As the world turns an eye toward sustainability, construction must follow suit. But what is sustainable construction, and how does one transition into a more sustainable method of development?
What is Sustainable Construction?
Sustainable construction is the practice of creating a healthy environment that’s based on ecological principles. Sustainable construction focuses on six principles: “conserve, reuse, recycle/renew, protect nature, create non-toxic and high quality.”
The goal is to reduce the industry’s impact on the environment by utilizing sustainable development practices, employing energy efficiency, and taking advantage of green technology.
Although many different business sectors are doing what they can to be more sustainable, the construction sector is unique because it has the chance to significantly affect the way these practices are applied. This is because of the large amounts of materials and energy that the industry uses.
What Are the Different Types of Sustainable Construction?
Construction techniques, resources, and building practices have evolved over the years, and with the increased interest in sustainability and energy conservation, new methods of construction that focus on sustainability have been developed. There are two things that go into sustainable construction: the materials that are used and the methods that are utilized.
One of the best ways to practice sustainability in construction is through the materials that are used. A new generation of stronger, lighter and more sustainable building materials can help solve many problems in the industry as well as push current practices to be more sustainable.
These materials have the added benefit of protecting the environment by reducing the carbon footprint of the buildings that use these materials. They promote a cleaner Earth and a future of sustainability while also being aesthetically appealing and much more efficient.
Sustainable construction isn’t just about using the newest materials; it’s also about using building methods that enhance renewable and sustainable efforts. Some of these methods include:
- Cutting materials precisely in order to reduce waste
- Controlling waste management, such as separating and recycling waste
- Constructing green buildings
- Adaptive reuse projects that transform old buildings
- Managing construction sites to improve the environment
- Examples include treating water on-site, no smoking, recycling food containers, etc.
- Conserving Energy
- Selecting sustainable and recycled materials