|What is an "Eco Friendly and/or Green Building?"
"Eco Friendly" is a term used to describe a dwelling that is designed, built, and operated in a manner that achieves the greatest possible energy efficiency, indoor air quality, and resource efficiency.
Some examples include:
- Salvaged materials
to substitute for new materials.
- Recycled content
materials reuse waste products that would otherwise be deposited in
- The use of local
materials supports the local economy and reduces the impacts of
- The use of rapidly
renewable materials and third-party certified wood minimizes the impact
of natural resource consumption to manufacture new building materials.
- The application of
No VOC or Low VOC paints and stains. (Volatile Organic Compounds)
- Alternative energy
sources such as solar panels, wind turbines, and geothermal.
- Using Energy Star
Rated appliances and energy efficient light bulbs to greatly reduce the
amount of energy consumption.
- Passive Solar which
maximizes the Suns energy by the strategic placement of windows.
- The use of
alternative insulation such as recycled denim and soy based foam.
Why Build Eco Friendly and/or Green?
"Eco Friendly or Green" design and building is the opportunity to use our resources more efficiently while creating healthier and more energy-efficient homes.
According to USGBC, U.S. Green Building Council:
In the United States, buildings account for:
Green Building offers many benefits to homeowners and its surrounding environment.
- 39% energy use/ 72%
of electricity consumption
- 38% of greenhouse
gas emissions. (CO2)
- 40% of raw materials
- 30% of waste
output/136 million tons annually
- 14% of potable water
- 25% of wood
- Enhance and protect
ecosystems and biodiversity
- Improve air and
- Reduce solid waste
- Conserve natural
Health and community benefits:
- Reduce operating
- Enhance asset value
- Optimize life-cycle
- Contribute to
overall quality of life
You don't need to build a new home to incorporate Green Building concepts. I've found that even the smallest changes to your existing home can make a difference to improve the energy efficiency and air quality of your home. Here are a few ways to achieve this.
- Improve air quality,
thermal, and acoustic environments
- Enhance occupant
comfort and health
Useful and Informative Green Building Links:
- Replacing old
incandescent light bulbs with more energy efficient (CFL) compact
fluorescent light bulbs.
- Upgrade appliances
with Energy Star rated appliances.
- Replace old aluminum
windows to Energy Star rated dual pane vinyl windows.
- Use No VOC paints or