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RMI Outlet

Buildings

Energy Efficient Buildings: Institutional Barriers and Opportunities

In this 1992 paper, Amory Lovins explains that buildings are rarely built to use energy efficiently, despite the sizeable costs that inefficient designs impose on building owners, occupants, and the utility companies that serve them. The reasons for this massive market failure have to do with the institutional framework within…

NMB Bank Headquarters: The Impressive Performance of a Green Building

This paper describes the development, design, and construction of an early green building, the NMB Bank Headquarters in Amsterdam. The integrated project team worked across disciplines to design the building. The team included architects, construction engineers, landscape architects, energy engineers, and artists. This paper details the green characteristics of the…

If It’s Not Efficient, It’s Not Beautiful

In this brief 1991 article in Fine Homebuilding, Amory Lovins argues that beautiful homes are not only finely crafted and designed, but energy efficient as well. Lovins describes the efficiency measures used to design his own home in Snowmass, CO. These techniques include glazed mirrors, compact fluorescent lights, and superefficient…

Negawatt Revolution

This paper from 1990 describes electricity and cost savings potential. The examples given show how technology from the time could be harnessed to save three-fourths of electricity in use by companies. In the examples provided, savings can be found from lighting improvements, such as switching from incandescent lamps to compact…

Four Revolutions in Electric Efficiency

In this paper from 1990, Amory Lovins discuses four changes impacting electricity demand. He argues that demand for electricity is altered profoundly by new technologies for improved end-use efficiency, new ways to finance and deliver those technologies to customers, cultural change within utilities, and regulatory reforms to reward efficient behavior.