At the Lake Tunnel Solar Village in Geneva, New York, each home has solar panels, and is so efficient it’s net-zero – meaning it generates as much energy as it uses.

CEO Ryan Wallace of the Solar Home Factory says the houses in the village all sold before his team had even broken ground.

“What was so exciting about that was seeing just a tremendous pent-up enthusiasm,” he says.

So now his team is working to make climate-friendly housing accessible to more people – including renters. Their next development will include 72 net-zero apartments. And Wallace hopes to build more.

He says for net-zero buildings to appeal to housing authorities and municipalities, costs need to stay low.

So his team is producing them in a factory with less labor and material waste. And next year they plan to scale up the factory so that they can build thousands of affordable net-zero units each year.

“The thing about sustainable housing is it’s not just a badge of pride. It really means that it costs less to live,” Wallace says. “And so if you can put that amazing value in the hands of people who could use it the most, you can have some of the most significant impact in our society.”

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Reporting credit: ChavoBart Digital Media