It’s no secret: building a house makes a fair bit of mess and waste. Material cut-offs, packaging, energy use and transportation of goods all add up to create a hefty carbon footprint. Because of this, many businesses are looking for ‘greener’ ways of doing things.
More sustainable building practices create and use healthier and more resource-efficient ways of construction – and demolishing – buildings.
These are some of the things that can be done to minimise the environmental impact that is traditionally associated with building.
By creating a home that is energy efficient (uses minimal energy to heat and cool), you minimise the home’s long-term carbon footprint. This can be done with insulation and clever positioning of windows and vents to adjust the light and heat in the home.
Waste reduction is an important feature in choosing materials. Some materials are wrapped in plastic or other non-environmentally friendly packaging. By minimising the use of these materials, the consumer is telling producers they expect better solutions. Recycling packaging and unused materials instead of sending them to landfill is also advised.
Installation and use of a secure skip bin at the build site cuts down on materials and debris blowing into the surrounding environment. This can be hazardous for the environment and creates friction from future neighbours if they are having to deal with your project’s rubbish. Ensure that all waste is dealt with appropriately.
Reducing the use of toxins in building supplies is another way to better a home’s environment. Some materials are known to leach toxic fumes and have a harmful effect. By developing new products without harmful toxins, we eliminate the negative effects associated with them.
Water efficiency is also an important thing to consider during any new build. By using water-reducing fixtures and installing a rainwater catchment tank, you can safeguard water resources.
With so many ways to create a greener home, and a greener building construction project, it makes sense to consider these concepts at the beginning of your build. Have a discussion with your builder about what steps they are taking to ensure the build site is as environmentally friendly as it can be and trust that you are doing your bit for the planet.