Green Building Affect The Environment Construction Essay

Published: Last Edited:

This essay has been submitted by a student. This is not an example of the work written by our professional essay writers.

The construction of cities-residential, industrials, roads and other related infrastructures had an insightful impact on the environment. Reduction in inhabitant vegetation envelop, enlarged rain water flows, accelerated corrosion of earth and stream, increased residue deposition and increased atmospheric make up the foremost harmful impacts from construction development. By recalled back the way we build-up and rebuild-up, majority of these environmental issues can be reduced and eliminated utterly, leaving us with fit homes and effervescent society.

In general, green building is commonly known as sustainable building, the structures in which it minimizes the overall impact to the lowest level of the built environment and as well as on human's health by implicating few of the elements such as :

Efficiently using energy, water, and other resources

Protecting inhabitant health and improving worker efficiency

Decreasing dissipate, pollution and environmental humiliation

Recently, the atmosphere (thinning of ozone layer) has been hot topic in everywhere. Everyone is looking forward to solve this issue before it has developed into worse scenario. Therefore, the environmental impact can be solved in positive way with the application of green building index (GBI).

Basically, the notion of green development can be traced to the energy crisis and the environment greenhouse gasses. The green building factions in the United States originated from necessitate and yearning for more energy efficient and environmentally friendly structure practice.

Sustainable building brings equally an infinite assortment of practices and techniques to trim down and ultimately abolish the impacts of structure on the environment and human health. It regularly emphasizes enchanting the development of renewable resources.

As an example, in this modern century, many residential and commercial buildings are using sunlight through passive solar and active solar in order to practice sustainability in environment. Furthermore, there is also encouragement through vegetation and trees through green roofs, and for lessening of rainfall run-off.

Most sustainable buildings conserve certain parts of the property to remain undeveloped, in order to ensure the habitation remain undamaged and undisturbed. Green constructions moreover deal with the building progression to ensure that every waterway remain uncontaminated with construction by-products. This is proved when they took landscaping keen on relation.

The concepts of sustainable constructions make up a system to considerably preserve energy and to put in a fit internal and external environment in many ways. Besides helping the external environment surrounding, sustainable structure can improve human health. In exertion settings, green construction spurs further efficiency, a cost profit not all the time taken into account.

One resource defines that "buildings with excellent in general environmental quality can decrease the rate of respiratory infection, allergic reaction, asthma, sick construction symptoms, and improve employee performance. The potential economic profits of humanizing internal environments exceed costs by a factor of 8 and 14. Natural sunlight has demonstrated advantages, while clean, uncontaminated air reduces ill days and increases production.

As a conclusion, green constructions are buildings that work in harmony with the adjoining natural atmosphere, that harm the environment as modest as achievable. High-performing sustainable buildings afford the greatest assessment for the taxpayer and for the community throughout together the life cycle outlay settlement and optimistic impacts on human healthiness and output in the result. The United States Green Building Council (USGBC) clarifies that sustainable building design and construction as intentional "to drastically decrease or abolish the negative impact of structures on the environment and on the building occupant."

What is LEED?

In general, LEED is the voluntary program known as Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design and this is third-party certification which is acknowledged standard in measuring the sustainability of the buildings. By achieving this certificate, the architect, developer or occupant can prove how sustainable and 'green' the building is.

Moreover, the certification benefits the developer to gain increasing figure of state and local government incentives, as well as it could advance the media attention in his development. Basically, LEED is a countrywide renowned organization for design, function and construction of excellent performance in sustainable structure.

Today, there are 135 countries whereby the LEED certification is successfully introduced and recognized. This is to make sure the structures in worldwide are environmental friendly, endow with a fit employment environment and provide advantageous in internal and external environment in terms of economic and social.

The figure above shows the reduction of energy use, carbon emissions, water use and solid waste in certifications by year in the participants of LEED program

The sustainable buildings that certified with LEED are imposing increasing number of occupancy than the non-green buildings. This is because the design of LEED reducing the maintenance cost and moreover it increases the asset value as the quality of life is improved with LEED certification and attracts large number of tenants.

The smart growth, new urbanism and green buildings are the main aspects which improve the quality of life.

LEED qualifications include both materials and energy efficiency as the point rating system. This is because the recycled construction materials and energy efficient appliance have significant impact in measuring the sustainability of the building. In the political atmosphere of today's earth, we know that the earth's natural resources such as trees and fossil fuels are being depleted at distressing rate the construction production is being constrained to look at alternatives to conventional construction equipments and ways.

Economic Aspect - Economic Benefits of Sustainable design

Lower first cost

Green design has to initiate at the conceptual stage of a project in order to realize its full benefits. Firstly, design team must be formed. The following is the members involved:

This team is required to work together from the beginning in order to seek an integrated design. Innovative design is developed to meet energy, environmental, and social goals at the same time keeping costs within budget. The team can include many strategies that would increase first costs via their collective, interdisciplinary analytical capability. The team can include some costly sustainable features which meet environmental target as well as reduce operating costs by remove unnecessary features such as expensive finishes. In a green building design project, tradeoff exercise is conducted. This can be achieved by trading off the cost of optional features against the cost of features that will result in the improvements of energy, environmental or social. Concentrating on integrated design and evaluating tradeoffs will have a lower or same cost compared to a more traditional building. Some design and construction strategies which a team can use to reduce first costs are shown as following:

Optimize site and orientation

Re-use/renovate older buildings and use recycled materials.

Reduce project size

Eliminate unnecessary finishes and features.

