From Tragedy to Triumph - Rebuilding Green Homes after Disaster
Rebuilding your home after a natural disaster such as a flood, hurricane, or tornado can be daunting. You can turn a tragedy into an opportunity to create a healthier, more comfortable and more energy-efficient home by rebuilding your next home green. Homes devastated by a tornado in Kansas in 2007 were rebuilt to use 40 to 50 percent less energy than current building code, for example. Some components of a green home checklist include:
- South orientation - Build your home facing south to optimize its solar gain in winter and reduce heating loads.
- Efficient insulation - One of the easiest, most cost-effective ways to save energy
- Programmable thermostat - Saves energy by automatically powering down when you're away
- Nontoxic products - Use products that don't contain toxic chemicals, such as paints and adhesives with low volatile organic compounds (VOCs)
- Recycled construction waste - Try to recycle at least 50 percent of the wood, cardboard and concrete from new home projects