An article out this week from Canada provides an excellent example of how to design a zero-carbon footprint building. It aligns well with the “carbon-sink” concept first mentioned here on the Greenest Insulation Blog in 2010 and with the new AIA Blueprint For Better initiative announced recently.
Camp Kawartha health centre building, near Pererborough, Ontario, is a 1,200 square foot structure being built exclusively with natural materials designed to achieve net-zero utility costs and emit zero toxins. The article on the KawarthaNow website reports that:
According to McGahern, the Builders for Climate Action carbon calculator shows the finished building’s material carbon emissions will be 6.9 tonnes but the wood, straw, and cellulose insulation will store 12.5 tonnes (absorbed during photosynthesis when they were in plant form), resulting in net reduction of 5.6 tonnes.
Compare that with a building built conventionally — with a concrete foundation, spray foam insulation, and brick on the exterior — whose material emissions would be about 39 tonnes
CIMA applauds this effort by all involved with the project and is pleased to recognize it as yet another example of how cellulose insulation plays an integral part in reducing the carbon footprint of homes and buildings during construction – and saving energy every month for the life of the structure.
Have a great example of a carbon neutral building or home, share it in a comment here.