Zero Net Carbon Buildings

Zero Net Carbon Buildings


– [Narrator] For decades now, there’s been an environmental movement, raising important questions and inspiring more sustainable solutions. Just compare yesterday’s gas guzzlers to today’s electric vehicles, or how recycling has almost
become second nature. Over the next 10, 20, 30 years Zero Net Carbon building standards will be a key component in addressing the impacts of climate
change we are now facing. You might be wondering, what exactly is a Zero Net Carbon, or ZNC building? In a nutshell, ZNC buildings
have three chracteristics. They’re energy efficient,
they’re fully electric, and they use carbon free energy sources, such as solar or wind to meet
operational energy needs. This concept applies
to all building types, homes, businesses, schools,
fire stations, you name it. A ZNC building starts
with energy efficiency. One of the simplest ways
to improve efficiency in existing building
would be to install LEDs or use natural light and buy energy star labeled
equipment and appliances. Did you know, natural
lighting has been proven to improve learning in classrooms
and employee productivity? ZNC buildings feature
ideal interior climates and less noise pollution, due to
energy efficient insulation. New technologies like smart thermostats work with these improvements
to only use energy when and where it’s needed. ZNC buildings must also be fully electric, because natural gas,
which is mostly methane, produces greenhouse gases and
decreases indoor air quality. Efficient electric options,
such as induction cooktops and heat pumps for heating spaces, cooling spaces and heating water are already widely available. The third key part of a ZNC building is ensuring the energy
used is carbon free. Harnessing the power of the sun will go a long way to make that happen. The cost to install solar
have declined dramatically, simplifying the decision to
choose solar energy production. Even better is when
on-site solar generation is paired with battery storage and electric vehicle charging stations, to add both convenience and reliability. For buildings that are
not well-suited for solar or can’t generate enough
energy to meet their needs, ZNC is still achievable, by purchasing 100% carbon free or renewable electricity from your power provider. The strongest ZNC benefit
is the improvement in quality of life for you,
your family and the community, with utility cost savings, cleaner air and more comfortable living spaces. Moving toward a fossil fuel-free future is a bold but necessary goal and the implementation of
ZNC building components is a huge step in the right direction. To learn more about ZNC,
and steps you can take now toward this future, check
out these resources. (cheerful music)

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