Taos is a perfect location for creating a green place to live. Our real estate is ideal for exploring choices as we are the solar capital of the world. If you are interested in Taos land or homes we are the right real estate brokers to help you on your journey. We know the land and home real estate market and we know Taos.
Aerated Autoclaved Concrete (AAC):
Precast concrete that is cured by steam pressure inside a kiln called an
autoclave. The material is lighter weight than conventional concrete and
has good insulation properties.
A component of a solar heater that soaks up heat from the sun and helps
transmit it to the water of a heating system.
Advanced Framing – OVE (optimum value engineering):
Reduces unnecessary lumber use. Improves whole-wall R-Value by reducing
thermal bridging and maximizing the wall area that is insulated.
Appliance Energy Efficiency Ratings:
The ratings under which specified
appliances convert energy sources into useful energy, as determined by procedures
established by the U.S. Department
of Energy. Source: U.S. Department of Energy / Office of Energy Efficiency
and Renewable Energy.
An instrument, a capture hood that measures airflow.
Depending on who you ask, bamboo is the new, eco-friendly product
of the season. Used to make everything from blankets to shoes to flooring,
is a versatile and, more importantly, fast-growing and replenishable
The ability of a material to decompose through natural processes
and eventually be reabsorbed by the natural environment. Biodegradable products
all plant and animal material, paper, food waste and fibers. Plastic,
glass and metals are not biodegradable. However, even biodegradable materials
will not break down once they are buried in a landfill because they are
deprived of oxygen, which is necessary for decomposition. COMPOSTING
optimal conditions for biodegradation. The “Biodegradable” label
on products like cosmetics, cleaning supplies, packaging or household
items is not necessarily reliable because it is not verified and follows
Biomass is any organic material made from plants or animals. Domestic
biomass resources include agricultural and forestry residues, municipal
industrial wastes, and terrestrial and aquatic crops grown solely for
energy purposes. Biomass can be converted to other usable forms of energy
an attractive petroleum alternative for a number of reasons. Source:
U.S. Department of Energy / Biomass Program
A process that uses biological organisms to clean up contaminated
water or soil; often used in oil-spill cleanup.
Blower Door Test:
Quantifies air leakage in a building. Performed to get
a HERS rating.
A former industrial site, particularly one compromised by hazardous
contaminants; examples are former dry cleaning establishments and gas stations.
A carbon footprint is a measure of the impact human activities have on
the environment in terms of the amount of greenhouse gases produced, measured
in units of carbon dioxide. Source: Carbon Footprint
A system intended to equalize carbon production around the globe by trading
greenhouse gas emissions-typically produced through fossil fuels consumption
for environmentally friendly actions, such as planting trees and using clean
Made from recycled newsprint, usually loose-fill. Reduces air leakage and
Cementuous Lap – Fiber Cement Siding:
Resistant to fire, extreme weather, moisture and mold. Low toxicity.
Compact Fluorescent Lamp (CFL:
Small fluorescent light bulbs that can be
used in place of incandescent light bulbs. CFLs consume significantly less
electricity and last 8-10 times
longer than incandescent bulbs.
It may come as a surprise to wine aficionados, but cork is able to
do more than keep bottles sealed tight. Found in Ugg boots, floor tiles,
and everything in between, cork is fully recyclable, flexible and repels
The use of direct, diffused or reflected sunlight to provide
supplemental lighting for building interiors. . Source: U.S. Department
of Energy Efficiency
and Renewable Energy
A written report prepared by a qualified party evaluating
energy usage, highlighting weak points in energy efficiency, and identifying
measures. A less rigorous process than an energy audit.
A written report prepared by a qualified tester using methods
and measurements that comply with industry standards. An audit typically
of detailed data and an engineering analysis. The result is a report
of detailed project costs and savings expected when an energy-efficient
is completed and operated as designed.
Energy Efficient Mortgage (EEM):
A mortgage that figures conserved energy
into the loan in the form of credits as an energy-efficiency incentive,
mostly for new homes already certified
as energy efficient.
Energy Improvement Mortgage (EIM):
A mortgage intended for existing homes
for the purpose of installing energy efficiency improvements.
A certification granted by the Environmental Protection Agency
and the US Department of Energy for household appliances and buildings that
at specified levels of energy efficiency.
Energy Star is a joint program of the U.S. Environmental Protection
Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Department of Energy helping us all save money
the environment through energy efficient products and practices. In 1992
EPA introduced ENERGY STAR as a voluntary labeling program designed to
identify and promote energy-efficient products to reduce greenhouse gas
Source: Energy Star
Ethylene Propylene Diene terpolymer is a single-ply rubber roofing
membrane. Good choice for low-slope roofs. Exhibits a high degree of ozone,
weathering and abrasion resistance, and outstanding low temperature flexibility.
ERV/HRV (energy recovery ventilator/ heat recovery ventilator):
air into a dwelling, cleans and evenly circulates the fresh air and expels
stale, polluted air. Controls humidity. Minimizes heat loss.
ERVs are used in the middle and southern U.S. HRVs are primarily for
cold northern climates.
Crops produced according to principles in which poor
farmers in developing countries receive fair process for their products,
workers enjoy safe working
conditions and fair wages, communities receive development assistance
and investment in social programs and crops are grown with sustainable
farming methods and without the use of pesticides or genetically modified
Forced Air 90:
Furnace with AFUE (annual fuel utilization efficiency) rating
of 90% or better. 15% more efficient than standard model furnaces.
FSC-Certified, Forest Stewardship Council Certified:
Wood harvested from
forests that meet standards for environmentally-responsible forestry management,
such as replanting and maintaining of wildlife habitats.
