that historic homes play in the tapestry of a community,”
says Kevin Eronimous, AIA, a sustainability architect in Denver
who lives in a renovated 1908 bungalow in a neighborhood of older
homes. “Living in a walkable neighborhood within fi ve miles of
downtown, connected by a bike path, has a value that can’t be mea-
sured in energy and materials.”—Ben Ikenson
Evergreening
Between sustainability and
preservation practice
illustration: sarah hanson


9
november/december 2012
ecohomemagazine.com november • december 2012
10
ecohomemagazine.com
11
s pecial report:
vision 2020
november • december 2012
VISION 2020
THE LEADING VOICES OF OUR INDUSTRY
SHARE THEIR VISIONS FOR THE
FUTURE IN 10 CRITICAL AREAS AND LAY
OUT THE ROAD MAP TO SUSTAINABILITY
FOR 2020 AND BEYOND
B
y almost any measure, the choices we make and the path
we follow over the next decade as stewards of this planet
will defi ne the quality and balance of life for generations
to come, touching every man, woman, child, and species
at every corner of the Earth. And as we approach a wide range of
tipping points—from atmospheric carbon levels and their projected
impacts on climate change to unsustainable resource consumption
and its impact on the natural world—the need to set and update cru-
cial metrics and milestones from which we can track our progress
becomes ever more urgent.
It is with this sense of urgency that we established Vision 2020 and
enlisted renowned thought leaders in 10 areas of study to guide our re-
search and help create a road map for the building industry that would
lead us toward regeneration and sustainability. We took our cues from
our friends at Architecture 2030 who, by introducing the 2030 Chal-
lenge, gave our industry its fi rst performance-based environmental
timeline from which to navigate, setting the year 2030 as the target to
achieve a carbon-neutral building sector. Our goal was to see where
we need to be by 2020 in order to be on track to achieve the 2030 goals.
As you’ll see in the feature articles that follow, written by our
Vision 2020 chairs, we’ve made good progress already, especially in
terms of understanding the challenges we face and the opportunities
they present. Th ese will be at the foundation of our future progress as
we strive to achieve the new goals that each of these leaders lay out
in their reports, and negotiate the hurdles they identify that would
hinder our mission.
We are proud to present the results of this year’s Vision 2020 re-
search—the inaugural report that will be the basis of ongoing research
to track our progress on the path to a sustainable future.
ILLUSTRATION BY CHRIS DENT
PHOTOGRAPHS BY ELI MEIR KAPLAN
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Circle no. 52
ecohomemagazine.com november • december 2012
13
energy
&
carbon
M
ore than half the world’s population, or 3.5 billion people,
live in cities. By 2020 this number is expected to rise to
4.25 billion, and by 2030 to 5 billion. By 2030 a stagger-
ing 900 billion square feet of new building space will be
constructed in cities worldwide (including the replacement of old
buildings), an area equal to three times the total U.S. building stock.
We have a choice. How we plan to build and rebuild our communi-
ties will determine whether this unprecedented growth will promote
sustainability and enhance our quality of life, or accelerate environ-
mental degradation and lead to increased human suff ering.

Let’s start with the good news. According to the U.S. Energy
Information Administration (EIA), CO
2
emissions in the American
building sector have fl attened and are expected to remain fl at over
the next decade. Th e driver of this trend is the dramatically declin-
ing demand for energy due to slower growth in construction, in-
creases in building design and energy effi ciency, growth in renew-
able energy production, and “fuel switching” at power plants from
burning coal to burning natural gas.
Th e U.S. building stock is projected to increase 22.6% by 2030. If
the best available demand technologies are incorporated in building
design, energy consumption is expected to drop 12% and CO
2
emis-
sions 21.8% below 2005 levels by 2030. Th ese EIA projections do
not include sustainable planning applications or incorporate pas-
sive heating and cooling, natural ventilation, daylighting, or spatial
confi guration and site design strategies. With a growing number of
architects and planners employing these strategies to meet the 2030
Challenge targets, we expect actual energy consumption and emis-
sions in the building sector to drop substantially lower.
Th e problem centers on energy demand. Climate scientists tell us
that the way to preserve a planet resembling the one we have known
for the past 12,000 years is to phase out the use of coal and uncon-
ventional fossil fuels (oil shale, tar sands, and shale gas) that do not
capture and sequester CO
2
. Th is must be accomplished by 2030.
Cities and urban developments, dense networks of buildings and
infrastructure, are responsible for about 70% of all global energy
BY EDWARD MAZRIA AND FRANCESCA DESMARAIS
The Next Built
Environment,
Today
ecohomemagazine.com november • december 2012
14
energy
&
carbon
consumption and CO
2
emissions . Buildings consume about half (48.7%) of all
energy produced in the United States and produce half (46.7%) of all CO
2
emis-
sions; globally the percentages are similar. Th e operation of buildings alone use
approximately 76% of all electricity produced at power plants in the country.
Creating livable, healthy, and sustainable cities, reducing fossil fuel energy
consumption, and providing access to renewable energy sources are urgent
matters of urban planning and building design.

