Virginia Residential Energy Code Field Study Report Released!

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Building Energy Codes Program is conducting a series of research studies investigating building energy code implementation to assist states in measuring energy code compliance and to identify areas of focus for future education & training initiatives.

Southeast Energy Efficiency Alliance (SEEA) led the initiative in Virginia and provided funding for Viridiant to perform a field study in 2017-2018 to assess how well the residential energy code was being implemented across Virginia in new construction single family buildings. Following Viridiant’s data collection and analysis by the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), the Baseline Report was released in October 2019. Key findings include:

  • Significant energy and cost savings potential exist through increased compliance with targeted measures. Potential statewide annual energy savings are 150,752 MMBtu, which equates to nearly $3 million in cost savings, and emission reductions of nearly 75,000 MT CO2e. Over a 30-year period, these impacts grow to 70 MMBtu, $1.3 billion, and over 34 million CO2e in avoided emissions.
  • Duct leakage and envelope air leakage measures showed the greatest potential for energy savings.
  • To achieve potential energy savings focus should be applied to energy code compliance-improvement programs including educational, training, and outreach initiatives.

Based on the results of the study, SEEA provided funding for Viridiant to lead energy code trainings across Virginia. These trainings are intended to provide code officials, builders, architects, and subcontractors with a better understanding of compliance with the targeted energy code measures and how to meet 2015 energy code changes.

Learn more:

Award Finalists Honored at the Building Sustainability Conference & Awards

On Thursday, April 25th, regional leaders in the advancement of sustainable design and construction were honored at Viridiant’s Building Sustainability Conference & Awards. The annual event highlighted efforts to build sustainability in our communities and infrastructure with a focus on health, resilience, and innovation. This year’s event aimed to educate and recognize innovative solutions of today to meet the needs of the evolving building industry of tomorrow.

Viridiant hosted four conference sessions and an inspiring keynote address from Dr. Danny Avula. The featured sessions and speakers shared knowledge and inspired discussion, all in an effort to drive change in the protection of our living environments, both inside and out. The speakers’ presentations are available for download HERE. Topics included:

  • Energy Code Research
  • Municipal Sustainability Programs in Virginia
  • Building Resilience into Commercial and Residential Structures
  • Construction Delivery of the Future
  • Keynote: Building a Culture of Health in RVA

Awards were presented to recognize the region’s leaders in high-performance construction with a focus on projects, programs, and initiatives that represent the future of sustainable building. Nominees and winners were honored in a variety of categories based on work completed in the last three years in the Mid-Atlantic region. Award winners include:

  • Visionary Award: Sustainable Design Consulting, LLC (SDC)

  • Program, Initiative, or Partnership: Arlington Initiative to Rethink Energy (AIRE)

  • Next Generation: Jennifer Kearney – University of Richmond

  • Builder or Developer: Metro Green – Arlington, VA

  • Habitat for Humanity Affiliate: Habitat for Humanity in the Roanoke Valley

  • Project or Development: Presented to outstanding projects or developments with a focus on energy efficiency, integrated design, resource efficiency and conservation, resiliency, innovation, and/or community impact.
  • Top High Performance Homes: Presented to the top three homes certified by Viridiant in 2018 with consideration for design, construction, energy efficiency, and systems.

Special thanks to our 2019 event sponsors!

Habitat for Humanity Volunteer Day with DMME

Viridiant staff recently visited a single-family home under renovation by Richmond Metropolitan Habitat for Humanity and were joined by volunteers from the Virginia Department of Mines, Minerals, and Energy (DMME). The home is a 1,200 square foot cape-cod built in 1969 and located just outside the Randolph neighborhood in Richmond, VA. Like many Habitat homes, it is pursuing EarthCraft certification.

During the volunteer day, Viridiant’s Executive Director KC Bleile talked about the unique partnership between Viridiant and Habitat for Humanity as well as the history behind the EarthCraft program and its introduction into Virginia. Viridiant Technical Advisor Bill Riggs discussed the requirements associated with meeting the EarthCraft certification, HERS modeling, and the quality assurance provided through the inspection process. Additionally, blower door testing was conducted at the home to show the method for capturing envelope leakage and provide a first-hand demonstration to volunteers. This Habitat home has undergone extensive renovations: completely gutting the interior; re-insulating; installing brand new mechanical equipment, appliances, and finishes. These improvements will result in a much more comfortable, healthy, and energy-efficient home.

