Idaho Conservation League, the U.S. Green Building Council – Idaho Chapter and Enerform are happy to invite you to an open house.

Please join us on Friday, January 29th from 5-7 PM at 727 N. Ashtree Way in Boise. Designers will be on hand for tours and questions.


We all use energy in our homes every day, mostly for heating, cooling and lighting. In fact, home energy use accounts for about 25% of all the energy consumed in Idaho. Since Idaho gets more than half our power from coal, meeting this home energy demand contributes to air pollution and climate change. To protect our air ICL promotes better home building practices.

Comfort While Using Less Energy?

What if we could have comfortable homes that don’t demand as much energy?

To learn what is possible today, ICL took a field trip to the lower foothills of Boise to tour the Ashtree Passive House, currently being constructed by local energy efficient builders, Enerform.

Passive house building techniques are a fairly new concept to Boise-and Idaho-but they’re common practice in Europe. The Ashtree house will be the first certified home of its kind in the state, and will use 75% less energy to heat and cool than the  typical  home.

The goal of passive house design is to use super-insulating walls, triple-pane windows, and careful consideration of sunshine to keep  the demand for heating and cooling very low.  By avoiding the sun’s rays in the summer, you need less air conditioning. And by  capturing  the sun’s warmth in the winter, you need less heating. A  ventilation system ensures the air is always fresh. In the end, the house looks traditional, just with thicker walls and more eaves over the windows.

These simple passive house building principles do not cost radically more than  building  a typical home. And by reducing the  demand  for  heating  and cooling, you will have very low monthly bills. This cost-effectiveness is the reason passive house principles are popular for low-income housing.

ICL Promotes Building Strong Homes

To ensure homes are safe, comfortable and efficient, cities and states adopt building codes that home builders must follow. Because the passive house principles ensure solid, efficient homes, ICL promotes the inclusion of these principles in the building codes.

By looking at building this way-efficiency from the ground up-homes like the Ashtree house will save energy today, tomorrow and for future generations.