The consequences of climate change are becoming more obvious with catastrophic events such as the California megafires and the 9 hurricanes we have experienced in just this hurricane season alone both being linked to the gradual change to the Earth. Due to this, the public support for green initiatives has gone up as well. That is where things like net-zero energy buildings and schools come in.
What Are Net-Zero Buildings And What Are The Steps Towards It?
Net-zero is a relatively new term that refers to buildings that generate 100% of their energy through renewable sources, thus using net-zero energy. This is achieved by using various methods of renewable energy generation, but the most common source is roof-mounted solar panels. This effort is bolstered by utilizing energy conserving technologies around the buildings and equipment so that the energy consumption can be accommodated for. The cost of a net-zero building is not very much more if at all more expensive than a standard building due to the 80% decrease in the cost of renewable energy in the last 10 years. The construction is not as expensive as it used to be, and the efficiency of the solar panels makes the electricity costs saved lead to lower costs in the long run.
Net-Zero Schools And Other Projects
Two small towns in Connecticut, Mansfield and Manchester, are creating net-zero elementary schools. The combination of the lowered cost of renewable energy sources and the particularly high utility costs in the North East of the United States makes this a very viable option. Both schools, and a majority of the net-zero projects around the nation, are being led by CMTA Inc. Through that company and other green initiatives, the number of net-zero buildings constructed each year is growing quickly. 2020 saw 700 net-zero buildings built compared to just 332 built in 2016. Over one-third of the net-zero projects currently in construction are public schools.
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We hope this information on net-zero buildings for the future of sustainability was useful or interesting for you!
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