Greetings from Hannover–Day 1!

That's Hannover from above.

Mike Kernagis and I are in Germany for the 16th annual European Passivhaus Conference. This is the second time that we’ve made conference here in Hannover, the first being in 2006. It’s great for me, because I grew up just outside of town in small Großburgwedel, where my family still lives. It’s terrific to be here at conference and to see so many of the dear friends we’ve made. It’s also intensely gratifying to receive so much support for PHIUS, from long-time Passivhausers as well as from newer advocates, for both the work we have done and for our current initiatives.

Here at the end of the first of the two-day program, I’ve found the plenary presentation by the very famous physicist Ernst Ulrich von Weizsacher to be the most interesting. Ernst wrote the terrific Factor Five {subtitle: “Transforming the Global Economy through 80% Improvements in Resource Productivity”) and he talked about how profitable green technologies can break the impasse at climate talks. Pretty cool.

The exhibition hall is first-rate and, though most exhibitors are familiar to those here, Europe is still head-and shoulders above the United States in terms of developing (and selling) components and products for advanced building design and construction. But I think we are making headway at home as well.

Looking forward to Saturday’s sessions with presenters sharing and developing PH know-how. More later.

Now, it’s Spargeltime!