The benefits of green construction are especially apparent in affordable housing. That’s why Habitat for Humanity and other nonprofits partner with Viridiant. For families fighting their way out of poverty, energy-efficient homes represent a major step toward their American dream. Every gift to Viridiant pushes that dream forward, helping us touch more buildings, educate more industry professionals, and advocate for high performance construction. Whatever the amount, charitable contributions make our services more affordable, fuel research, and drive educational outreach. We hope you’ll stay involved in our vital work and consider making a tax-deductible gift.

Winners Honored at 9th Annual Sustainable Leadership Awards

Winners Honored at 9th Annual Sustainable Leadership Awards

On Thursday, April 19th, just three days before Earth Day, regional leaders in the advancement of sustainable design and construction were honored at Viridiant’s Annual Sustainable Leadership Awards. The annual awards recognize the premier developers, builders, government officials, and other industry professionals for their work in advancing the benefits of sustainable building through green building programs including EarthCraft, ENERGY STAR, and LEED for Homes. Winners were announced at a reception held at the Virginia Museum of History and Culture which drew over 150 guests.

Prior to the award presentation and reception, Viridiant hosted a lecture. Speakers from the Virginia Center for Housing Research at Virginia Tech discussed a recent study showing that EarthCraft certification in Virginia’s LIHTC multifamily housing not only lowers energy use, but can also cost less to build.

During the program, attendees also enjoyed speakers:

  • John Warren, Director of Virginia’s Department of Mines, Minerals, & Energy
  • Craig Toalson, Chief Executive Officer of the Home Builders Association of Virginia
  • Robert Reed, Senior Director of the Southface Energy Institute

Award nominees and winners were honored in a variety of categories to cover new construction, renovation, single family, multifamily, and more. Winners were awarded based on projects completed in 2017. This year’s award winners include:

  • Visionary Award: Bill Shelton, Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development

  

  • Single Family Developer: Ryan Homes – Williamsburg, VA

  

  • Single Family Builder: Stony Point Design/Build – Charlottesville, VA

  

  • Single Family New Construction Project: Home on Carriage Hill Lane – J. Hall Homes

  

  • Single Family Renovation Project: Home on Hanover Ave – Habitat for Humanity in the Roanoke Valley

  

  • Single Family Debut Award: Old Dominion Innovations – Richmond, VA

  

  • Habitat for Humanity Affiliate: Richmond Metropolitan Habitat for Humanity

  

  • Multifamily Developer: SCG Development – Fairfax Corner, VA

  

  • Multifamily New Construction Project: Newport News Seniors – Landbridge Development & RHG, Inc.

  

  • Multifamily Renovation Project: Highland Park Senior Apartments, Richmond, VA – CPDC

  

  • Top Ten High Performance Homes:

6th Annual Richmond Earth Day 5K Race Without a Trace

Thanks to all the folks who came out for our 6th Annual Earth Day 5K Race Without a Trace! We had a blast and we hope you did too. If you participated and would like to see your race time, click the race results button below. If you do not see your time but you personally recorded it and would like us to add to our records please let us know by emailing admin@viridiant.org.

You might have noticed photographers out on the course with you, at the start/finish line, or at the awards presentation. Check out all of the amazing shots they took at the Earth Day 5K. Each year we try to improve the event and we would appreciate your feedback. We hope race participants will take a few minutes to complete our short survey to help make next year’s race even better!

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5K Sponsors & Partners:

Thank you to our event sponsors. We could not have brought you this event without the support of our sponsors and partners!

 

 

Wexford Manor Dedication

On December 12th, members of the Viridiant team joined Wesley Housing Development Corporation and president and CEO Shelley Murphy for the dedication of Wexford Manor Apartments, a 74-unit development funded by utilizing both 9% and 4% low-income housing tax credits in Fairfax County, Virginia.

