Zero Per Cent Carbon & 100 Per Cent Stylish

The Norwegians are making leaps in the pursuit of carbon-neutral housing with the construction of the ZEB Multi-Comfort House.

The name may be awkward but the log-cabin-inspired home oozes style while saving the planet. It’s made of stacked wood, recycled bricks and timber and it generates its own power through solar and thermal panels perched on its off-kilter roof.

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Geographically-inclined readers may wonder about the abundance of either sunlight or warmth in icy Norway but the architects believe that over its predicted 60-year lifespan it will generate enough power to offset all the carbon dioxide emitted during its manufacture and construction.

Reminiscent of M.C. Escher the eco-home leans at a 19-degree angle to capture as much of the precious Scandinavian sunlight as possible. That means it can heat its swimming pool, cover its own energy use and charge the requisite electric car of whoever takes up residence.

Rain water is collected, grey water and drain water have their heat recovered and excess warmth inside is used to heat incoming tap water. It was designed by architecture firm Snøhetta for the Research Center on Zero Emission Buildings.

The aim was to produce a carbon-neutral home that retained a sense of homeliness and comfort. Being Norway this meant a sauna was a necessity so a wood-fired one is included, alongside a vege patch and fruit garden. The 200-square-metre house in Larvik will act as a research project to help inform future eco-builds.

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