Clever design elements and solar panels will help create the "Illawarra's first carbon neutral home".
The innovative and environmentally-sustainable concept is the brainchild of Scott Redwood, who was the design and construction manager for the Illawarra Flame house when he was a University of Wollongong student.
The house won first place at the Solar Decathlon China in 2013.
Mr Redwood has now turned his attention to his own home in Mangerton for which he has recently lodged a development application with Wollongong City Council.
The term, carbon neutral, applies to buildings that use renewable energy sources on site to generate energy for their operation, so that over a year the net amount of energy generated on site equals the net amount of energy required by the building.
Mr Redwood said carbon is created during the creation of the building materials, construction of the house, operating the house including heating and cooling, lighting, hot water, gas, power, water, pool/spa heating, and deconstructing the house
"Over the four stages, the carbon required is calculated and added together," he said.
"In my house, I've reduced each stage by carefully considering each type of material and their quantities along with reducing operational energy requirements.
"This refinement of the 'base carbon' to construct the house means I need a 15kW solar system to ensure the house is carbon neutral."
Mr Redwood said his house is expected to emit 1,406 tCO2e (which is tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent) less than an average home achieved through the design elements and solar panel system that creates energy.
That saving is the equivalent of planting to 8,435 trees or removing 370 cars from the road for one year.
The type of material used in the home such as the insulation, the design orientation of the home, and the efficient solar water heating system will mean the house will create more energy than it uses.
"The idea is for the house to produce more energy in its operation than the energy it takes to produce the materials, construct and remove the house," Mr Redwood said.
"People have a perception that sustainable homes need to be small and use as little energy as possible but I'm hoping to show them that you can build a large home, with all the facilities, and it can be carbon neutral.
"Hopefully more people will create carbon neutral houses because the goal is to reduce the carbon output."