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Look What's Next Door: A Carbon Neutral House

This house only comes in green.

The first newly constructed, carbon neutral house on the East Coast is opening its doors to the public in October. The Green House, as it’s been named, uses approximately 70 to 80 percent less energy per square foot than a comparable new house.

“The family living here can live with virtually no carbon footprint as a result of their day to day activities,” said Mark Lowhan, senior vice president of the West Group, which built the home. “The house uses a super energy efficient design and renewable energy systems.”

The house, located in McLean, Va., was built to show how far green technology has come. A few of the elements that help make the 4,000 square-foot structure carbon neutral include a geothermal system for heating and cooling, a solar hot- water system, solar panels and wind turbines to generate on-site electricity, LED lighting, low-flow water fixtures as well as a rain-water capture system, structural insulated panel construction and a green roof system.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, approximately two thirds of greenhouse gases come from commercial and residential buildings. The average house produces twice as many greenhouse emissions as a car.

The Green House will be open for tours from Oct. 10-30. For more information, visit CharityWorks GreenHouse.