The building industry is filled with terminology describing types of construction, but none resonates like sustainable or green construction, sometimes a term often misunderstood. Sustainability is a subject taken very seriously worldwide. In fact, the sustainable construction (green) sector is slated to contribute 3.3 million jobs in the U.S. by 2018. The concept embraces the social, economic, and environmental impact on generations to come and the preservation and efficient use of resources to continue stable growth. Here are three major factors in sustainable construction:
Ultimately, the goal of sustainable construction is to minimize a structures impact on the environment by considering the design, the location, the plan for use, and how it is maintained. The design should also include how it will be decommissioned or demolished if the building is no longer needed.
First, choosing green materials is an important part of sustainable construction. Materials from renewable resources, as well as, recycled or repurposed items are selected. Supporting the area’s biodiversity is critical in preserving wildlife and renewing resources used in the project. Using materials available locally saves money by reducing energy and pollution generated by avoiding delivery of materials by truck, train, or even boat.
The best way for a building to be both economically and environmentally sustainable is to also be energy efficient. The structure design should include options to supply clean energy that will generate enough to power to operate efficiently. In some cases, solar panels and wind power can generate enough power for a surplus that can be stored and sold back to the utility company.
Sustainable construction means countless layers of questions and decisions with research and answers somewhere outside the ‘preverbal’ box. Do you want to gain a better understanding of sustainable construction? Visit Blue Moon Rising to continue the discussion or see sustainable construction up close and personal on a personalized tour!