State / Guides

Urban farming

Urban Farming turns beautiful gardens into a grocery store!

...state of our water systems is far more serious than most people realize . Aquifers don't replenish themselves at nearly the rate we consume water. Adding to that problem is the fact much of human development involves altering the earth so that water cannot penetrate it. Not only can onsite water management reduce you...

A Tiny House for sale locally set me thinking, should I buy a Tiny Home?
Tiny house


...State, and the only thing I’ve concluded is that NOBODY can put an accurate dollar value on a Tiny Home – another thing to add to my potential “Buying a Tiny House” anxiety levels and a check in the “No” column. Is Towing a Tiny House on Wheels (THOW) easy? If you do choose to live in a Tiny House with wheels, (cal...

Affordable green prefab homes - contemporary rancher style - Abri 1850 BV
Architecture and plan design

Prefab Homes for Sale - Beautiful & Sustainable - Available Now

...stated yet refined; these are beautiful homes that will blend into either urban or rural surroundings. The concept behind the design is family, harmony and good living - all rolled into one. The warm and inviting interior wraps around on one side creating a private and intimate space that can be carefully oriented on a...

Choosing the right firewood
Wood stove and biomass heat

Burning the right firewood for maximum heat output and minimum environmental impact

...State, most people who heat with wood only use softwood simply because that is all that is available. We happily encourage comments from both softwood and hardwood users below, so we can settle this once and for all. There are many conflicting opinions on burning softwood, some say it causes more creosote, but there ...

Roxul mineral wool batt insulation in LEED Homes
Insulation and soundproofing

Choosing the right insulation: the pros, cons and applications for walls, slabs & basements

...State University have developed a rigid cellulose foam insulation panel that one day we hope will replace plastics based foam as a standard building insulation. And better still is when the natural alternative for these plastic based rigid foam insulation boards is a naturally derived cellulose high-performance panel w...

Crawlspace radon barrier installation for radon mitigation
Radon in Homes - Mitigation

Removing radon gas from basements and crawlspaces

...states require WL results to be converted to pCi/L to minimize confusion. While not commonly used in the United States, any radon level at or above 0.148 bq should be reduced - pointing out that the EPA recommendations are lower than those in Canada. Also interesting or potentially worrying to note is that the World He...

Vapor retarder latex primer instead of polyethylene sheet
Air and vapour barriers

Replacing polyethylene vapour barriers with latex paint vapor control

...state & provincial building codes, but completely ignores the reality of how different those climates are. Many parts of the country can range from extreme cold to extreme heat and humidity, with temperatures that vary as much as 60 degrees Celsius or more. In areas like that, the vapour barrier that works great in F...

High efficiency wood stoves
Wood stove and biomass heat

Heating with wood and biomass fuel

...state of global energy reserves being somewhat questionable for the coming generation, and as people rediscover the charm of a real fire in the hearth, many people are looking for ways to be less reliant on conventional energy supplies in the future and to look for an off-grid heating solution . Burning firewood and ot...

Passively-heated off-grid LEED Gold home
Off-grid and Net-Zero Housing

Off-grid living blog part 6 - energy modeling projections and real performance

...state of things is that the downstairs bedrooms are always cooler through the summer, making sleeping comfortable even on the hottest days of the summer without any air conditioning - but this would have been the same if we'de used more insulation. Off grid homes energy modelling & HERS rating part 2 ...

Is EPS foam eco-friendly? Exterior home insulation rigid foam panels
Insulation and soundproofing

Does plastic foam or Styrofoam insulation have a place in green building?

...statement in case you think I don’t know; maybe your in-laws live around the corner. I just like to get a little saucy when I crop-dust my fellow green builders with a contentious topic. If we were able to find greener foam blowing agents ( spray foam is already transitioning to lower GHG blowing agents; read more he...

Home made DIY laundry detergent from buckeyes / horse chestnuts
Lifestyle and environment

How to make Eco-friendly DIY laundry soap from Buckeyes / Horse Chestnuts

...state definitively , but try about a third of a cup of liquid with an average-sized load of laundry (or 2 cap fulls). From there you can see how well it cleans, and whether it over-suds or not, and begin to fine tune your production process as well as how much liquid soap is required to clean your clothes. Given that...