One-third of energy consumed in United States is from buildings. Almost 60 percent of it goes for cooling and heating. And of course, there are more energy consumption and costs on manufacturing and transportation of the building materials. An average cost for the majority of homeowners is about $5,000 on buying a HVAC system. Think about this, does this high performance cooling and heating system work for free after we spend five thousand dollar? Or it actually costs more if we turn it on.
We all know and want energy to be saved in order to save the world from crisis, but we still need it for survival. So, renewable energy and clean energy development have been noticed and put into experiments for a while. However, I do think we should study where we were in the past, when we lived without this expensive system. In my own experience, my house my country does not have the same HVAC system; basically, we open windows for ventilation; and we place windows on the south side of the house to get more sunlight in the daytime, with also drying clothes. When it is winter, in order to keep warm, unfortunately, we just keep our clothes on. However, geothermal heating, for example, is used in many regions in the world to heat the buildings on the ground. It is a new way to apply the natural resource in architecture. For instance, in Oita Prefecture Japan, the government supports the development of producing renewable energy locally there since there are plenty of hot springs. Local hotels and public houses are enjoying this benefit from local energy production. Compared it to solar and wind power, geothermal energy will not be affected by weather conditions, which best fits for housing program. Unfortunately, the limitation is that geothermal heating is required by geologic locations.
Materials are not just formed and manufactured practical things putting on buildings; they are more than we understand them. In physics, everything in the world can explained that every movement or every product is one form of energy transferring and flowing into one another. So, in that way, if we think everything is a form of energy, we actually can have a deeper understanding of the materials we are using and producing. Just like the geothermal heating in Japan, renewable energy can be explored further in architecture.