THE NUMBER
:
350
Th e widely recognized maximum threshold for the “safe” long-term level
of atmospheric CO
2
in the atmosphere is 350 ppm. Th is comes from an un-
derstanding of the Earth’s climate history and observations of current and
ongoing climactic changes. Currently the amount of CO
2
in the atmosphere
is 390 ppm, which has resulted in global temperatures rising 0.8 degrees C
above pre-industrial levels. Scientists advise that avoiding irreversible and
dangerous climate change is possible if we stabilize and then return CO
2
lev-
els in the atmosphere to 350 ppm or less.
Th e risk we face is that unless quick action is taken, the U.N. Human
Settlements Programme (UN-HABITAT) warns of a “deadly collision be-
tween climate change and urbanization,” with many communities, towns,
and cities around the globe vulnerable to increased heat waves, heavy rain-
fall, fl ooding, drought, and inundation from sea level rise. Food and water
supplies, physical infrastructure, transport, ecosystems, goods and services,
and access to aff ordable and dependable energy supplies will all be aff ected.
TOWARD 2020 AND BEYOND
:
MEETING THE CHALLENGES
Th e 2030 Challenge defi nes the design energy and CO
2
emissions reduction
targets for new buildings and major building renovations—a 60% energy
consumption reduction today, incrementally increasing to carbon neutral by
2030. Architecture 2030 has also set the 2030 Challenge targets for planning
and building products:
• For planning: a 10% reduction of energy and water consumption and
emissions from transportation for existing developments and communities,
incrementally increasing to 50% by 2030; and
• For products: a 30% reduction of embodied carbon below a product cat-
egory average, incrementally increasing to 50% by 2030.
All the top 10 U.S. architecture/engineering fi rms—and 75% of the top
20—have embraced the 2030 Challenge. According to the annual 2012
Design Intelligence survey, 50% of all architecture fi rms queried were com-
mitted to the 2030 Challenge targets. Th is year, more than 240 fi rms are par-
ticipating in the AIA 2030 Commitment , measuring and reporting on fi rm
progress toward meeting the 2030 Challenge targets. Th e federal govern-
ment requires that all new federal buildings and major renovations meet the
2030 Challenge targets, and California has mandated that all new residential
and commercial buildings be net-zero energy by 2020 and 2030, respectively.
Many cities, states, and counties have also adopted the Challenge targets.
To ensure that the adoption and implementation of the 2030 Challenge
progresses, the AIA+2030 Professional Educational Series , a course in the
REVISED PROJECTIONS

Projections for energy
consumption and carbon
emissions within the building
sector for 2030 have dropped due
to a slower rate of construction,
improved energy performance of
new and existing buildings through
effi ciency measures, and an
increasing reliance on renewable
energy resources. But even
further reductions are possible
by implementing best-practice
technologies and a continued
shift toward lower emission fuels.
ENERGY AND CARBON CONSUMPTION
U.S. Building Stock/Energy Consumption/Emissions
Annual Energy Outlook 2005

Energy Consumption Projections
(2005 to 2030)
Annual Energy Outlook 2012

Energy Consumption Projections
(2005 to 2030)
Using the Best Available Demand Technol
ogy
% Increase
+50%
+40%
+30%
+20%
+10%
2005 Level
Building
Floor Area
Building
Floor Area
CO
2
Emissions
Lower
Building Stock
Projection
Building
Energy
Effi ciency Building
Energy
Effi ciency,
Renewables,
and Lower
Emissions Fuels
CO
2
Emissions
Energy
Consumption
Energy
Consumption
22.6%
-12%
-21.8%
47.4%
44.4%
53.1%
SOURCE: ARCHITECTURE 2030, ENERGY INFORMATION ADMINISTRATION,
ANNUAL ENERGY OUTLOOK
ecohomemagazine.com november • december 2012
15
BETTER UNDERSTANDING OF CARBON
FOOTPRINTS WILL DRIVE INNOVATION IN SUPPLY CHAINS
TOWARD LOW
-
CARBON PRODUCTS.
design and technology applications needed to produce next-generation
buildings, is being off ered in 23 markets across the United States and Can-
ada, including Seattle, New York, Boston, Denver, Atlanta, Washington,
D.C., Toronto, and Houston. Planning is under way to expand the series
abroad, where there is increasing interest in the program.
2030 Districts , large urban areas in Seattle, Cleveland, and Pittsburgh
committed to reducing their energy, water consumption, and CO
2
emissions
as called for in the 2030 Challenge for Planning, are increasing in number
with new 2030 Districts forming in Los Angeles and Bellevue, Wash.
In order to certify that low-carbon building products meet the 2030
• dramatically decarbonize energy consumption;
• reduce their environmental exposure;
• ensure an accessible, reliable, and renewable energy and water supply;
• promote the preservation and restoration of natural habitats and eco-
systems; and
• address the progressing vagaries of climate.
Th e resulting framework entitled the 2030 Palette , due to be launched in
2013, is structured as a free, noncommercial, interactive Web platform. It
is a highly visual program containing a complete range of planning, infra-
structure, and building design strategies and principles, including design-
Challenge for Products , scientifically credible Product Category Rules
(PCRs) standardizing the calculation method for a given product catego-
ry must be established. Industries, such as concrete, fl ooring, windows,
and gypsum board, are writing PCRs that will allow manufacturers to
communicate comparable carbon footprints to architects and specifi ers.
Having a better understanding of a carbon footprint will further drive
innovation in supply chains, manufacturing processes, and materials to-
ward low-carbon products.
Historically, major transformations in the built environment originate
from within the sector. Our contemporary built world has its origins in
the modern movement, articulated by leading architects and planners
in the 1920s and ’30s such as Walter Gropius and the Bauhaus, Le Cor-
busier’s Towards a New Architecture, and the International Congress of
Modern Architecture as described in the Athens Charter. Many of the
underlying guiding principles of the movement made possible by urban-
ization, the Industrial Revolution, and fossil fuel energy—divorce of wall
and structure, transparent wall, free plan, function-based zones, high-
rise building blocks, and street/road design for effi cient vehicular circu-
lation—are with us today.
Likewise, today, to accelerate the momentum in transitioning to a
more sustainable world, two requisite actions must quickly be realized: the
codifi cation of a new shared vision by leaders and practitioners in the ar-
chitecture and planning community, and the dissemination of the guiding
principles of that vision.

