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Buildings Come in All Shades of Green

Buildings Come in All Shades of Green

After the long winter and a disappointing spring, MBF Blogs looks forward to a good summer with those of you minded to make your house more green or even build your own eco-viable dwelling, well catered for.

What would the perfect green house look like?

Green technology, while still evolving, now encompasses everything from materials developed through advanced technology, generating power to non-toxic cleaning products.

According to Green Technology the goals that inform development in this rapidly growing field include:

  • Sustainability – meeting the needs of society in ways that can continue indefinitely into the future without damaging or depleting natural resources. In short, meeting present needs without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.
  • ‘Cradle to cradle design – ending the ‘cradle to grave’ cycle of manufactured products, by creating products that can be fully reclaimed or re-used.
  • Source reduction – reducing waste and pollution by changing patterns of production and consumption.
  • Innovation – developing alternatives to technologies – whether fossil fuel or chemical intensive agriculture – that have been demonstrated to damage health and the environment.
  • Viability – creating a centre of economic activity around technologies and products that benefit the environment, speeding their implementation and creating new careers that truly protect the planet.

The Appliance of Green Science

For most observers and active participants in greening, science can lead the way, coupled with relentless technological progress:

  • Energy: 
Perhaps the most urgent issue for green technology, this includes the development of alternative fuels, new means of generating energy and energy efficiency.
  • Green building: 
Green building encompasses everything from the choice of building materials to where a building is located.
  • Environmentally preferred purchasing
: This government innovation involves the search for products whose contents and methods of production have the smallest possible impact on the environment, and mandates that these be the preferred products for government purchasing.
  • Green chemistry
: The invention, design and application of chemical products and processes to reduce or to eliminate the use and generation of hazardous substances.
  • Green nanotechnology: 
Nanotechnology involves the manipulation of materials at the scale of the nanometer, one billionth of a meter. Some scientists believe that mastery of this subject is forthcoming that will transform the way that everything in the world is manufactured. “Green nanotechnology” is the application of green chemistry and green engineering principles to this field.

What will future, green-perfect buildings look like?

Huffington Post has produced some startling images to whet our appetites.

They argued that ‘as architects continue to envision the utopian cities of the future, one thing is certain: innovation means sustainability.’ Architects and designers are relentlessly pursuing design strategies that manage to mitigate the toxic byproducts of our consumption habits, while maximizing our use of sustainable energy sources.

They said that meeting these challenges means ‘more deeply integrating green technologies like wind and solar power, natural climate controls and space-age materials in to the building processes.’

Urging you to see their ‘pretty mind-blowing’ pictures of the /most disruptive designs in the green building space’, they point out sustainability and aesthetic innovation.

Eco-Houses Big Business

If you list all the things that interconnect in a new green eco-home (or even retrofitting an old house), it is green technology business second only to device manufacture:

  • insulation – eg loft or cavity wall insulation
  • heating
  • draught-proofing
  • double glazing
  • renewable energy technologies – eg solar panels or wind turbines
  • recycling
  • new materials using new technology and often old designs
  • efficient use of water and other resources
  • energy friendly appliances
  • smarts meters and smart technology
  • any more?

It is a possibility that in twenty years, more people will be employed in these industries than anything else. Who says the future isn’t green?

Other links:

Government’s Green Deal

What If the Cloud Was a Country, How Green Would It Be?, 20 February 2013

No Green Credentials for Computer Scammers and Internet Pirates, 23 January 2013

Have Yourself a Merry, Green Christmas If You Can, 25 December 2012

Do Emails Cost the Earth? 20 July 2011

Image: Maclemo