Underneath it all, the Proud Green Home at Serenbe is green indeed.
Out of sight behind the sustainable cladding is the green-colored outer surface of Huber's ZIP System R Sheathing.
It's one of the green products specified by architect Chris Laumer-Giddens and his firm LG Squared, designers of the Proud Green Home at Serenbe, outside of Atlanta.
Laumer's design is expected to result in an energy rating that is 55 percent better than a similar-sized home built to Georgia’s minimum energy code requirements. With the addition of rooftop photovoltaic solar panels, the Proud Green Home will achieve net-zero, or near net-zero, efficiency—meaning that over the course of a year, it will produce roughly as much energy as it consumes.
Luis Imery, owner of the Imery Group, builders of the Proud Green Home at Serenbe, said to achieve the goal of a net-zero home all the systems must work together.
"We're taking a holistic design approach so it's not just about one thing, it's about how all the systems interact with each other to deliver the highest performance possible," Imery said.
Huber's ZIP System R Sheathing is an oriented-strand board (OSB) coated with an air barrier and 1 inch of insulation to reduce thermal bridging. The home also uses engineered lumber products for the roof and floor for design advantages and reduced environmental impact.
The ZIP System R Sheathing offers five layers to help builders meet strict energy codes.
Continuous foam insulation, designed to meet new energy codes, provides higher R-value and increases thermal performance while eliminating thermal bridging.
Engineered wood provides structure and durability. ZIP System R Sheathing is made with the same resins and technology as AdvanTech flooring, the No. 1 brand of subflooring.
A built-in water resistive barrier eliminates the need for housewrap and felt, eliminating costly rework. Optimal permeance allows the panel to breathe and dry out.
Continuous rigid air barrier creates greater energy efficiency and homeowner comfort by dramatically decreasing air leakage into and out of a building, which helps to eliminate drafts.
ZIP System tape permanently seals all panel seams. The tape adhesive is acrylic technology that provides superior, permanent adhesion.
With such attention to detail, the Proud Green Home also is projected to meet the highest levels for EarthCraft House, ENERGY STAR, Indoor Air Plus, and WaterSense green building certifications. Other notable features will include continuous slab-edge insulation, a ventilation energy recovery system, solar thermal hot water, a mini-split HVAC system, and a 29-foot foyer to promote passive air circulation.
In partnership with Southface Energy Institute, ProudGreenHome.com will monitor the performance of the home after it is completed and occupied in order to provide real-life feedback.
Read more about the Proud Green Home at Serenbe.
Gary Wollenhaupt is an experienced writer and editor, with a background as a daily newspaper reporter as well as corporate and agency public relations and marketing. He is constantly looking for affordable green upgrades to make to his home in eastern Kentucky.