A SHARED VISION
:
THE 2030 PALETTE
Along these lines Architecture 2030 is working with colleagues to iden-
tify, aggregate, organize, and integrate best practices into a shared vision, a
design and planning set of guiding principles, strategies, and specifi c
system applications for regions, cities, towns, districts, and buildings
worldwide that:
• create vibrant and sustainable built environments;
• exist within their ecological capital;
driven renewable energy applications, for various climates and cultures
that meet or exceed the targets of the 2030 Challenge.
The 2030 Palette is organized to make highly complex and multi-
dimensional information readily accessible. Since design and planning are
primarily visual activities, the Palette is structured as a visual network of
interrelated elements. Each element in the network contains a written rule
or recommendation, images and graphics representing the physical appli-
cation of the rule, as well as more detailed information for implement-
ing the rule. Users will be able to explore region-specifi c environmental/
cultural conditions and optimize design eff orts with proven strategies, sys-
tems, and actions.
As a dynamic and interactive platform with unrestricted access, the 2030
Palette will be continually adjusted and expanded over time. It will form
a uniquely patterned, cohesive, living framework for making better design
and planning decisions. 2030 followers will be able to virtually congregate
at a Palette blog, a “seeding” ground for enthusiasts to submit content, new
tools, and applications, and promote, educate, and support localization ef-
forts around the world. It is a place where new sustainable design practices
can emerge and gain momentum.
As with the 2030 Challenge, 2030 education programs, and 2030 Dis-
tricts, the 2030 Palette is not just a set of targets, actions, or applications; it
is in fact a mind-set leading to a global paradigm shift about the intimate
connection between the built and natural worlds.
We know the number, it is 350 ppm CO
2
, and we realize the risk as danger-
ous climate change.
We understand the problem of energy demand and have accepted the chal-
lenge, the 2030 Challenge. And, we are in fact making progress: Th e demand
for energy in the U.S. building sector is leveling out, and CO
2
emissions are
dropping. We need to step it up to create the next built environment, today.

Edward Mazria is founder and CEO of Architecture 2030. Francesca
Desmarais is director of the 2030 Challenge for Products. Th ey are Vision 2020
co-chairs for Energy and Carbon.
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Circle no. 87
B
y 2020, the year of perfect vision, homes in demand will
bear little resemblance to those in which I and
my contemporaries were raised. Housing will be
healthier for residents, the community, and the
planet, and buyers will require site-specific, performance-
based information via mobile applications that will in-
form their decisions about which home to rent or purchase.
The same technology will remotely control the comfort of the
residence and the operation of its appliances and security
systems while simultaneously negotiating with utility pro-
viders for clean power at the best rate. Amenities that cur-
rently are not well defined will inf luence consumer decisions.
Requests for net-positive energy and water will be common,
and interest in proximity to work, good food, recreation,
and entertainment will be the norm.

A BRIEF HISTORY OF HOUSING
Some of these amenities were available in our earliest homes—
cave dwellings and other shelters found or created. In some ways,
we did not know how good we had it; the best caves off ered day-
light, natural ventilation, and passive conditioning. Th ere were
no lawns to mow; no mortgages, utility bills, insurance, or taxes
to pay; and no foreclosures. Scientists are discovering that there
were other important benefi ts we are only beginning to appreci-
ate, including a strong sense of community, quality time with
our families, and living in nature. Noted biologist E.O. Wilson
uses the term biophilia to describe a belief that humans inher-
ently enjoy nature, and his hypothesis suggests that we gain bal-
ance and well-being from living in natural environments.
As the human family grew, so did the need for housing, and
when all the caves were taken, Homo sapiens began to demon-
strate their resourcefulness with a variety of constructed shel-
ters. Beautiful designs uniquely suited to culture, function,
climate, and local renewable resources can be found through-
out the world. Sophisticated use of natural systems and local
BY BOB BERKEBILE, FAIA
Regenerative
Housing
by 2020
regenerative
design
november • december 2012
17
ecohomemagazine.com
ecohomemagazine.com november • december 2012
18
regenerative
design
materials and the ability of early cultures to create comfort, a sense of
community, and security by design are remarkable.
Th e dawn of Western scientifi c thought and the Industrial Revolution
transformed our concept of shelter and, by extension, our relationship
with nature. Nature, which had been worshiped, feared, and celebrated
as the source of beauty and life, became a resource to be managed, or
“bent to our will,” as Francis Bacon put it. As a direct result, our views of
natural resources, home, and community changed dramatically.
For the first time, the temperature of our homes could be controlled
in summer and winter simply by dialing the desired temperature rather
than by hauling wood, coal, or ice. Our descendants loved the ease of
these new creature comforts and were quick to embrace them. It was
seductive; life was good. With this new comfort, however, came hidden
challenges: separation from nature and unprecedented consumption,
waste, and pollution. Th oughtful designers attempted to address these is-
sues with new concepts for living, such as Le Corbusier’s Villa Savoye, “a
machine for living,” Buckminster Fuller’s Dymaxion House, and Frank
Lloyd Wright’s Usonian houses. Th ese new ideas and numerous others
were overpowered by cultural shift s supported by market forces, federal
policies, and corporate interests.
Following World War II, a spike in home construction was triggered
by the GI Bill’s low-interest home loans and access to new land funded by
the National Interstate and Defense Highways Act, yielding an explosion
of highways, housing, and suburban development.
These events redefined the American dream, created a dependence
on automobiles, and increased the operating cost of city services due to
larger service areas and decreased densities. A rise in population and
aff luence over the last half century accelerated sprawl development
with larger homes, more cars, and more stuff , resulting in signifi cant in-
creases in the consumption of critical resources and a crippling depen-
dence on fossil fuels.
One decade into the 21st century, it is clear that this development trend
is not sustainable for many reasons, the most acute being disruptive
climate change. Th e causes are well known and linked directly to this de-
velopment pattern and fossil fuel–dependent lifestyle. We have dramati-
cally increased the release of carbon (280 ppm at the dawn of the Industrial
Revolution, 340 ppm 35 years ago when Wendell Berry wrote Th e Unset-
tling of America, and 390 ppm today), with similar decreases in the natural
systems that absorb carbon. Most scientists agree that we must reduce the
level to approximately 350 ppm if we hope to sustain human life.
The science can be very depressing, unless we consider the potential
of remarkable breakthroughs and emerging trends that are occurring
throughout the world that could change our trajectory. Duane Elgin de-
scribes this potential in Promise Ahead. He believes that in our evolution,
THE SPECTRUM OF ENVIRONMENTAL DESIGN
Regenerative

