When you consider green building, you probably think of buildings which use renewable energy sources, or energy-efficient materials and systems which allow less waste, fewer emissions, and greater efficiency and longevity. But there are many other benefits to building green – such as energy costs, the reduction of air pollution and carbon dioxide emissions, reduced dependence on foreign oil, and the ability to provide local communities with jobs as well as a cleaner environment and sustainable communities. And these are just a few.
To get a clearer picture of what green building is all about, you need to understand the different ways in which buildings can be designed to be more energy efficient, more environmentally friendly, and more cost effective. Green building refers to the application and design of environmentally conscious processes and practices during the life-cycle of a building: from conception to construction, design, operation, repair, renovations, and demolition.
A green building can be defined as any new building constructed that utilizes sustainable materials and techniques and has a sustainable design. The key is in the sustainable design and construction process. Some green building practices include building in a manner which allows for passive heating and cooling and making maximum use of natural light and ventilation. Other sustainable practices involve using low-emission sources of energy like geothermal power, using materials that do not create waste and building in an ecologically appropriate manner. There are also practices to reduce or eliminate emissions.
The first step in implementing green buildings is to plan them in advance and carefully evaluate the existing building, its surroundings, and its future needs before designing the new building. Green construction involves analyzing the structure and its surroundings to determine the best possible way to use the space and the best materials and techniques to reduce the amount of energy required to sustain the building. This will then be used in the design.
In addition to planning for energy efficiency, sustainable architecture considers issues like reducing noise and light emissions, reducing or eliminating energy wastes, and increasing insulation. These things help the building to last longer. In addition, the building should be able to withstand weather changes so that it will remain functional and usable for many years to come.
Another factor to consider when planning a new building is to minimize its impact on the surrounding environment. By using energy efficient building materials and techniques, this is done by avoiding the use of energy-intensive materials and employing low energy methods such as windows and doors. For instance, by using the lowest energy resistant types of windows and doors and double-glazed windows, the building will help to conserve energy and minimize waste.
Another practice to reduce energy use and create a better building is to employ renewable energy sources. Energy efficient heating and cooling systems can save money and reduce energy consumption. These include efficient air-conditioning systems and efficient plumbing systems. Some renewable sources include wind power, solar power, geothermal, or water-powered heating and cooling systems, and energy efficient appliances.
Lastly, green construction involves using natural lighting and ventilation to improve the safety and maintenance of a new building. Lighting systems use low energy LED, fluorescent, or low-voltage lighting. Additionally, windows and doors can be made using energy efficient windows and doors.
The type of building that you choose depends on the overall theme and function of the building. For example, a restaurant, educational facility, or other business may require a much larger building. Commercial building, on the other hand, usually have much smaller spaces and are meant for businesses that only need a small office. The type of building that you choose depends on your business needs.
Lastly, energy efficient building materials and practices should be considered before any construction begins. These practices can include using renewable and recyclable materials like wood, glass, metal, and plastic. They also can include energy saving techniques like energy efficient lighting, and ventilation, and using insulation to reduce heat loss and cooling costs.
As you can see, there are many green building practices and green building materials. The key is to consider what the building will be for, how it will be used, and which practices are most suitable to your particular location and needs.