ecotecture.GIF (12664 bytes)
Department of   Design and Environmental Analysis,
Cornell University
  1. External Considerations

  2. Core & Envelope

  3. Indoor Ecology

  4. Material/Product Content

  5. Ecotecture Worksheets

  6. Additional  information.

  7. Case Studies

Use the table of contents to go directly to specific topics:




 The indoor ecology of a facility incorporates three main components: HVAC systems, Lighting, and Indoor Air Quality.      

HVAC systems are responsible for one third of the energy costs for a facility.  At the present time, fossil fuels are readily available and inexpensive in the United States, allowing heating and cooling systems to be often both oversized and overused.  Fossil fuel use should be minimized as much as possible, and if one must be used, all attempts should be made to identify the one which is the least damaging to the natural environment, and most efficient. All attempts should be made to identify renewable resources, such as sun and wind, which can be used as a source of energy for the facility. 

The lighting of facilities is responsible for over twenty percent of electricity consumption in the United States.  It is also the easiest place to make the biggest impact on cutting electricity consumption.  Opportunities for natural lighting should be incorporated wherever possible as it will increase the quality of the indoor environment and reduce lighting loads. 

According to a study conducted by the EPA, "Poor indoor air quality costs tens of billions of dollars each year in productivity losses, employee sick leave and medical costs."  Workspace area, temperature, and air movement are the most common complaints among office workers. 










Cornell University, December, 1998