I know – you see my lips move, but all you hear is blog, blog, blog. Blogs have become an important way to get information these days. Anyone can start one on almost any topic that interests them. Passive House has become the topic of many a blog and it is that focus that I want to blog about today.
I started blogging when the Seattle Passive House began construction. I wanted a way to let people know about that project, both homeowners & contractors, and I wanted an opportunity as a freshly minted Certified Passive House Consultant to begin finding my place in the Passive House community. I’m not an Architect, Designer, or Contractor – but I am fascinated with construction and have a Construction Management degree. Hearing about the Passive House standard was a light bulb moment for me. It made sense immediately... and I decided to blog about it. My Existing Resources blog has gotten quite a nice following and opened up some opportunities along the way. One of them was to take a trip down the West Coast and tour Passive House projects. In the course of that I discovered more Passive House bloggers blogging.
One of the PH bloggers I met was Zeta Kelly of the Artisans group and she writes their blog. Their designer, Tessa Smith is a Certifed Passive House Consultant and her boss Randy Foster is a CPHC in training. They are getting ready to break ground on their third Passive House project with many more on the drawing board. Their blog is written from a Design/Build perspective and includes interviews with their homeowners. The articles are informative and have nice photo details when needed.
On my trip I met several homeowners who were blogging about their Passive House projects. These are great perspectives because they can reach other homeowners who are considering building Passive Houses and are not quite sure what to expect. It’s one thing to write so that you are explaining a concept, it’s a totally different thing to be living the dream while it is unfolding. It is that excitement and stress that these bloggers bring to blogging that only they can – and they are doing a great job of sharing the information AND the excitement that they feel about their projects. Here are blogs written by homeowners of two of the projects I visited this summer: The Rue-Evans home in Salem, Or and closer to Portland, the Kuglerhaus in West Linn, OR.
As I was researching products for the PassiveHouseCentral.US website community I have started I came across a supplier who has their own blog. Serious Windows are manufactured in the USA and can be used to meet Passive House requirements if those choices are modeled in the PHPP. I had not considered the possibility that a supplier would have a blog. In this day and age of everyone and their grandmother having a Facebook page it makes sense. Check out the Serious Materials blog, but also keep your eyes open for blogs by other suppliers.
I have also heard of a company that wants to produce kit homes that will meet the Passive House standard and they have a blog. NewenHouse kit homes, a branch of the Madison Environmental Group in Wisconsin started out to make a sustainable LEED kit home and after visiting the National Passive House Conference in Portland decided to tweak their design to meet Passive House standards. This is very exciting – they are planning kit homes that homeowners can participate in as the general contractor if they desire. Their homes are also consciously planned to limit the carbon footprint and make use of sustainable materials and methods. You can follow the progress of their first kit home on their blog.
There are also professional bloggers blogging about Passive House – especially those in the green press community. Martin Holladay blogs for the Green Building Advisor and has written several blog postings about Passive House construction. Having a blog talking about Passive House in a respected green building news source like the Green Building Advisor gets the word out to a larger group of readers who are already looking for sustainable information. Blogs like Martin's are a wonderful way to get the word out about Passive House.
Blogs aren’t the only way that information about the Passive House standard is being shared – Passive House books such as those by Mary James, news articles in papers all over the US including the New York Times, and even radio coverage by NPR has helped to spread the word about Passive House. I’ll do my bit and keep blogging on all things Passive House.