Would We Benefit From The Continued Growth Of Green And Sustainable Building Construction?
The words sustainable and green in the context of sustainable building planning has become a controversial topic which typically elicits two responses.
First, some people believe that the initial cost of constructing buildings that are green and sustainable will have a profound, negative effect on the economy for a problem that does not yet have a tangible effect.
There is some truth in that statement, that those who are living today may not live to see the ocean’s water reclaim the coastal areas and cities around the world or times when oil and accessible free water may become things of the past.
Yet, as a group that is largely comprised of business people, they certainly do not see the possibility of a good investment.
The second most prominent group when the topic of green and sustainable building construction is broached recognizes that the changes which are made today will echo throughout the rest of human history.
Like many other times when new technology can be either embraced or ignored, businesses are stuck at a familiar fork in the road. They can either keep their current, oil guzzling, energy wasting business model or they can take a long term investment towards sustainable building construction with a responsible environmental management plan.
The simple fact of the matter for many industries is that adhering to green building is expensive because it requires adaptations of existing technology rather than the production of specific tools and materials for sustainable construction.
However, with continued growth of the sustainable building philosophy, there will be more desire to invest in green technologies that will benefit businesses as well as the environment.
One of the most prominent technologies to serve as an example of how an investment into green technology can result in a business and environmental harmony is solar lighting. Twenty years ago the most prominent usage of solar lighting was as a back-up battery on a calculator.
With government-backed tax breaks along with an investment into research and development companies, solar lighting is now powering town street lights, businesses, as well as private houses.
The technology development allowed the price to become more palatable for investors and resulted in easier utility. It is estimated that by 2025 solar power will account for 10% of all energy used in the United States.
image credit: DSArchitecture
The same opportunity exists again today, where the various green building construction methods such as using local material sources, using rapidly reproducing materials, and creating water efficient homes and businesses will allow the former building model to be shed in favor of one that reduces oil usage and pollution generation.
After all, generating new green energy sources has a compounded effectiveness when the energy is pumped into an efficient home or business. This will reduce the individual’s carbon footprint and save energy in the long run.
However, this ideal should be just as appealing to businesses and investors, who will need to provide the capital as well as the building expertise to continue the sustainable building construction effort.
While it may be difficult at first, the overall benefit of having readily available building plans, materials, and technology for a sustainable construction will provide the opportunity for businesses to create an entirely new market while providing housing alternatives for individuals trying to be responsible for the ecological state of the planet.