Humans participating as nature:
Co-evolution of the whole
system


Restorative

Humans doing things to nature:
Assisting the self-evolution
of subsystems



Sustainable

Neutral: “100% less bad”
(McDonough)



Green

Relative Improvement
(LEED, GB Tool, Green Globe, etc.)



Conventional Practice

“One step better than breaking
the law” (Croxton)
More Energy Required
Technologies/
Techniques
Living Systems
Understanding
Whole System
Fragmented
Degenerating System
Regenerating System
Less Energy Required
A NEW TRAJECTORY

As this diagram, created by
sustainability pioneer Bill Reed,
shows, there’s still a long way to go
from current levels of green building
that offer greatly reduced negative
environmental impacts from past
practices to creating regenerative
buildings that are net-positive in terms
of performance and environmental
impact. The Living Building Challenge
takes us closer than ever to the
ultimate goal of regenerative design
that focuses on the co-evolution of the
whole system and engages humans to
participate as nature once again.
ecohomemagazine.com november • december 2012
19
THE PATH AHEAD SEEMS DAUNTING AT TIMES, BUT I AM REMINDED OF
THE BELIEF THAT A CRISIS EMBODIES TWO FORCES

DANGER
AND OPPORTUNITY

AND THAT THE MOMENT OF GREATEST DANGER
IS THE MOMENT OF GREATEST OPPORTUNITY.
mankind separated from nature and lived self-centered lives, as in ado-
lescence, in order to understand ourselves and explore our ingenuity. He
suggests that we now have the option to “grow up” as a civilization and
restore our positive relationship with nature, or not. It is a choice. We
can also choose to stay the course and destroy human life. If we choose to
make the shift and reintegrate, we have the advantage of the impressive
tools and technologies we have created to accomplish the daunting task
of revitalization in the short time available to us.

TOWARD 2020
:
BEYOND LEED
Time is short, and the outcome is uncertain, yet there are many encourag-
ing signs that our culture is beginning to shift . One notable change in an
industry that is highly resistant to change (the design and construction in-
dustry) is the impact of USGBC’s LEED rating system, which has educated
the industry and the public about creating homes and neighborhoods that
are healthy for occupants, the environment, and the industry. Homeowners
of the LEED-Platinum Make It Right homes in New Orleans’ Lower Ninth
Ward are discovering that they are healthier, more resilient, and providing
more than $200 per month in energy savings.
While some maintain that LEED is too advanced or too expensive,
others are convinced that it does not go far enough. LEED-Platinum is
only third-party verifi cation that you are doing less damage to the envi-
ronment than other design and construction projects. But for those who
follow the science of climate change and its impact on life support sys-
tems, doing less damage seems woefully inadequate.
The Living Building Challenge, on the other hand, is a system that
yields positive results for humans and nature. Th e fi rst building to be cer-
tifi ed both LEED-Platinum and a Living Building is the Omega Center
for Sustainable Living in Rhinebeck, N.Y. It generates more energy than
it consumes and purifi es more water than it pollutes; in fact, it purifi es
all the wastewater from 119 buildings on the Omega Institute’s 195-acre
campus in a biological wastewater treatment system. Furthermore, the
building has become a pedagogical tool for students and visitors and has
been claimed as the studio for yoga classes, the first sewage treatment
facility to serve in this capacity.
Two years ago, aft er leading a collaborative dialogue of discovery with
USGBC staff and a national group of thought leaders funded by USGBC,
BNIM Architects presented a concept for moving beyond LEED-Platinum.
Rather than creating another rating system, the proposal—REGEN, as it
came to be known—was an open-source, Web-based tool that introduces
participants to a diff erent way of thinking and encourages them to engage
in a global dialogue of discovery and creativity. We all felt the urgency
to facilitate a change of behavior—a cultural shift . As Bill Reed’s diagram
suggests, it is now time to discover/create the potential for the co-evolution
of the whole system—for humans to participate as nature.
BNIM’s work utilizes this whole-system collaborative approach to
create environments that become regenerative members of the com-
munity. One project in the Manheim Park neighborhood of Kansas
City, Mo., a block from my home and close to my heart, consists of
two abandoned historic schools. We are creating a regenerative living/
learning community that is intended to increase the quality of life,
health, and human capacity of residents, students, and neighbors by
redefining community, creativity, education, and urban infrastructure.
The alignment with Millennials’ lifestyles and enthusiasm of the larger
community has been encouraging.
Th e team behind the Bancroft Redevelopment Project—encompassing
many stakeholders, including residents, BNIM, local developer Dalmark
Group, and Make It Right—broke ground recently to transform the old,
three-story school and its grounds into 50 aff ordable rental apartments
supported by a wide range of on-site community services. Almost every-
thing about the Bancroft project is diff erent than the norm. Per the Make
It Right fi nancial model, the $14 million project will have no debt upon
its completion about a year from now. All five buildings, including the
school, with units ranging from 668 to 1,200 square feet, will be LEED-
Platinum and rent from $200 to $600 a month.
Raised bed gardens for urban agriculture and native landscaping ir-
rigated with captured stormwater runoff will cool both buildings and
grounds and foster community and sustainability; training for local
contractors about building green will help develop local resources and
skills, creating and maintaining jobs; and deals with a local health care
provider and local police will provide on-site services and combine with
job training, child care, recreational opportunities, and public gathering
spaces. Th e project provides a great example of the value of community
input and leadership and communal goals that hold the key to regenerat-
ing the industry.
Th e path ahead seems daunting at times, but I am reminded of the be-
lief that a crisis embodies two forces—danger and opportunity—and that
the moment of greatest danger is the moment of greatest opportunity. In
this time of incredible transformation in the ways we work, interact, and
communicate, it also feels like that moment of great opportunity for the
human family to transform the way we live.

