Towards Net Zero Energy Schools – Reading List


The readings below are related to John Straube’s August 2017 LAB Event on school design and achieving net-zero energy buildings. They address a range of issues including costs and key design strategies. Together, these resources provide a general introduction to this topic and related research.

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Top 5 Things to Read:

#1: Feasibility of ZNE by Building Type and Climate
Charles Eley, available from (requires purchase or ASHRAE membership)
This July 2017 AHSRAE Journal article discusses both new construction and retrofits. See also the ASHRAE Advanced Energy Design Guides, which include a guide for K-12 schools.

#2: Whole Building Design Guide Design Recommendations: Elementary School
Ellen Larson Vaughan, available from
An introduction to school design, including building attributes and US codes and standards.

#3: National Best Practices Manual for Building High Performance Schools
NREL, available from
This 450-page compendium provides recommendations tailored to each USDOE climate zone.

#4: Pilot Projects Announced for CaGBC’s Emerging Zero Carbon Building Standard
Canadian Consulting Engineer, available from
Describes one example of an approach to net zero in Canada. See also Defining Net-Zero: The Next Step in High-Performance Building Design, discussing one of the CaGBC’ Zero Carbon pilot projects.

#5: Achieving Net Zero
Kenneth L. Seibert, available from
An example of an early NZE school project, in Kentucky, IL. For a Canadian example, see Green Show-and-Tell by Victor Halder and David Braun.

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