So you’ve already checked off all the items on the easy energy efficiency to-do lists, what next? Maybe it’s time to build a super insulated house, or look into cutting edge efficiency techniques. These groups can help:
The Alaska Center for Appropriate Technology (ACAT) leads workshops in working toward net-zero buildings – those that produce as much power from renewable resources as they use. They also run annual solar tours and other events.
The Cold Climate Housing Research Center does original research and publishes fact sheets and reports on cutting edge building technologies for heating and saving energy in our region. They also produce great videos, develop sustainable structures for rural Alaskan communities, have tours, and have a great website portal ‘Your Northern Home’ to help find the information you need graphically and easily. There is some very exciting research into the extremely insulated Arctic Wall Construction Technique.
The Living Building Challenge, a project of the Cascadia Green Building Council and the Living Future Institute, promotes extremely rigorous standards for a ‘Living Building’, a building that produces as much energy and water as it uses, enhances the community it resides in, and avoids the most toxic building materials.
Alaska Housing Finance Corporation (AHFC) – recently added a sixth star to their energy ratings, and offers monetary incentives to building to this energy rating.