Nine LEED- (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) registered Coast Guard housing units in Florida could have energy bills as low as $165 per month due to energy-performance strategies provided by E3 Building Sciences, the consulting company asserts. The residences are expected to achieve LEED for Homes Silver certification this year.
The Marathon Key Coast Guard housing units include three single-family 2,180-sq.-ft. homes and three 2,043-sq.-ft. duplexes. The residences stand on concrete stilts for elevation amid ocean storm surges. Category 5 hurricane-resistant walls, which have an R-Value of 19, were built with Royal Concrete Concepts' preengineered wall systems. Additional green features include Low-E impact-resistant windows, radiant heat-reflecting metal roofs, and drought-resistant plantings.
On the project, E3 Building Sciences performs two roles. As LEED for Homes Provider, it verifies required LEED construction documents submitted by the project team before forwarding those records to the U.S. Green Building Council, which will ultimately determine the level of LEED certification. As HERS (Home Energy Rating System) Rater, the consultants complete energy modeling, inspections, and testing of the homes.
The E3 team conducted a thermal bypass inspection in late 2009 to determine if the housing units will earn the design's anticipated HERS score of 68. According to EPA, homes assigned a HERS Index Score less than 70 are at least 30 percent more efficient than code homes (based on 2004 IECC).