I attended this years solar decathlon held in Washington, DC, and found it to be an awesome display of ingenuity and future potential. I also found a few areas of the competition that don’t exactly make sense.
The purpose of the competition is to encourage students to design houses with the latest technology, however since it is partly funded by the U.S. Department of Energy, the competition focus’s on the latest solar technology and energy saving methods. This is great but the competition should be about building houses of the future with all the environment impacts taken into account, not just those revolving around energy. There is a well known non-profit based in Washington, DC by the name of the U.S. Green Building Council, that seems to have been left out of the competition. One would think that they would be heavily involved, encouraging these up and coming architects and engineers to design for sustainable futures through the implementation of the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification process. It could easily implemented as part of the competition with points awarded for scoring the highest in the LEED rating system.