Over the next 20 years, the planet will have reached its peak capacity for oil consumption. When it comes to the construction industry, as the production of all oil decreases and the consumption of oil increases, the industry and its practices still require crude oil.
To use within their machinery, construction industries throughout the Western world depend upon cheap crude oils to use within their manufacturing and constructive processes. Within the UK alone, construction accounts for 50% of the carbon emissions that are produced by various machines from the start of a job until its end.
Construction firms are now beginning to realise the dangers and the threats posed by pollution within the industry, and therefore the industry is beginning to change their attitudes towards the consumption of crude oils. By passing legislation, the government now stipulates that firms should utilise green energy practices by utilising eco-friendly technologies. As well as this, eco-friendly firms in the US saw estimated revenues reach $245 billion last year – sighting a change in the perceived attitudes of eco-friendly construction and how it is set to change the industry in the future.
Eco-friendly construction techniques
There are many things to consider when building a proposed structure.However, if it is to be eco-friendly, there are some main concerns to consider during the design and implementation of construction.
To begin, are materials locally sourced and are they renewable? If so, do they have the opportunity to be recycled in the future?
Furthermore, during the construction of the proposed structure, is energy being wasted? For example, are machines being overworked or overused? This leads to expendable energy being wasted, and therefore more crude oil is required in the form of diesel to fuel engines. Nifty Lift boom lifts, on the other hand, are designed with hybrid motor technologies that provide an environmentally conscious construction technique, ensuring no expendable energy is wasted onsite. While the electrical engine is engaged, no emissions are produced if only the electric engine is turned on – and it can run alongside a diesel engine so that it is never overworked if more power is needed.
What is also important to consider is that once a building has been constructed, is energy being wasted within the structure itself?
In the construction of roofing, for example, rather than using purpose-built insulation – recycled paper can be used as an alternative cost-effective material. Locally sourced timbers should also be used from sustainably managed forests, and if this isn’t possible, attempt to use reclaimed wood rather than chopping down a tree within the process of construction.
Construction with eco-friendly designs in mind
Energy-efficient and eco-friendly construction techniques can be used within any job, and here are just a couple of the many examples that can be used:
Solar energy panels: These panels can be used either for generating electricity within the building, or can be used domestically to power boilers and generate hot water within a property.
Drainage systems and water filtration: These systems help to re-use water within the building’s design, while biological waste can be treated and re-used safely. Drains can also be manufactured that lead to gardens – so that no water is ever wasted and it always has a purpose. This water can be used for plants, avoiding the need to use water from a tap.
Benefitting from eco-friendly construction
Accounting for 80% of a building’s total running costs over its lifetime, operation and maintenance account for a vast proportion of overall costs. If a structure was to benefit from using green energy initiatives, operating costs could be diminished by over a third in regards to both energy and water.
To minimise artificial lighting costs, daylight should also be considered within the design. As well as this, vitamin D derived from sunlight can help to improve the ‘indoor environment quality’ of a building, which benefits the health of all occupants within the structure because of its more natural design.
With the help of these processes, eco-friendly construction can help slow down the rate of climate change, which is the end goal of a construction firm that aims to make its practices greener, economically beneficial and more practically conceptualised. By using less pollutants in the construction of a building, as well as by using technologies that help to keep the environment clean, these construction methods are set to dictate the way we think of construction in the future.