Energy extracted from the natural heat of the earth’s
rocks and fluids.
Geothermal – GHP (geothermal heat pump):
Uses the ground to provide
heating, cooling and hot water. Uses earth’s
natural heat. Most efficient heating and cooling technology available.
Guidelines published by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC)
providing standards for advertising claims that a product is green.
Surfaces that reduce the temperature of buildings’ rooftops
by absorbing heat as well as trapping dust and adding sound and temperature
An undeveloped plot of land.
A certification for construction products, such as windows,
paints, and adhesives, attesting that the products were manufactured and
can be used
with minimal impact on the environment.
Falsely promoting or exaggerating the greenness of a product
Water from laundry, bathing, and similar uses that can be reused
for non potable activities.
A site, such as a mall or commercial facility, that has been
abandoned leaving behind a large developed but empty area.
HERS, Home Energy Rating System:
A home energy rating that supplies credible
verification for a home’s
energy-efficiency using the home’s construction plans and the results
of an onsite inspections.
High Performance Building:
A high-performance building is a building with
energy, economic and environmental performance that is substantially better
than standard practice. It is energy
efficient, so it saves money and natural resources. It is a healthy place
to live and work for its occupants and has relatively low impact on the
environment. All this is achieved through a process called whole-building
design. Source: U.S. Department of Energy Office of Energy Efficiency
and Renewable Energy
A prediction, made by a geologist in the late 1950s,
that classified fossil fuels as finite, and said that after a peak time
access to these resources
would rapidly decline, eventually diminishing entirely.
Indoor Air Quality (IAQ):
A measurement of the overall cleanliness of the
air within a building or home.
Insulating Concrete Forms (ICFs):
Insulating Concrete Forms (ICFs) are rigid
plastic foam forms that hold concrete in place during curing and remain
in place afterwards to serve
as thermal insulation for concrete walls. The foam sections are lightweight
and result in energy efficient, durable construction.
Insulated Frame Window:
Instead of a solid wood or vinyl window, insulation
is placed between the exterior and interior panels. Increases R-value. Reduces
Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED):
LEED is the nationally
accepted benchmark for the design, construction and operation of high performance
green buildings. LEED gives building owners
and operators the tools they need to have an immediate and measurable
impact on their buildings performances. LEED promotes a whole-building approach
to sustainability by recognizing performance in five key areas of human
and environmental health: sustainable site development, water savings,
efficiency, materials selection and indoor environmental quality. Source:
U.S. Green Building Council
Light-Emitting Diode Lamp (LED):
A technology that produces light by causing
electrons to flow through the lamp and release energy in the form of light.
Excessive illumination of night-skies by artificial light.
Low emittance coating applied to windows to reflect
40-70% of heat normally transmitted through glass. Improves heating and
A landscaping method that uses native plants to conserve
and create natural habitats that provide nurturing environments for wildlife.
PV (photovoltaic system – solar electricity) tied into
the electric grid creating electricity for building and grid during the
uses electric from the grid at night. No storage batteries.
On Demand Water Heater:
A device that heats water rapidly as it is dispensed
from the faucet. Eliminates the need for a conventional tank water heater.
A solar energy system that captures light from the sun and
converts it into electricity.
Pirana Septic System:
Grows species of natural bacteria, a form of microbe,
in your septic tank. Digests the wastes in tank. Multiply and move to drainfield
Permeable Landscaping Materials:
For walkways, patios and driveways. Reduces
run-off and erosion. Increases air, water and nutrients to roots of neighboring
plants. Sand, crushed rock,
pervious pavers, wood chips, ground-cover plants.
The measure of insulation’s ability to resist heat traveling
through it. The higher the R-value, the better the thermal performance of
A naturally occurring gas, colorless and odorless, that has been
shown to cause adverse health effects. Radon gas often enters a structure
through cellar walls and floors.
An area, planted with deep-rooted plants, that collects
storm water runoff and encourages absorption into the ground.
Rammed Earth Construction:
A building technique involving dense compression
of clay and dirt materials to create thick, flat surfaces, such as walls
Materials destined for the garbage dump but were, instead, rescued
and refurbished as a new product. The floor of an old bowling alley can
and turned into a dining room table, or bricks from a demolished structure
can be used to build a fireplace hearth. The use of glass shards in ceramic
tiles is another example of the use of reclaimed material.
Resources that can be replaced after use so that they are not
permanently diminished or depleted. Renewable energy sources include the
power), wind, flowing water and geothermal heat. Renewable material resources
include algae, grasses and some fast-growing trees. Substituting renewable
resources for nonrenewable resources (e.g., coal, oil, gasoline and other
fossil fuels) is the key to sustainability.
Structural insulated panels are high performance building panels used
in floors, walls, and roofs for residential and light commercial buildings.
The panels are typically made by sandwiching a core of sized foam plastic
insulation between two structural skins of oriented strand board (OSB).
Hot water from the sun for heating and domestic use.
Meeting the needs of the present without diminishing the
ability of future generations to meet their needs. Sustainability also means
that human practices
do not result in the permanent damage, alteration or depletion of the
environment, ecosystems, species or natural resources.
An insulating wall that traps heat and releases into the home
for heating, or deflects heat.
Redevelopment of sites, in the core of metropolitan areas,
for commercial and residential purposes.
VOC (volatile organic compound):
An organic gas with harmful effects
on air quality. VOCs are frequently associated with paint, pesticides, carpet,
An estimation of the amount of water used.
A landscaping method used in arid areas. Uses native plants
that can tolerate infrequent watering.
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