What is a Zero Carbon House?

I’m sure we aren’t the first people to tell you that the amount our country spend on energy is one of the highest in Europe, complimented with fuel poverty also on the increase. We can all help contribute by making home improvements to our existing homes affecting our carbon footprint, imagine knowing your property you live in produces NO carbon dioxide emissions, even better still a negative carbon house wouldn’t only result in no energy bills but potentially even make you money!


An instant assumption when you think of a zero carbon homes are these futuristic spaceships, or the contrasting opposite of a home powered by a home made generator with your pigs and cows in the back garden.


“A zero Carbon Home produces its own source of energy; it is a generator of its own”


The appearance of a zero-carbon home can be designed to look like a traditional house or your futuristic spaceship. The element that makes the property zero carbon is this simple characteristic – the home can generate its own energy through renewable sources, sufficient to sustainable energy demands. In some cases, this can even produce enough to deliver a surplus power, in this instance extra payments can be received.


To achieve a zero-carbon house there are some key elements which need to be considered. The building is designed to utilise the materials and energy in relation to its locality. The end goal is to create a sustainable working, semi-independent home with thermal comfort in relation to the surrounding location/climates. Some key features to consider are as follows.


Air tightness

Increased air tightness will help minimise the amount of warm air escaping the building, which can be regulated by natural or mechanical ventilation systems ensuring good air quality.

Renewable Energy

The home itself can generate its own renewable energy from an extensive number of methods; solar panels, wind turbines, wood fuelled heating, hydroelectricity and solar water heating.

Local Sourcing

Efficient sourcing of local, recycled, natural materials. Working locally will prevent added pollution to be generated through the traveling and shipping of materials overseas.


Insulation

Sufficient insulation of the walls, roof and floors will help to ensure a better thermal comfort all year round minimising the energy requirements.


Orientation

The orientation has direct correlation with natural light, heat and passive solar gain all source from the sun.

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