Bob Berkebile, FAIA, is the founding principal of BNIM Architects and
Vision 2020 chair for Regenerative Design.
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Circle no. 97
Circle no. 105
ecohomemagazine.com november • december 2012
23
sustainable
communities
B
y 2020 we will be on our way to reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emis-
sions by up to 80% by addressing the demand side of energy use. As
many markets are already proving, we will place a premium on hous-
ing located within transit-oriented, walkable urban communities
and shift away from developing drivable, suburban, low-density communities
that rely on car trips for work and almost every other activity.

In the 1984 classic movie “Th e Karate Kid,” Daniel-san asked his karate
mentor, Mr. Miyagi, how he could stop the school toughs from beating him
up. Mr. Miyagi’s response was “best defense, no be there.”
In the same manner, the best way to minimize the GHG emissions that
cause climate change is to live a lifestyle that by its very nature reduces en-
ergy usage and GHG emissions. And it just so happens, that lifestyle is what
BY CHRISTOPHER LEINBERGER
Walkable Urbanism
Combats Climate Change
the market wants even though the market generally could care less about
environmental issues. Th e challenge is to encourage the real estate industry
and public policy to produce what the market is demanding.
Th e climate change debate has two sides. Th e fi rst is supply effi ciency: how
to increase the energy effi ciency of our cars, houses, and offi ce buildings
while increasing the use of renewable energy sources. Th is is a technology-
based approach. Environmentalists are hoping that science and technology
will save the day—literally.
And there is much that can, is, and will be done through supply effi ciency
to lower energy usage and reduce GHG emissions through technology—
though there is the issue of “Jevons’ paradox,” or rebound eff ects. Th is is
the theory, proposed by a 19th-century British economist, that as the effi -
ciency of energy production is improved, it leads to the increase in the use of
ecohomemagazine.com november • december 2012
24
sustainable
communities
energy, not a decrease. As electricity effi ciency increases, the price drops and
we buy a second refrigerator to store our burgeoning Costco purchases. An
energy tax would possibly preclude the Jevons’ paradox from occurring, but
few politicians are standing in line to propose this in Congress.
As David Owen, author of Th e Conundrum, says, “Beginning in 2008, the
world’s energy and carbon footprints shrank, and by signifi cant amounts.”
Why? Th e Great Recession. Reduced wealth leads to reduced consumption.
Increased wealth, partially resulting from increased energy effi ciency such as
the recent collapse in natural gas prices as a result of fracking technology, has
always led to increased GHG emissions. Cheap natural gas replaces coal to
generate electricity, which is a positive result of supply effi ciency. As a result,
the price of electricity falls and we can aff ord, for example, more energy-
consumptive electronics and the server farms needed to run the Web. We
end up using more electricity than before. Obviously the ideal answer to cli-
mate change is not a permanent reduction in economic well-being—though
that might happen if mankind does not address the climate challenge soon.
Th e necessary complementary solution to supply effi ciency technology is de-
mand mitigation. Th e best defense—“no be there.”


