Mother Earth Living

Sustainable by the Sea: An Eco-Friendly Coast Home

By Misty McNally
March/April 2008
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The lighthouse windows provide natural light and ventilation. Solar energy generates some of the home's electricity. The metal roof collects nontoxic rainwater-runoff, and vegetation on the green roof captures and diverts stormwater.

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To build their energy-efficient, solar- and geothermal-powered, water-saving dream home on the coast north of Seattle, Dave and Anna Porter found inspiration from the ocean. Their 2,700-square-foot home features beach glass, seascape colors and a lighthouse.

The Porters reused materials from a cabin they deconstructed, diverting 80 percent of materials from the landfill. Their goal is to earn certifications from Built Green, Energy Star, American Lung Association Health House, Environments for Living and LEED for Homes.

The home has many green features:

• The lighthouse windows provide natural light and ventiliation.

• Solar energy generates some of the home's electricity.

• Metal roof for nontoxic rainwater-runoff collection

• High-efficiency windows

• Rainwater catchment system for landscaping feeds 600-gallon cistern under deck.

• Vegetation on green roof captures and diverts stormwater.

• Green Seal-certified, low-VOC paint

• Radiant in-floor heat eliminates forced-air dust.

Learn more here.

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