Buildings around the world are responsible for consuming large quantities of energy, water and electricity. They account for a considerable amount of worldwide emissions responsible for global warming. It is, therefore, absolutely necessary that we adopt new technologies in construction to reduce harmful emissions.
Such emissions may double by 2050 if this is not done. Considering all these aspects, many real estate developers have adopted the concept of green building. It was born out of the concept of sustainable development.
The origins of the concept of sustainable development can be traced back to the 1960s and 1970s. This was the time when concerns were raised with regards to environmental pollution and energy crisis.
The book ‘Silent Spring’ was one of the first efforts to describe sustainable development through green building. It was written by Rachel Carson and was published in 1962. The green building movement was the result of a need for more environment-friendly and energy-efficient practices in construction.
What is a green building?
A green building is a building that creates positive impacts on the earth’s natural environment and climate. It does this through its design, construction, and operation. Green buildings are designed in today’s times to improve our quality of life and preserve natural resources.
There are many features that go into the creation of a green building. One of them is an efficient use of water, energy, and other resources. The building may also use one of the renewable energies, such as solar energy.
Some important measures are taken to reduce pollution and waste through re-use and recycling. Efforts are made to use materials that are sustainable and non-toxic in nature. Such buildings are designed in such a way that they adapt easily to a changing environment.
How can green buildings be created?
There are many ways, in which, green buildings can be created. Generally, it is made possible through willingness to adapt and being conscious of the surrounding environment.
1. Creating structures that are flexible and resilient
Buildings must be constructed in a way that they offer resilience against unforeseen events, such as floods and earthquakes. By anticipating changes in the use of spaces over time, they must be designed to be flexible and dynamic. They must be created in such a way that they can be demolished, rebuilt, or renovated easily.
2. Reducing the need for personal transportation
Diverse environments must be created to ensure quick access to facilities. Options that are environment-friendly, such as walking or cycling must be encouraged.
3. Having an intelligent approach towards energy
The focus must be more on minimizing the use of energy in the building. Renewable and low-carbon technologies must be integrated for catering to the building’s energy requirements.
3. Efficient use of water resources
There must be constant efforts to explore ways to improve the quality of drinking water. Water harvesting, waste water management, and minimizing water usage must be given priority.
4. Reducing waste and increasing reuse
Usage of fewer and more durable things can reduce waste. It is necessary to ensure that the users reduce waste and maximize reuse. The best way to make this possible is to engage them in discussions related to reuse and recycling.
5. Ensuring health and wellbeing of users
Constant efforts must be made to ensure circulation of fresh air indoors. Some of the ways to make this happen is maximum ventilation and avoiding toxic chemicals or materials.
Natural light must be incorporated to enable users to be comfortable and enjoy their natural surroundings. In this process, energy needs can also be reduced to a great extent. Proper sound insulation leads to peace of mind and enhanced concentration.