Zero net energy (ZNE) or near-ZNE dwellings—structures that consume roughly the same amount of energy as they produce over the course of a year—will be squarely in the center of the Digitized House universe, and we view ZNE or near-ZNE as a legitimate, attainable, and highly desirable destination for the homeowners of today as well as tomorrow. There are many paths to ZNE, but the majority are grounded in fundamentally and irreversibly changing how most residences are architected, designed, built, occupied, and managed to help reduce the building’s overall net energy usage and resource consumption footprint. And our mantra here will be to help guide you along the various routes.
The big elephant in the room may well be the California Residential ZNE Action Plan, where the goal is to achieve ZNE for all new residential construction in the state of California by 2020. But ZNE—also known as net-zero energy (NZE)—is not some white paper pipe dream: It is already a reality not only in California but also many other areas of the U.S., with many case studies and testimonials already on the ground.
So, as we rev up the Digitized House content machine, look for us to dig deeply into ZNE from every angle, with the unique perspective of making real-world sense out of it for you.
Tom Kolnowski is the Chief Content Officer & Founder of Digitized House Media, LLC, the publisher of Digitized House | Guide to the Connected Home. When he isn’t writing about smart home technology, sustainability, and high-performance architecture, you’ll find him exploring faraway destinations with his family.