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Green is a Good Thing!

The Oklahoma Green Building Summit 2011 was jam packed with helpful information to assist builders in getting in line with the coming mandate for more energy efficient housing. There was also a lot said about new technologies and products. Green building, done right, makes a lot of sense. It can help us save money on construction and build homes that use less energy, reducing the costs of heating, cooling and powering our towns and cities. For a “big picture” overview of what is available, check out these sites for sources on some great green building ideas and technologies.

This first site has it all when it comes to documentation and education. Expect to see articles from Building Science referenced regularly here on Hail and Wind. From pdfs explaining everything from weatherization to brick, and vapor barriers, their catalog is very thorough. Go here for reference materials you can use to educate yourself before you hire a contractor, or make a potentially costly choice on home improvement projects.

This site from the State Energy Office, of the Oklahoma Department of Commerce, is full of training videos on a wide variety of “green building” topics. Start your visit with the “virtual house” link and choose the area you would like to know more about for a catalog of videos on the subject. Another great place to come when you need to know what they’re (contractors) talking about.

The home of the National Green Building Program features a huge selection of useful resources for home owners and contractors alike. Start with the green scoring tool to see how your renovation or construction project adds up in the green department. Then visit the sites sections, divided by level of detail, from an overview of green building to the ICC National Green Building Standard.

While there is no mechanism in place for accurate enforcement here in Oklahoma, the new standard for all builders is the ICC. Whether you are a contractor who needs to learn more about the new standards, or a home owner, interested in holding your contractors accountable, even if your municipality may not, this is the site for you. It is very technical, but the forum features a huge backlog of Q&A that can help you maneuver through the details. You will need to register for a free account to access all of the features of this site.

The Energy and Environmental Building Alliance website features links to a wide variety of contractor and product websites. These are companies that have and are developing energy efficient and environmentally friendly building materials and practices. One of the best features is a link database under resources that will provide you with resources specific to your geographic region.

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