  

Wesley Housing Development Corporation has been a pioneer in the affordable housing sector in Northern Virginia since 1974 and has sponsored the development of over 2,100 total housing units serving over 25,000 individuals. With housing costs in Fairfax and surrounding areas being some of the most expensive in the country, Wexford Manor is a prime example of the dedication Wesley Housing has toward to the community it serves. In addition to its affordability, Wexford Manor obtained EarthCraft Gold Certification through the diligent work of the project team, including Wiencek and Associates, Harkins Builders, Inc., and the guidance of Chris Conway, technical advisor for Viridiant. Through EarthCraft certification, Wexford Manor is able to provide low utility bills and exceptional occupant air quality, comfort, and durability standards to residents. Improvements made to the Community Resource Center allow for the expansion of one of a kind tenant services, including specialized programs for adults, children, families, and seniors. Congratulations to Wesley Housing and the Wexford Manor team!

 

 


Photo Credits: Wesley Housing Development Corporation

Annual Report & October Newsletter

Click here to see the full October Newsletter

Dear Friends & Supporters,

Thanks to your generous support, Viridiant continues to deliver the EarthCraft family of programs to thousands of individuals each year. After a decade of service, over 21,000 families are housed in sustainable, energy-efficient homes proven to save 35% when compared to standard code construction, reducing resources used, saving energy, and ensuring residents have comfortable, healthy housing. We are excited to share our 2016 Annual Report so you can better appreciate the lasting impact that you helped build!

We hope you will consider supporting Viridiant’s mission this October as we celebrate National Energy Awareness Month to spread the word about the importance of sustainably managing energy resources. Any gift helps Viridiant build a more sustainable future for all. Viridiant will continue to administer programs and develop services that will accelerate the shift toward high-performance buildings throughout the industry.

Sincerely,

KC Bleile
Executive Director


2016 annual report

Download Viridiant’s 2016 Annual Report to learn more about our impact over the last year, including highlights on our Habitat for Humanity Virginia partnership, The Little Ten Housing Authorities, 2016 EarthCraft energy savings, and the Single Family Renovation Project of the Year! The annual report was mailed to our supporters in August. Interested in getting a hard copy? Email Viridiant at admin@viridiant.org

 


upcoming events

LECTURE: HEALTHY HOMES, HEALTHY COMMUNITIES

Thursday, October 19, 3:00 – 4:30 pm | free
Location: In-person lecture @ Gather, Richmond, VA | Online via webinar

Join us for our October lecture to highlight the greater Richmond community’s work on healthy homes and healthy communities that support socioeconomic and physical health necessary to build strong communities. The lecture will cover recent research on Market Value Analysis by Richmond Memorial Health Foundation to help communities understand real estate market conditions and plan a coordinated and equitable investment strategy, an introduction to the Maggie Walker Community Land Trust (MWCLT) and associated benefits, a case study on Project: HOMES’ first EarthCraft Home of the MWCLT, currently under construction, and the City of Richmond’s efforts to bring the nationally accredited Green and Healthy Homes Initiative program to Richmond.

[trx_button type=”square” style=”filled” size=”medium” bg_style=”custom” color=”#fff” link=”https://fs12.formsite.com/EarthCraftVA/form46/index.html” popup=”no”]Register[/trx_button]

 


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Viridiant Spring 2017 Newsletter

View Online

Spring 2017

by the numbers

TOP Q1 2017 EARTHCRAFT CERTIFIED HOMES BY CERTIFICATION LEVEL & ENERGY EFFICIENCY
  1. Bench Mark Builders – HERS 30, EarthCraft certified
  2. Green Valley Builders – HERS 44, EarthCraft and ENERGY STAR certified
  3. Green Mountain Construction – HERS 47, EarthCraft certified

upcoming events

EARTHCRAFT BUILDING PROFESSIONAL TRAINING
Wednesday, May 17th, 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Fairlington Community Center, Arlington, VA

This 7-hour builder training provides a comprehensive overview of best practices for sustainable construction and design as well as explores how the EarthCraft program can help you get started in the green building sector.

For more information and to register, click below.

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BLUEPRINT FOR THE FUTURE DESIGN COMPETITION
Phase I Submissions Due May 26th
Fairlington Community Center, Arlington, VA

The deadline for Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development‘s Blueprint for the Future Design Competition has been extended to May 26! Register at the link below, then submit a short narrative, a site plan, and two sets of scaled drawings. The competition is open to all Virginians, including students, amateurs or professionals, and individuals or teams. The winning design will receive a cash prize and be announced and displayed at the Governor’s Housing Conference![trx_button type=”square” style=”filled” size=”medium” bg_style=”custom” color=”#fff” link=”http://www.vagovernorshousingconference.com/index.php/vaghc-annoucements/blueprint-for-the-future-design-competition” popup=”no”]MORE DETAILS[/trx_button]

LECTURE: EARTHCRAFT HOUSE SITE VISIT

Thursday, June 15th, 3:00 – 4:30 PM followed by our Summer Social
This lecture, held in conjunction with the Home Builders Association of Richmond’s EarthCraft Builders Council, will take place at a Richmond-area EarthCraft home. It will be followed by our yearly Summer Social! More details and registration coming soon.