TOWARD 2020
:
DEMAND MITIGATION
Recent research by the Center for Clean Air Policy, the Center for Neigh-
borhood Technology, and Peter Calthorpe’s most recent book, Urbanism in
the Age of Climate Change, point out the benefi ts of the demand mitigation
approach. Th e built environment (real estate and infrastructure) and the
transportation systems we use to get between our buildings consume about
two-thirds of all energy in the United States and produce about the same
percentage of GHG emissions. Mathematically, the built environment is the
largest U.S. source of GHG emissions.
Households living a conventional low-density, drivable, suburban lifestyle
have large houses fully exposed to weather and drive for nearly all house-
hold trips. In contrast, a walkable urban lifestyle generally includes a smaller
house or attached unit, shared common walls, and walking, biking, and
transit for most trips. Th e diff erence in energy consumption and GHG emis-
sions is signifi cant. A household moving from a drivable suburban house
to a walkable urban place can drop its energy usage and GHG emissions by
between 50% and 80%.
Achieving this reduction from the largest category of GHG emissions
makes the demand mitigation approach the most eff ective solution for cli-
mate change.
Fortunately, there is a structural shift under way in real estate. For the
fi rst time in three generations, consumers are demanding walkable urban
lifestyles, and businesses are beginning to locate in walkable urban places,
known as WalkUPs.
In my recent report, “DC: Th e WalkUP Wake Up Call” (http://business.
gwu.edu/WalkUPWakeUpCall.pdf), I examined how development has
shift ed in the Washington, D.C., metro area over the past three real estate
cycles dating back to 1992. I looked at how much of the new real estate devel-
opment was occurring in an increasing number of WalkUPs, located in sub-
urbs and within the city, rather than in more sprawling areas of the region.
From 1992 to 2000, only 24% of income property (offi ces, retail, hotel, and
rental apartments) was developed in WalkUPs. By the next real estate cycle
(2001-2008), WalkUPs were capturing 34% of new development. During the
current cycle (2009-present), 48% of new income real estate development
is occurring in WalkUPs. Occupying less than 1% of the land area of the
region, nearly half of new development is occurring in WalkUPs. And this
ignores the WalkUPs that are bedroom communities where most people live.
It is possible when local-serving WalkUPs are included, the new walkable
urban development since 2009 would be 60% to 70% of all new development
in the metro area. What was a niche market 20 years ago is now the market.


MARKETS RESPOND
Th ere is such pent-up demand for walkable urban development that stag-
gering price premiums have occurred. Places as far f lung as Seattle;
Denver; Atlanta; Columbus, Ohio; as well as metro D.C. neighborhoods ad-
jacent to downtown considered slums 20 to 30 years ago had for-sale prices
per square foot far below ritzy, drivable, suburban neighborhoods served by
luxury shopping, private golf clubs, and high-achieving public and private
schools. Today, these neighborhoods, like Short North in Columbus and
Highlands in Denver, are far more expensive than their suburban competi-
tion. In metro D.C., walkable, urban, for-sale housing sells for a 71% price
premium on a price per square foot basis. Th e lines have crossed as walk-
able urban neighborhoods have gentrifi ed. Th e same crossing of lines has
occurred with offi ce, hotel, and apartment rents in many metros.
Th e market is telling the real estate industry to build more walkable urban
product, the most environmentally benign form of the built environment.
Arlington, Va., across the Potomac River from the District of Columbia,
has been a model of compact urban development over the past 30 years.
From 1980 to 2009, nearly 23 million square feet of commercial space and
more than 28,000 new housing units were built around seven of Arlington’s
Metrorail stations, though occupying only 10% of the county’s land mass.
According to “Growing Wealthier,” households in these WalkUPs drive an
Walk Score

Walk Score


Gross FAR*
*Floor Area Ratio, a
measure of density
95
90
85
80
75
70
65
3.0
2.5
2.0
1.5
1.0
0.5
0
Copper Silver Gold Platinum
FAR
ecohomemagazine.com november • december 2012
25
A HOUSEHOLD MOVING FROM A DRIVABLE SUBURBAN
HOUSE TO A WALKABLE URBAN PLACE CAN DROP ITS ENERGY USE
AND GHG EMISSIONS BY BETWEEN 50% AND 80%.
average of 11 to 17 miles per day. In contrast, nearby suburban counties’
households averaged 35 to 65 miles per day. In addition, the new residen-
tial development in Arlington is comprised of townhouses and multifamily
buildings, resulting in signifi cantly less energy consumed per household for
heating and cooling.
Calthorpe estimates in Urbanism in the Age of Climate Change that house-
holds living in energy-effi cient homes in urban areas produce 74% less GHG
than those living in an average single-family home in a suburban area. How-
ever, this number only includes the impact of residential location.
Th ough poorly studied at present, as businesses increasingly choose of-
fi ces and retail spaces in WalkUPs, there may be an even greater impact,
with employees taking transit at a greater rate or being able to walk or bike
to work. Google has substantial offi ce locations in downtown San Francisco,
Chicago, and New York. Even Detroit, the poster child of industrial decline,
has seen a rush of new employment moving to downtown, such as Rock Fi-
nancial, parent of Quicken Loans.
Arlington County experienced the substantial growth described above
but also had an absolute reduction in vehicle miles traveled on its major ar-
terials over the same time period. Th e products of the emerging knowledge
economy, such as the soft ware used to write this article, arrived on this com-
puter via the Internet, not a truck.
Th ere is such a high price premium in these WalkUPs that they are out
of the fi nancial reach of many of those who would like to locate there. It is
incumbent upon policymakers to ensure the removal of barriers that push
up land prices for developers trying to meet this demand. In addition, pub-
lic programs need to encourage and subsidize aff ordable housing in these
locations.
Th e production of new walkable places, the intensifi cation of those that
already exist, and the expansion of transit and nonmotorized transportation
infrastructure will expand the walkable urban options available to consum-
ers. Th e United States will literally build its way out of the environmental
conundrum Owen says we are in.
Giving the market what it is demanding—more aff ordable and walkable
urban development—is one of the best ways, if not the best, of reducing GHG
emissions. Following Mr. Miyagi’s advice, combined with supply effi ciency
and a carbon tax, is the most eff ective path toward addressing climate change.

