California House of the Future Takes Green to a Higher Level

Researchers are studying family living in an uber sustainable home that leaves no carbon footprint. Honda Motor Company has established this house of the future in Davis, Calif., to study how humans can live in a nearly sustainable environment. Susan O’Hara and her husband Stuart Bennett, along with their daughters Aisling and Sabha Bennett, both 9, were selected to live in the Honda Smart House for a year. The house uses reclaimed wood for all the trim and furniture, as well as reclaimed nails. Inside, the home feels comfortably cool and spacious with high ceilings, modern design and furnishings. The foundation and polished concrete floors contain pozzolan, which comes from volcanic ash and is used to reduce the amount of Portland cement needed. Making Portland cement requires lots of heat and thus produces a considerable amount of carbon dioxide. The house gets all of its power from the sun, but remains connected to the grid. “We signed up for a year here and we’re really hoping they let us stay on because we don’t think we can go back to a regular house,” says O’Hara, 49, left. The family’s 12-month stay is scheduled to end in October.

View the full feature at the Washington Post.