Future Of Green Architecture For Sustainability


Green building rating systems are facing increased competition with the rise of net-zero buildings and a sharper focus on existing structures to drive sustainability. Green architecture is an approach that focuses on the construction of sustainable buildings that are structurally eco-friendly and employs processes that are environment-friendly and resource efficient throughout the building’s lifecycle from the site, construction, material, operation, maintenance, renovation and demolition. With the passage of time government agencies, property developers, real estate managers and universities realize the need for green designs and measures to be incorporated into buildings and facilities.

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Green architecture can never fade away as it revolves around crucial aspects of energy efficiency, zero net energy, cloud-based energy management, energy performance disclosure and solar power. Green architecture lays emphasis on a growing understanding of the need for energy efficient buildings and their direct influence on global climate change. Energy efficiency will also help control operational costs and maintenance. Big cities and their fast growth have led to more environment-friendly considerations in the field of architecture. Chennai is a metropolitan city faced with severe problems of pollution and with an increasing demand for green architecture.

rooftop-gardens-grass-roof-green-building-architectureHigh-end universities, corporate real estate and large office buildings and residential apartments are opting for green buildings. Municipal, university, school and hospital (MUSH) market projects with cheap capital have encouraged green buildings with energy savings for upgraded or modernized physical plants. Green buildings need the launch of a rating system to identify key performance indicators.

Zero net energy buildings

Zero net energy buildings are designed such that there is zero net energy consumption and the annual energy consumption of the building is equal to the amount of renewable energy created on-site or elsewhere. At times they do consume nonrenewable energy and produce greenhouse gasses but all in all, reduce energy consumption and greenhouse gas production. The competition among the green building rating systems is expected to grow in the coming years. There are systems already in place for the rating of retail or office interiors based on green architecture. The rating systems will most probably be country specific rating systems.

Green building now is not restricted to new building projects alone, its ideas are even being extended to existing buildings. Cloud computing has increased the management of buildings using software platforms for monitoring of performance, visualization, data analytics, visualization, diagnostics and fault detection. Cloud computing is also used for portfolio energy management. This enables greater facility management, building automation and services, and wireless controls. These services have also extended to cheap sensors, energy dashboards and greater demand for energy efficient upgrades for reducing energy usage and energy costs.

Energy efficiency disclosure

States and cities will begin to demand building performance disclosure to cut carbon emissions. It will be an effective step to incorporate values of openness and transparency to deal with concerns over climate change. An emphasis on cutting carbon emissions will pressurize owners to seek energy efficient alternatives and renovations. As of now the energy performance certificate remains a relative scale and does not fully disclose actual performance. Buildings may even opt for Display energy certificates which are lesser known.

Eco-friendly, nontoxic building materials

There is a constant debate over healthy building materials increasing the value of environmental product declarations and health product declarations so as to keep a check on toxic chemicals by designers and builders in construction. Builders and construction material manufacturers will try hard to compete in the market with environmentally safe building materials. One can even foresee developments in the industry developed disclosure systems and the rise of independent rating organizations. There is also a possible chance for the confusion regarding the choice of conventional building materials over building materials that claim to be healthier.

Solar power

The focus being highly directed towards renewable sources of energy, solar power has gained a lot of attention. Solar power incorporation into buildings will continue to grow in an effort to implement renewable portfolio standards and shifting constructions to zero net energy buildings. There will be schemes in place that will pay building owners for any surplus electricity produced that may be at par with the rate of power purchased from the utility. Google’s new Project Sunroof will help builders assess whether covering a rooftop with solar power tapping systems will result in energy cost savings by helping analyze with the help of 3D models from Google Maps to understand historical weather data and utility prices.

The thing about solar power is that the photovoltaic panels on the roof are easily visible to customers, clients, employees and potential buyers that ensure them that the firm or organization is committed to renewable energy and cost efficiency. Solar power is currently the most happening in the power sector and is sure to revolutionize radically the design and structure of buildings in the near future.

Water conservation

The world over has been made aware of the crisis in fresh water supply. Many parts of the world already suffer from a shortage of fresh water due to climatic changes that affect rainfall and water supply. Water being as essential as air, its crisis has heightened concerns about its impact. Builders, designers and owners seek to reduce water consumption and employ rainwater harvesting, water conserving fixtures and water treatment plants to reduce water usage. People have actively turned to planting native and adapted vegetation to improve the environment and surroundings.

There is a multi-channel approach to creating energy efficient and eco-friendly buildings and surroundings employing renewable energy and overall maintenance of the healthy living environment.

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