Christopher B. Leinberger is president of LOCUS, a walkable urban devel-
oper organization affi liated with Smart Growth America, and Vision 2020
chair for Sustainable Communities. He is a professor at George Washington
University School of Business, a director of the Center for Real Estate and Ur-
ban Analysis, a nonresident senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, and a
partner in Arcadia Land Co. (Mason Austin, research associate at the GW
Center for Real Estate and Urban Analysis, assisted with this article.)
ECONOMIC RANKINGS

These charts summarize the
relative rents, Walk Scores, and
FAR performance of the 42
walkable urban places (WalkUPs)
in the Washington, D.C., area
studied in the author’s recent
report “DC: The WalkUP Wake
Up Call.” The research reveals
a signifi cant market premium
emerging for offi ce and residential
developments located in
higher-density, transit-oriented
communities.

Copper


Silver


Gold


Platinum
$50
$40
$30
$20
$10
0
Offi ce Retail Overall Residential
(Rental)
Residential
(Ownership)
Rents by Product Type
Rent (or Rent Equivalent) per Square Foot
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Circle no. 119
ecohomemagazine.com november • december 2012
27
materials
&
resources
B
y 2020 transparency will have permeated the world of
building products, giving us nutrition-label-like data on ev-
erything we use. Th ose labels will inform us about what’s
in the products, what resources went into their production,
and what was released or emitted in the process of making them.

Recognizing that data alone is not actionable information, we’ll
also need trustworthy, reliable resources to help us interpret the
information about ingredients and emissions. Th e nutrition labels
we see on food wouldn’t do us much good without access to good
science about healthy and unhealthy fats—and we need that kind of
science to inform healthy material choices as well.
Today we know that many of the products we’re using are un-
necessarily harmful—to our health, to the species with which we
share this planet, and to the climate—but we have only glimpses
and conjectures about the exact nature of those impacts.
Th is predicament certainly applies to designers and contrac-
tors—they know only what suppliers tell them about what’s in a
product. But it also applies to manufacturers, who may be in a simi-
lar position with their suppliers. Even when manufacturers know
exactly what they’re using, information about the health and envi-
ronmental risks of those substances isn’t always clear, nor can they
predict which substances their customers will be most concerned
about next.

KEYS TO TRANSPARENCY BY 2020
Th e push for transparency is not just about health—it applies to en-
vironmental impacts of materials as well. And it’s not just about
products. A growing number of cities are mandating that building
owners release data on how much energy their buildings use. New
York City is leading this trend with its groundbreaking release of
energy use in large nonresidential buildings throughout the city.
In the realm of building materials, an important tool for get-
ting a handle on all of this is an environmental life-cycle assess-
ment (LCA), which adds up the inputs and outputs of resources and
emissions through all stages of a product’s life.
Th ose inputs and outputs are then traced to categories of envi-
ronmental impact—sometimes called “the big six”—which include
BY NADAV MALIN
Transparent
Future
ecohomemagazine.com november • december 2012
28
materials
&
resources
global warming potential (greenhouse gases), depletion of the stratospheric
ozone layer, acidifi cation of land and water resources, eutrophication (nutri-
ent loading of surface waters), formation of tropospheric ozone, and deple-
tion of nonrenewable energy resources.
An LCA report on a single product can run more than 100 pages—too
much for most designers and builders to digest. Fortunately, the Europeans
created a summary format, called an Environmental Product Declaration
(EPD), that a few leading suppliers are starting to use in the United States.
In addition to being short enough to manage, EPDs have the benefit of
third-party validation, which adds to their credibility.
But there are critical issues that LCA studies either ignore completely or
give lip service to with woefully inadequate proxy indicators. For example,
the widely used TRACI method for translating inputs and outputs into
impact categories deals with habitat disruption using the proxy of numbers
of threatened or endangered species in the country , and it lacks risk factors
for many widely used chemicals.
As whole-building LCA becomes feasible for more projects, it is critical
to avoid overstating what it can do.

HEALTH PRODUCT DECLARATIONS
To fi ll in the human health gap, a new initiative led by architects and build-
ing owners is introducing a corollary to the EPD called the Health Product
Declaration (HPD). Th is reporting format defi nes and standardizes how en-
gaged designers and owners would like to receive information about what’s
in the products they’re using. (Editor’s note: Th e author is on the board of the
Health Product Declaration Collaborative.)
Th e HPD specifi es how ingredients should be listed and defi nes a series of
reference lists that determine if there are any health hazards associated with
any of those ingredients.
If there are, those hazards also have to be reported on the form —not un-
like Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDSs), which have been common for de-
cades. While MSDSs focus on acute health risks, HPDs extend that focus to
include risks from long-term, chronic exposures.
The HPD aims for 100% disclosure—users want to know about all the
ingredients in a product, not just a few benign ones. But it also includes an
option for companies to keep some ingredients secret as long as they report
any health hazards associated with those undisclosed ingredients.
RED LIST OF
INGREDIENTS
TO AVOID

As this illustration
demonstrates,
the overlapping
lists of potentially
harmful product
ingredients are
diverse and growing,
complicating the
call for increased
transparency and
the mission to
simplify product
selection criteria.
PHAROS
PROJECT
PRODUCT INGREDIENTS TO WATCH
More
carcinogens
More mutagens,
reproductive,
developmental,
and neurotoxicants
More PBTs,
asthmagens,
and endocrine
disruptors
GGHC
Perkins +
Will
P
e
rkins +
W
ill
GGH
C

