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5 Trends In Green Construction or Green Building
A 2016 report called “World Green Building Trends" revealed the latest trends in environmentally sound, people-focused construction and building.
1. Energy Net-Positive Homes
The gold-standard for green homes in terms of energy production versus consumption used to be what's known as "Zero Energy". This means that the building produces whatever energy it needs to function, thereby consuming "zero energy" from other sources. Today, however, that paradigm has been replaced by an even more noble and daunting objective: "Positive Energy" buildings, meaning they produce even more energy than they utilize.
Net-positive energy homes use solar power to create more energy than the home consumes. Excess power is then either used to power additional electrical items, like hot tubs, electric cars, or yard tools, or sold back to the public energy grid.
2. Water Preservation & Reclamation
As many states around the U.S. experience repeated, enduring droughts that decimate land and livelihoods, conservation and more efficient water usage methods gain increasing urgency. Among the techniques and technologies being employed to address this growing need, include:
- drought resistant landscaping
- efficient irrigation technologies
- greywater reuse
- rainwater harvesting
- water conservation fixtures
A new innovation called Xeriscaping has also turned yards drought-resistant. By starting with drought-resistant plants planted in the right soil in areas with limited or no grass, Xeriscaping uses drip irrigation systems to combine effective landscaping with efficient water conservation. The result is yards that are both beautiful and drought-resistant.
3. Health-Conscious Workplaces
More and more businesses are employing green building techniques to create workplaces more supportive of their workers' health and well-being. Vertical gardens and rooftop sky gardens provide aesthetically-pleasing, oxygen-rich spaces for breaks while producing healthy whole foods that can be served in the employee cafeteria.
Building designs that encourage people to take the stairs rather than the elevator are also becoming increasingly popular in offices where employees traditionally spend many hours at a desk.
Ample energy-efficient windows and lighting are also staples of health-conscious workplaces, as are sufficient air circulation and climate controls.
Nanotechnology is being used to create insulation and paints that are non-toxic and more efficient than their traditional counterparts. According to the report, nano insulation is 30% more efficient than standard insulation. As an alternative to traditional paints, nanocoatings are self-cleaning, and they clean the air by removing air pollutants and then breaking down those toxins.
Nanotech solar technologies, meanwhile, now allow windows and awnings, instead of just rooftops, to incorporate solar cells.
5. Tiny Houses
More and more people are occupying less and less space, with a growing trend in shrinking floor plans. One of the most effective ways to minimize one's environmental impact is certainly to occupy less space, thereby consuming fewer precious resources.
Tiny homes take fewer resources to build and fewer resources to maintain. That's why so many people are switching to tiny houses to reduce their carbon footprint. Advancements in green building techniques have made tiny homes "smarter" and more energy-efficient than ever before. Using recycled materials, smart technologies, and creative storage solutions, tiny houses are currently being built into miniature green mansions.
In fact, all the trends mentioned in this article--net-positive energy construction, water preservation and reclamation, health-conscious spaces, and nanotechnology--can be incorporated into tiny homes to increase their sustainability.
Jessica Kane is a professional blogger who writes for Econoheat., the world’s #1 leading waste oil heaters manufacturer.
Contact Green Project Marketing
To discuss how your company and project can benefit from our services as well if there are representation opportunities, please contact Michel (Michael) Stevens, President, at (800) 260-6008 ext. 301 PST or mstevens[at]greenprojectmarketing[dot]com. Skype ID: GreenProjMktg.