How to Reduce the Environmental Footprint of Buildings
Example of a green building, a passive house.
Did you know that the current construction and maintenance of buildings are responsible for large levels of global warming pollution? Statistics show that buildings, both residential and commercial, are accountable for almost 39 percent of total energy consumption and 38 percent of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. Nearly all of the greenhouse gas emissions from the residential and commercial sectors can be attributed to energy use in buildings. Consequently, the built environment is having a vast impact on the natural environment, human health, and the economy. So how can this be curbed?
One way to significantly reduce the levels of pollution from buildings is greenbuilding. Greenbuilding refers to both a structure (i.e. a greenbuilding) and the use of procedures that are environmentally responsible and resource-efficient throughout a building’s lifecycle: from siting to design, construction, operation, maintenance, renovation, and demolition.
History of Greenbuilding, via http://www.reinventinggreenbuilding.com/
How can this be adopted?
Ensuring that your build adopts these greenbuilding practices can be relatively easy and affordable due to the advances in energy efficient products.
For example, to help improve the energy efficiency of buildings, it is now much more affordable to install solar panels, such as the Oventrop range of solar panels, so as to reduce a building’s level of energy consumption using solar energy throughout it’s lifecycle.
Similarly, the use of Gilberts Grilles, Diffusion’s range of Diffusers or Heat Recovery Ventilation systems like The Unico System, can ensure that your building operates with a comfortable airflow without the loss of heat. The installation of these types of products during construction or a renovation can help to significantly reduce a building’s level of energy consumption and CO2 emissions.
Taking small steps like these can make a big difference in ensuring that buildings are more environmentally friendly and energy efficient. In doing so, you’re both saving money and helping the environment.