» Building Construction, HVAC, and Landscape Design

A post-occupancy evaluation of a green rated and conventional on-campus residence hall

Green buildings increasingly attract attention in the real estate sector, and the United States is no exception. Studies indicate that green rated buildings may bring higher rents and sales prices. One reason for this inequity is that the indoor environment of these buildings may outperform conventional buildings. The main objective of this paper is to conduct a post-occupancy evaluation (POE) to compare the indoor environment in a LEED certified, on-campus residence hall with a similar, non-green rated residence hall. Results are evaluated to determine if green buildings really outperform. The results suggest that the green rated building outperformed the conventional building in the majority of the indoor environmental aspects, but not all. These results can inform a cost-benefit analysis of green features for new construction and refurbishments. Read More

Native Shrubs for the Increasingly Challenging Landscape Environment

The sustainable landscape featuring native plants is a rapidly expanding trend in horticulture. Native plants enhance the local ecology by providing habitat for wildlife and support for pollinators. A number of important ornamentals have been identified as invasive and will no longer be available due to plant bans, both voluntary and involuntary. Native species are by definition not invasive and offer a sustainable alternative. This article previously appeared in the Connecticut Botanical Society Newsletter About the Author: Dr. Jessica Lubell is an Associate Professor of Horticulture at the University of Connecticut. She has 15 years of experience working with the green industry. She has worked closely with growers to expand production of new native shrubs. Dr. Lubell is the 2015 recipient of the New England Nursery Association Young Nursery Professional Award. You can follow her research and outreach work on Facebook at Native Plant Gal. Read More

Islands on the Edge: Housing Development and Other Threats to America's Pacific and Caribbean Island Forests (2014)

This report provides an overview of expected housing density changes and related impacts to private forests on America’s islands in the Pacific and Carribbean, specifically Hawaii, Guam, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The vulnerability of island forests to conversion for housing development, introduction and spread of invasive species, and risk of uncharacteristic wildfire, among other concerns are discussed. The maps and projections suggest that in localized areas from 3 to 25 percent of private forest land is likely to experience a substantial increase in housing density from 2000 to 2030. Resource managers, developers, community leaders, and landowners should consider the impacts of housing development and invasive species on ecosystem services in coming decades. Read More

Environmental Control Tech (HVAC&R): Building Operations Report

Research on the current situation and trends in buildings and facility operations. Summarizes the steps necessary for building automation technicians to obtain the skills required to operate high performance buildings today and in the future. Read More

Building Science

KEEP receives its primary funding through Focus on Energy, Wisconsin’s statewide resource for energy efficiency and renewable energy. Focus on Energy works with eligible Wisconsin residents and businesses to install cost effective energy efficiency and renewable energy projects. Focus information, resources, and financial incentives help to implement projects that otherwise would not be completed, or to complete projects sooner than scheduled. Its efforts help Wisconsin residents and businesses manage rising energy costs, promote in-state economic development, protect our environment and control the state’s growing demand for electricity and natural gas Read More

LSU Professor Evaluates Photocatalytic Pavements

Article describes a Louisiana State University scientific experiment with road pavement that reduces pollution through self-cleaning and air purification qualities. Basic evaluation and data collection methods for a year-long study are described. Read More

Energy Innovation Portal: Linking Energy Technologies with Market Opportunities

Find information on energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies available for licensing developed by U.S. Department of Energy laboratories and participating research institutions. Includes 300 technical summaries, 11,000 patents, and 3,000 patents pending. Read More

IAQ Tools for Schools: Action Kit

Instructions, guides, and videos for running a school or district-wide program to improve indoor air quality. Read More

A Citizen’s Guide to Radon: The Guide To Protecting Yourself And Your Family From Radon

Radon is estimated to cause many thousands of deaths each year. That’s because when you breathe air containing radon, you can get lung cancer. In fact, the Surgeon General has warned that radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States today. Only smoking causes more lung cancer deaths. If you smoke and your home has high radon levels, your risk of lung cancer is especially high. Read More

A Citizen’s Guide to Radon

Instructions on how to test for radon and interpret the results. Read More

Mission

EERL's mission is to be the best possible online collection of environmental and energy sustainability resources for community college educators and for their students. The resources are also available for practitioners and the public.

EERL & ATEEC

EERL is a product of a community college-based National Science Foundation Center, the Advanced Technology Environmental and Energy Center (ATEEC), and its partners.

Contact ATEEC 563.441.4087 or by email ateec@eicc.edu