How can we define a green building? A common view is, that it should be designed to reduce the impact of the built environment on the natural environment and human health. This can be achieved by efficient use of energy, water and natural materials, and also waste and pollution reduction.
Do you know how much of the total energy consumed in the US and EU is used by buildings? It is about 40 %! Therefore reductions in this area may be crucial for future sustainability. And while environmental impact of residential and commercial buildings is underestimated, the perceived costs of green buildings are overestimated.
Green building technologies and materials
Green buildings integrate advantages of renewable resources, green renewable materials, efficient building envelope and waste reduction.
The most common renewable resources used in green buildings are passive and active solar techniques, wind power, hydro power, or biomass.
Also, it is crucial to increase the efficiency of the barrier between conditioned and unconditioned space. This barrier can by active or passive. In simple words, the passive barrier means classic insulation using high-efficiency windows and insulation in walls, ceilings, and floors. Active barriers are usually using solar and geothermal energy stored in the storage reservoirs. This energy is used to control the temperature in the external walls, thus creating a climate barrier to eliminate heat flow.
The aim of green building architecture is to reduce waste of water, materials and energy. Not only while operating the house but also during its construction.