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sustainable leadership awards

CELEBRATING LEADERS IN ADVANCING SUSTAINABLE HOUSING

Regional leaders in the advancement of sustainable design and construction were recently honored as winners of Viridiant’s Sustainable Leadership Awards. The event, which took place on April 20th, drew over 150 individuals representing home builders, non-profit and for-profit housing providers and developers, program sponsors, homeowners, affordable housing advocates, and those interested in creating green housing opportunities in Virginia. Attendees also enjoyed a housing policy and research panel with Art Bowen of Virginia Hosuing Development Authority, Andrew McCoy of Virginia Center for Housing Research at Virginia Tech, and Angela Navarro of the Office of Governor McAuliffe, moderated by Bob Adams of HDAdvisors. Pre-awards educational sessions also took place with Michael Hubbard of Dominion Virginia Power, Andrew McCoy of Virginia Center for Housing Research at Virginia Tech, and Sean Evensen- Shanley of Viridiant.

To learn more about this year’s winners, and help us celebrate their achievements, please click below.

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earth day 5K race without a trace

CELEBRATING SUSTAINABILITY WITH COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT

On Earth Day 2017, over 100 people came out for the 5th Annual Richmond Earth Day 5K Race Without a Trace, presented by Sigora Solar, showing off the best the city has to offer. Folks ran, walked, and strolled, many with their kids and furry friends, down the newly completed Virginia Capital Trail and saw the beauty of the James River and its downtown surroundings. Participants also learned easy ways to help the environment along the course and finished just half a mile from RVA Earth Day. Local plants and local gift cards were presented to winners in categories like leaders of the pack, best dressed, best dramatic finish and more. Electric vehicles were on hand to shuttle runners to the festival after the race. To learn more or see photos and race results, please click below.

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Did you miss our recent lectures?

FREE BULLETINS SHARED ON LECTURE TOPICS

In April, Viridiant hosted three educational sessions – two in advance of our Sustainable Leadership Awards and one during the awards presentation. We have prepared bulletins to summarize what was discussed during each of these lectures/educational sessions.

[trx_button type=”square” style=”filled” size=”medium” bg_style=”custom” color=”#fff” link=”https://www.viridiant.org/aboutus/research-and-resources/” popup=”no”]DOWNLOAD BULLETIN(S)[/trx_button]


green climate corp fellow pilot program

THE LITTLE TEN OF SOUTHWEST VA ONE OF 12 AWARDED NATIONAL FELLOWSHIP

On February 8, 2017, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) awarded The Little Ten Housing Authorities of Southwest Virginia, Inc. (The Little Ten) one of twelve spots nationwide in the Affordable Housing Utility Benchmarking Fellowship program. Through a competitive grant process, The Little Ten will receive a Climate Corp fellow during Summer 2017 to provide assessment of actual utility consumption for the portfolios of ten housing authorities.

The Little Ten, representing ten authorities in southwestern, rural Virginia, will leverage a Climate Corps fellow to identify a sample of the housing stock throughout the region, train authority representatives, create a benchmarking plan, initiate benchmarking, and with support from non-profit partner, Viridiant, provide options and return on investment (ROI) for utility improvement. This investment would lower residents’ utilities, provide more accurate utility allowances, and help housing authorities to strategically reinvest resources. Viridiant has committed to assist the fellow and housing authorities in interpreting benchmarking results, prioritizing opportunities to reduce utility cost through management, education, and resident operation and energy efficiency improvements and determining anticipated ROI.


lectures: help steer the conversation

We are constantly looking for opportunities to improve our lecture series overall, and as we plan the remainder of the 2017 series, we’re seeking your input on lecture topics. Please provide your thoughts below. You don’t need to have attended a lecture in the past to give us your feedback.

