B.C.’s first zero-energy home – no bike riding required

Posted by Rumin Mann
January 10th, 2012

When he began building B.C.’s first net-zero-energy-use home, Whistler resident Richard Wyne wondered whether the end product might turn out to look like a geodesic dome. What the ski patroller got was anything but.

Perched high on a hill on a south-facing lot in a neighbourhood named Rainbow, with expansive views of Whistler and Blackcomb mountains, his home has all the luxuries you’d expect from a new development in the popular resort, as well as the type of eco-friendly design that screams green.

“I love that the home is comfortable and normal, while at the same time socially responsible,” says Mr. Wyne, who also works as a ski patroller. “I believe we’ve demonstrated an ability to fulfill our moral environmental obligation without sacrificing our standard of living.”

You won’t find Mr. Wyne and his wife Jennifer riding a stationary bike to power their toaster or computer. You will, however, find practically every energy-efficient device and detail available in the pair’s 2,200-square-foot, three-level house, built by Whistler’s RDC Fine Homes to Built Green-platinum standard.

The most visually striking element is the home’s solar photovoltaic system. Six hundred square feet of steep solar panels convert sunlight into electricity to ensure the home creates as much energy as it consumes.

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