“Sustainable” is an important and widely-used word, now more than ever. On the other hand, it’s also widely misused. So what does “sustainable” really mean when it comes to home-building?
Sustainable literally means “able to continue without an end in sight.” Any finite resource which can be used up, or any practice that can’t continue indefinitely, isn’t sustainable. Unlike the word “green,” which covers anything that’s intended to support the health of the environment, “sustainable” is objective and very definable.
For thousands of years throughout history, sustainable houses were built of on-site materials using design strategies adapted to local climates. For example, the thermal mass of the adobe homes in the clay-abundant American southwest kept people cool during the day and warm at night. In England, where there was plenty of rain, soil and trees, they built wattle-and-daub timber-frames with a limestone plaster to fend off the wet weather.
As petroleum was discovered, people across the world began to rely on non-local materials, using designs that didn’t automatically result in a comfortable living space. The conventional home became ubiquitous. It was a practical choice no matter where you lived: energy was cheap, the environment wasn’t a concern, and any discomfort could be relieved by tweaking the thermostat.
But today, not everyone is satisfied with the conventional model anymore. Many people are no longer willing to accept the inefficiency, environmental impact, non-renewable energy and unsustainable practices associated with conventional building. Which brings us to modern passive home design.
At Clarum, this means a home that…
At Clarum Homes, we’re proud to offer an alternative to the unsustainable norm of conventional building: our passive homes and passive-inspired homes. We’re proud to say they are a comfortable, beautiful, responsible alternative to traditional homes. We think you’ll be proud of your Clarum home, too.
To learn more, call us at 650.322.7069.