7 Green Building Components to Make Your Building Eco-Friendly

Are you looking for custom home builders in San Diego dealing with green buildings? Well, House to Home is your best fit. We construct green buildings, contributing to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals

The buildings help conserve the environment, facilitate innovation, and help keep costs low. This article will highlight components of green buildings, benefits, and others. So, let’s get into it.

What is a green building?

A Green building is a building with a design and construction that mitigates carbon footprint. In fact, it creates a positive impact on our environment and climate. They preserve natural resources and often use recyclable materials for their components. Green buildings can be offices, homes, schools, hospitals, etc. In short, any building can be green. 

However, they might vary depending on the country and climatic conditions. For example, a green building in Iceland differs from one in Singapore. Economic, cultural, and social factors also affect the type of green buildings in specific areas.

7 Green Building Components

Sustainable site planning

Conventional construction does little to conserve the environment when electing a building. Builders destroy the soil, cut down trees, and destroy habitats for insects and birds. Besides, they can ruin the macroclimate of an area, depending on how big the construction project is. And this is what green building seeks to address. It allows builders to construct structures that blend with the environment. It will enable you to choose a location with minimal impact on natural resources. The WBDG recommends building structures that prevent water runoff and sustain native flora and fauna. Green buildings also positively impact the local community by providing sustainable transportation routes.

Sustainable site planning

Conventional construction does little to conserve the environment when electing a building. Builders destroy the soil, cut down trees, and destroy habitats for insects and birds. Besides, they can ruin the macroclimate of an area, depending on how big the construction project is. And this is what green building seeks to address.

It allows builders to construct structures that blend with the environment. It will enable you to choose a location with minimal impact on natural resources. The WBDG recommends building structures that prevent water runoff and sustain native flora and fauna. Green buildings also positively impact the local community by providing sustainable transportation routes. 

Energy optimization

Until a decade ago, there was little to no consideration of energy sources. Commercial buildings would use unsustainable means such as diesel-powered generators for their energy needs. In fact, most industry players frowned upon green energy. 

A green building allows you to use sustainable energy sources to heat and cool your buildings. Like House to Home, custom builders in San Diego can install such sources. They include:

  • Solar: It uses photovoltaic panels to convert ultraviolet rays into energy. And thanks to solar batteries, you can store energy and use it during winter.

  • Hydropower: It is one of the oldest sources of green energy. It uses water movement to turn turbines, generating power.

  • Wind power: Wind power has gained traction in the recent decade. It harnesses wind movement to produce energy.

  • Geothermal: It harnesses heat from the earth’s crust, which heats water to produce steam. The steam drives large motors to produce sustainable energy. 

  • Bioenergy: As the name suggests, it utilizes biodegradable materials, including animal and plant waste, to produce energy. It is also used in the automotive industry to power cars. 

Using these sources of energy can make your building more eco-friendly. 

Water conservation

Fresh water is becoming a scarce resource around the globe. With millions facing water shortages, most countries are turning to seawater desalination. However, this technology is not accessible to all people. As such, utilizing these methods to conserve water is a sure way to make buildings sustainable.

Some of the ways you can champion water conservation in your building include:

  • Turning off taps when not in use.
  • Fixing water leaks.
  • Using a drip irrigation system to water flowers and other plants in the building.
  • Recycle water for cleaning purposes.
  • Use water-saving devices such as low-flow shower heads and ultra-low flush toilets.
  • Using water softeners to tackle hard water challenges. 

Use of sustainable materials

Green build materials have gained traction over the last decade. They are less toxic, cheap, and help conserve the environment. Besides, you can use recycled materials for wall partitioning and other structures. Using green materials also helps improve indoor air quality since they do not produce toxic gases.

Some of the most popular green-building materials in San Diego include:

  • Earthen materials: They include rammed earth, cob, and adobe. Builders add grass, chopped straw, and other fibrous materials for durable buildings.

  • Engineered wood:  It includes several layers of waste wood. It is ideal for doors, boards, and walls.

  • Bamboo: If you are looking for stellar aesthetics, consider using bamboo. It is also durable and compatible with different climatic conditions.

  • Structural insulated panels (SIPs): It contains two flake boards with a foam layer between them. They are mainly used to construct walls, thanks to their stellar insulation.

  • Cordwood: If wood is abundant, consider using cordwood. Short and round pieces are placed on top of each other and bonded with a unique mortar mixture.

  •  Natural fiber: This is mainly used for insulating buildings. Builders use recycled wool or cotton fibers to create batts installed in wooden frames. 

Other green materials include fiberglass, cellulose, cork, natural clay, etc. 

Indoor air quality

The quality of indoor air affects the health of building occupants. It can therefore influence comfort and productivity. To ensure healthy indoors, you can provide ample ventilation and daylight. Avoid using toxic building materials such as cadmium, silica, and asbestos. 

Common ways to improve indoor air quality include:

  • Changing the building’s AC filters.
  • Cleaning air ducts to avoid contaminating indoor air.
  • Using cooking vents in the kitchen.
  • Cleaning carpets and rugs.
  • Controlling humidity in your building.
  • Adding indoor plants to freshen the air. 

Recycling waste

Recycle construction and indoor waste to cut costs and make your building eco-friendly. Besides, you can develop a design that will see minimal waste. Some of the ways you can recycle construction materials are:

  • Using waste to construct new structures such as pavers.
  • Taking construction waste to your local recycling center. 
  • Deconstruct buildings instead of demolishing them, reducing waste significantly.

You can also recycle in-house waste from day-to-day operations. For example, you can recycle water from sinks and use it for cleaning floors and vehicles. Other ways to recycle waste include:

  • Installing recycling bins 
  • Recycling empty toner and ink cartridges.
  • Recycling print and paper.
  • Recycling outdated technology.
  • Buying remanufactured toner and ink cartridges.

Community

Your San Diego building should also serve to improve the state of the immediate community. For example, it should provide areas where people can hold meetings. You should also ensure there are outdoor areas where kids can play. Provide pavers for pedestrians, which help reduce pollution from cars. 

Benefits of green building

Green buildings in San Diego have many benefits, which can be categorized as economic, environmental, and social. They include:

Economic

Green buildings offer several economic benefits to a wide range of people. These include lower rent prices, higher property value, and increased occupancy rates. They also create jobs improving the standard of living for the immediate community.

Building owners report that sustainable buildings have a higher value than conventional buildings. It is thanks to improved comfort, better indoor air quality, and reduced wastage.
At a country level, they help add hundreds of jobs and champion innovation in the construction industry. They also reduce energy use, saving the country billions of dollars.

Social

Custom home builders in San Diego who construct green buildings help improve the social fabric of communities. These benefits are primarily around the well-being and health of the building’s occupants. 

People working in sustainable buildings record better cognitive scores than traditional constructions. It leads to improved productivity, hence increased revenue. Occupants also have a better sleep thanks to exposure to daylight. And with reduced toxic levels, occupants are less susceptible to respiratory illnesses. 

Environmental

The chief benefit of green buildings is conserving the environment. As you know, there’s rampant climate change thanks to our unsustainable ways of living. One way to address this is to construct green buildings.

They conserve the environment by using less natural resources, energy, and water. Most buildings will generate their power or use sustainable sources. Some of the benefits to the environment include:

  • Reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Reducing water and energy wastage.
  • Consuming less energy than traditional buildings, hence decreasing global warming. 
  • Conserving native flora and fauna.

As you can see, green buildings benefit the owner, the environment, and the immediate community. If you want a green building, consider contacting custom home builders in San Diego.