Flashback: Who Owns These Two Houses?
Original posting date: 04/28/2009
Neither you nor I will ever be able to own a house like either of these.
However, it does provide us with a startling example of environmental friendliness that may raise your eyebrows.
Keep in mind, the average size for a family home in the U.S. is around 2300 square feet.
This image shows a 20 room mansion (not including 8 bathrooms) heated by natural gas. Add on a pool (and a pool house) and a separate guest house, all heated by gas. In one month, this residence consumes more energy than the average American household does in a year. The average bill for electricity and natural gas runs over $2400 per month. In natural gas alone, this property consumes more than 20 times the national average for an American home. This house is not situated in a Northern or Midwestern ?snow belt? area. It?s in the South.
This image shows a residence designed by an architecture professor at a leading national university. This house incorporates every ?green? feature that current home construction can provide. The house is 4,000 square feet (4 bedrooms) and is nestled on a high prairie in the American southwest. A central closet in the house holds geothermal heat-pumps drawing ground water through pipes sunk 300 feet into the ground.
The water (usually 67 degrees F) heats the house in the winter and cools it in the summer. The system uses no fossil fuels such as oil or natural gas, and it consumes one-quarter the electricity required for a conventional heating/cooling system. Rainwater from the roof is collected and funneled into a 25,000 gallon underground cistern.
Wastewater from showers, sinks and toilets goes into underground purifying tanks and then into the cistern. This collected water then irrigates the land surrounding the house. Surrounding flowers and shrubs native to the area enable the property to blend into the surrounding rural landscape. The heating/cooling system is so efficient that initial plans to install solar panels were canceled.
The first house in the top image covers more than 10,000 square feet and is at Belle Meade, an upscale city suburb of Nashville, Tennessee, and is the home of the ?Environmentalist? Al Gore.
The second house is on a ranch near Crawford, Texas and it is the residence of the former President of the United States, George W. Bush, who we are endlessly told is a noted environmental vandal.
Gee! Sounds a little like an inconvenient truth to me.
Sometimes people can tend to mention things that enhance their own points of view, and this may seem to be one of them, but, hey, if you don?t believe me, go here to this link and check for yourself. It?s all true.