LEED Pilot
LEED
NC
LEED HC


Anti-
microbials
PAHs
Halons
Copper
PFOA
PU
Tins
PFCs
Long
PFC
BPA
chlorinated
paraffi ns
NPEs, MDI,
TDI
PS
Asthmagens
Phthalates
PBDE
CFC
HCFC
VOCs and urea
formaldehyde
Arsenic,
penta, and
creosote
PVC and other
chlorinated
plastics
Added
formal-
dehyde
HBCD
HFR
Living
Building
Challenge
Antimony
LBC Watch


PAHs,
phenol, PU,
more metals,
and other
REACH
chemicals
Lead
Mercury
Cadmium
Hexavalent
Chromium
EPA
ecohomemagazine.com november • december 2012
29
TODAY WE KNOW THAT MANY OF THE PRODUCTS WE’RE USING ARE
UNNECESSARILY HARMFUL

TO OUR HEALTH, TO THE SPECIES WITH WHICH WE
SHARE THIS PLANET, AND TO THE CLIMATE

BUT WE HAVE ONLY
GLIMPSES AND CONJECTURES ABOUT THE EXACT NATURE OF THOSE IMPACTS.
Transparency is not just about access to data. We already have more data
than we can possibly process. According to IDC, by 2010 we had generated
more than a zetabyte of data—that’s 15 zeros aft er the 1—and that number is
expected to grow nearly fi ft yfold by 2020.
The challenge is getting data that we can trust in a form that we can
understand and use. And that moves the conversation directly into ques-
tions of values, politics, and power.
Who do you trust? How should you interpret the data you’re getting? And
more important, what should you do about it?
Look at the example of coal f ly ash. The EPA and others (including
BuildingGreen) have encouraged the use of fl y ash as cement substitute in
concrete to reduce greenhouse gases.
We knew that there were trace heavy metals in it but believed that ty-
ing those up on concrete was a good solution. Now health advocates are
questioning that position, and the EPA is backing off on encouraging this
“benefi cial reuse” but has yet to rule on whether fl y ash has to be treated as
hazardous waste.
Similarly, there is a lot of interest in bio-based alternatives to petro-
chemicals. But a closer look at the life cycle of some of those new ingredients,
considering the impacts of farming with fertilizers, pesticides, and heavy
equipment, shows that they may not be any better.

LEED DRIVING CHANGE
Over the past decade the LEED rating system has proven to be a signifi -
cant driver of change in the building industry. Before LEED, for example,
building commissioning was almost unheard of except in labs and mission-
critical facilities. And most companies couldn’t tell you how much recycled
content was in their products.
Th e next-generation LEED rating systems for commercial buildings seek
to push the building industry to a whole new level of materials evaluation.
Th ey strongly encourage the use of LCA tools for whole-building assess-
ments and EPDs for product selection.
Currently in draft form, these standards also acknowledge the limitations
of LCA. Rather than resorting to LCA to deal with habitat and human health
issues, LEED is introducing new credits and requirements that address those
areas more directly.
Th ese new areas include:
• A new credit achievement option addressing raw-materials extraction
that promotes responsible mining and agriculture practices, in addition to
the Forest Stewardship Council certifi cation of responsible forestry that has
long been part of LEED.
• A new credit encouraging the use of products that have had their ingre-
dients—and any known health hazards from those ingredients—disclosed
by manufacturers using a protocol such as the HPD.
• A new credit discouraging the use of products with chemicals that have
been deemed especially problematic.
LEED for Homes is not moving in this direction yet, but it may well do
that in the future once these approaches become more familiar to the
industry.
Some industry groups are concerned about these new initiatives in LEED
and are doing their best to undermine support for the program. Instead, they
could be doing more to support it, while making it work better for them and
their members.

MANUFACTURERS’ DILEMMA
It’s not easy being a product manufacturer in this time of rapid change. How
far should a company have to go to release proprietary product formulations
to meet the growing requests for transparency? How much can we push for
information protected as intellectual property?
Th ese questions are coming under fi re from two directions. First, there’s
the potential for losing business to customers who demand transparency,
Google being the leader in this area.
Second, it is feasible today for companies to take almost any product into
their labs and analyze its makeup through reverse engineering to get their
own answers. So it could be that the actual customers would be the only ones
left in the dark.
Th is is also tricky territory for architects and builders who are being asked
to understand chemistry and toxicology in addition to everything else about
their professions.
Some fi rms are pushing hard for transparency and disclosure, while oth-
ers are actively discouraging their designers from asking for this kind of in-
formation, afraid that having the data exposes them to additional liability if
any problems arise.

BEYOND THE RED LIST
In a world of proprietary formulations, health and environmental advocates
developed fi ltering tools like the Red List that identify ingredients to avoid,
but the tangled mess of lists isn’t working well for anyone. If suppliers choose
instead to use a format like the HPD and reveal what’s in their products,
the whole dynamic will change for the better, and everyone—manufactur-
ers and their customers—will be working together as trusted stakeholders to
create the safest products possible.
We need that kind of trust if we are to succeed in solving the health and
environmental problems we all care about. Transparency is most powerful
when it leads to that trust.

Nadav Malin is president of BuildingGreen and Vision 2020 chair for
Materials and Resources.
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