Isbrand Funk is promoting the “passive house” concept locally. It’s a European standard that aims to reduce energy use through design techniques. A passive house has more insulation and uses heat from the sun and other low-impact sources, such as warmth produced by cooking and occupants’ bodies. It doesn’t rely on mechanical systems like a furnace.
During the 2010 Winter Games, a 3,000-square-foot passive house served as the Whistler base of the Austrian Olympic team.
“A passive house means that you should not need really any active energy to heat or cool your house,” Funk told the Straight by phone.
These homes also mean good business for the Delta entrepreneur. Funk is the president and CEO of EuroLine Windows Inc., a company that produces windows and doors that exceed minimum North American standards.
Contractor Rob Bernhardt is building a demonstration project in Saanich, which he said will be the first passive house on Vancouver Island.
“The basic concept is you invest a little bit more in the design and the building envelope, the insulation, and the quality of the windows,” Bernhardt told the Straight by phone. He will attend a one-day forum on energy-efficient homes on Thursday (November 1) at the Delta Town and Country Inn starting at 8:30 a.m.