Construction, remodeling, and refurbishing are activities that will always have a small or big impact on the surroundings. This is what we call environmental impact. If there is a new construction, there will always be a terrain to work on, machinery to bring in, fuel expenses, noise pollution, debris, etc. We can call it the price of modernism.
However, construction companies have found ways to be more energy efficient. They use less energy with the same results by using more eco-friendly alternatives. The impact they generate to the environment is reduced by applying simple measures. Today we will discuss how to build or remodel with a small environmental impact. In other words, we will talk about green building or sustainable buildings.
Reducing the Impact
There is a huge share of energy being delivered towards construction. We are talking about energy, water, electricity, and materials. Given the large amounts of resources being used, the building sector has an enormous potential for the reduction of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere at little or no cost.
The construction sector contributes with about 9 billion tons of CO2 emissions annually. This amount could double by 2050 if measures are not taken, according to the United Nations Environment Programme. According to an estimation done by the International Energy Agency, buildings are the largest consuming sector and account for over one-third of annual energy consumption.
Probably the greatest controversy over sustainable buildings is the price. Greener options such as photovoltaic cells and other modern technologies tend to cost more money. Real estate building agencies tend to give more importance to the upfront costs and not so much to life-cycle costs.
It is understood then, the more elevated costs of green building will be recovered with a reduced electricity bill, for instance. Besides this, a greener building has a lower environmental impact on its surroundings, creating a healthier environment around neighbors.
There also seems to be a connection between green facilities and work productivity. The correlation between a greener building and work productivity has to do with a better work environment. This is enabled when workers are positively impacted by green aspects such as better ventilation systems, use of non-toxic materials, reduction of pollutants, and improved lighting.
The goal of a sustainable building program should aim towards water, energy, and material efficiency.
Some ways of producing energy-efficient homes or buildings include high-performance windows and extra insulation in walls, floors, and ceilings. In the case of houses, passive solar building is implemented. Builders orient windows, walls, porches, and trees to maximize shade during summer and to keep warmth during winter.
The strategy applied for water efficiency has to do with reusing water being used on the site. In other words, building sites should increase their dependence on water that is collected for reuse.
When it comes to materials, the best option is to acquire lumber from certified forests that are self-sustainable. Also, the use of rapidly renewable materials such as bamboo and straw as well as non-toxic materials.
Constructing green buildings and homes is a priority to sustainable development. If your home is not green yet, there are practical ways in which you can. When you decide to put it out in the market, don´t forget to hire the best real estate photography Calgary to get the best of your listings.