What is “Off the Grid”?

This has become a buzz in green building. To create a building that is carbon neutral or operates off the grid.  Is it really possible though?  We think it is.  But it takes a big commitment and requires the clients full support.  The idea is basically that you account for all the energy that goes into making or readying all the materials that will compose your building – this is the “embodied energy” of a material and then you design the structure to use as little energy as possible in the day to day operations and you offset the energy it does use by creating energy on site or purchasing offset credits. It is the art of creating a balance with the environment. Is it for everyone, probably not – but it is possible. As the building market continues to evolve towards more sustainable products and designers get more in tune with designed energy efficiency you will begin to see it more and more.  It actually makes more sense to do it as a community enterprise where resources can be shared.


About clarkrichardson

Clark Richardson Architects practice design with the goal of creating contemporary architectural experiences through form, sustainability and detail. We specialize in green building, sustainable residential and commercial design and have architectural studios in Santa Fe and Austin and a design studio New Orleans.
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