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your support matters

Viridiant, a 501c3 non-profit, prides itself on offering superior quality, affordable programs that can suit the needs of any builder or developer who shows a commitment to high performance home building. With nine full time employees in our Richmond office and technical advisors around the state, we strive to remove any financial barriers to green building by delivering our programs at a fraction of the cost of similar programs.

Residential buildings make up almost 27% of the energy consumption in Virginia. With your support, we can touch more houses, making a significant impact not only on the state’s energy use but also on the lives of the residents who will enjoy comfortable, healthy, and affordable homes.

Please consider making a donation to Viridiant today.

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partners

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sponsors

Winners Honored at 8th Annual Sustainable Leadership Awards

Winners Honored at 8th Annual Sustainable Leadership Awards

Regional leaders in the advancement of sustainable design and construction were recently honored as winners of Viridiant’s Sustainable Leadership Awards. Winners were announced at the organization’s 8th annual awards ceremony on April 20th at the Virginia Historical Society in downtown Richmond. The event drew over 150 individuals representing home builders, non-profit and for-profit housing providers and developers, program sponsors, homeowners, affordable housing advocates, and those interested in creating green housing opportunities in Virginia. During the program, attendees also enjoyed a housing policy and research panel – “Leveraging Partner Success Towards Economic, Environmental, and Structural Sustainability” with Art Bowen of Virginia Hosuing Development Authority, Andrew McCoy of Virginia Center for Housing Research at Virginia Tech, and Angela Navarro of the Office of Governor McAuliffe, moderated by Bob Adams of HDAdvisors. Pre-awards educational sessions also took place with Michael Hubbard of Dominion Virginia Power, Andrew McCoy of Virginia Center for Housing Research at Virginia Tech, and Sean Evensen-Shanley of Viridiant.

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Local groups recognized with green-building awards

Local groups recognized with green-building awards

Richmond BizSense

JONATHAN SPIERS APRIL 25, 2017

An environmentally friendly Fan home renovation was among local projects recognized last week at Richmond nonprofit Viridiant’s eighth annual Sustainable Leadership Awards.

The statewide group, which administers the EarthCraft brand of green-building programs, recognized Richmond developer Hollyport Ventures’ “Honor’s Corner” project with two awards at last week’s ceremony. The renovation of the 1909 home at 3200 Floyd Ave. was named single-family renovation project of the year and one of the top 10 high-performance homes of the year.

Hollyport Ventures is led by Richard Cross, who worked on the project with his son, Washington, D.C.-based architect R. Michael Cross. Richard Cross said the three-bedroom, 2½-bathroom home was a “full gut” rehab, with both chimneys and most interior walls removed.

Energy-saving features in the home include a geothermal heating and cooling system, “high performance” insulation and windows, low wattage LED lighting and Energy Star appliances, as well as solar technology and rainwater recycling. The home received the EPA-sponsored Energy Star award in addition to platinum LEED certification  – the highest possible designation from the U.S. Green Building Council.

The renovation of "Honor's Corner" at 3200 Floyd Ave. was named single-family renovation project of the year. (Hollyport Ventures)

The renovation of “Honor’s Corner” at 3200 Floyd Ave. was named single-family renovation project of the year. (Hollyport Ventures)

“Honor’s Corner” – named for Honor Patterson, a longtime resident of the home – also was recognized among the top 10 high-performance homes of the year, a list that included a home at 4713 Louisiana St. in the Villas at Rocketts Landing, a solar home development by Williamsburg-based Health-E-Community Enterprise of Virginia.

Other local winners included Midlothian-based Evergreen Homecrafters, which was named single-family builder of the year. Mike Toalson, who soon is retiring after 20 years as CEO of the Home Builders Association of Virginia, was presented with this year’s Visionary Award.

Local groups nominated for awards included Henrico-based Bain-Waring Builders in the single-family builder of the year category, Midlothian-based Theta Homes in the EarthCraft single-family debut category, and Richmond Metro Habitat for Humanity in the Habitat for Humanity affiliate of the year category.

Richmond-based Virginia Supportive Housing also was nominated in two categories: multifamily renovation project of the year, for its Studios II development in South Richmond, and multifamily new construction project of the year, for its Crescent Square community in Virginia Beach.

Viridiant presents the awards each year to recognize Virginia builders and developers who use sustainable design and construction in their projects. Formerly known as EarthCraft of Virginia, the group marked its 10th anniversary last year with a name change derived from the Latin word for “green.”

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