Avoid structural overdesign and construction waste

Fully explore integrated design, including energy system optimization

Use construction waste management approaches

Decrease site infrastructure

Concrete with slag content or fly ash

Carpet with recycled content

Low-emitting paint and recycled paint

Certified wood products

No-water urinals

Figure: Energy-Related Features of the Visitors Center

Energy cost saving

A building's energy costs can be effectively minimized using a wide a range of building design methods and technologies available. Integrating the architectural and mechanical features of building is an important concept in sustainable design to lessen energy use and decrease cost while maintaining comfort. When the most cost effective holistic system can be designed, the integration is best done during the very early stages. The annual cost savings result in lower lifecycle costs although some energy efficiency strategies have a higher first costs.

Furthermore, innovative entrepreneurs introduce latest products that reduce excessive energy consumption and have short paybacks. For instance, a device reduces the electricity consumed by vending machines up to 46% with a payback period 1 to 2 years while maintaining the proper temperature of the food.

Moreover, commissioning is another important aspect of achieving energy efficiency in new building. This refers to the justification and

Annual water cost savings

Water efficiency can be achieved using several technologies that decrease indoor water consumption such as no-water urinals, ultra-low-flow showerheads and faucet aerators and dual-flush toilets. Facilities can also lower drinkable water consumption by using:

Using nonpotable water for productive uses. For example, using rainwater harvesting system that harvest rainwater or treat wastewater for re-use in various other applications in the buildings,

better energy systems,

re-circulating water systems,

leak detection and repair,

sustainable landscaping

Various water-saving approaches are available including site-specific techniques and process-oriented technologies. However, the following measures are very cost effective:

Cooling towers are one of the largest water users for large office buildings, hospitals, and industrial facilities. Dissolved solids remain in the system and build up over time as water is evaporated through the tower, requiring water to be purged from the system through what is known as "bleed-off." Maintaining water quality is important in saving water in cooling towers and decreasing bleed-off. Proper water quality can be maintained and bleed-off and water consumption can be reduced by chemical treatment, side stream filtration, and ozonation.

Boiler and steam systems are always found in central plants, hospitals, large office buildings, barracks, and industrial process plants. Water use in these systems can be reduced by proper maintenance of steam traps and condensate return.

Leak detection and repair of water distribution systems can provide large water savings with very quick payback. Water losses and operating costs can be reduced by such systems and understanding of system operating characteristics can be increased.

Lower Costs of Facility Maintenance and Repair

Green building designs seeks to enhance durability and ease of maintenance. Cost of scheduled maintenance, repair, and eventual replacement will e reduced by easy access. The methods below can also reduce annual maintenance costs using sustainable design:

Maintenance and repair costs can be reduced using durable, long-lasting green materials. For example, cement companies have tested fly ash and slag concretes and found that, if properly cured, they have greater strength and durability than concrete made from normal Portland cement.

First rate durability according to some vendors is offered using low-emitting paints.

Designing buildings with areas for efficient and convenient collection of recyclable materials, such as paper, plastic, and glass, can reduce annual waste disposal costs.

Labor costs for maintenance is reduced using fluorescent lamps. These lamps last about 10,000 hours as opposed to 1,000 hours for incandescent lamps. Thus, about 10 lamp changes are avoided by using fluorescent lamps.

A roof's lifetime can be prolonged by lightening roof colour.

The need to replace carpet is reduced by using recycled carpet tiles that can be removed and replaced individually.

Lawn mowing, fertilizer use, and irrigation are usually decreased by using sustainable landscaping techniques and has short payback periods.

Lower Absenteeism and Improved Productivity

Building dwellers respond to some features of green buildings by working more productively, making fewer errors, and being absent less often, hence reducing labor costs.

Figure below shows that, as a fraction of total expenditures, labor costs in the government far exceed construction, energy, or other annual costs, so measures that positively influence worker performance and absenteeism rates could have a much higher financial impact than energy efficiency or other measures affecting operating costs.

Figure:annual federal government costs

Lower Cost of Dealing with Complaints

Building maintenance engineers spend hours dealing with complaints when building occupants are uncomfortable. Green buildings that have well-designed HVAC and control systems that have been specially made are less possible to experience comfort problem.

Less time dealing with complaints bring about more time to complete preventive maintenance tasks, increasing equipment longevity and reducing operating costs overall.

Decreased Risk, Liability, and Insurance Rates

Building owners and operators deal with a wide range of risks which are particularly troublesome and costly in mission-critical governmental activities. Those risks may be partly mitigated by green building design.

Property loss prevention.

Some sustainable building technologies decrease the probability of physical damages and losses in facilities. For instance, the chances of property damage from flooding, mudslides, and soil subsidence are reduced by sustainable siting. The risk of ice-dam formation on roofs is reduced by competent thermal envelopes and reduction in losses from lower-level lighting or thermal distribution systems located above ceilings.

Business interruption loss prevention.

Unintended power outages and improperly designed or maintained HVAC systems can trigger temporary closure of facilities, resulting in interruption of operations and relocation costs. Using onsite energy generation resources and energy-efficiency features, these business interruption risks is reduced.

Hedge against energy price and cost increases.

Energy is a major part of facility operating costs. The chances of budget overruns from unexpected energy price spikes can be reduced by energy-efficient design that reduces overall consumption.

Natural disaster awareness and recovery.

A range of energy-efficient and renewable technologies make facilities less exposed to natural disaster events, such as heat catastrophes, which are a particularly high risk for centralized operated low-income housing. Well-insulated attics, natural ventilation, and heat-reflective roofing materials can significantly lower indoor temperatures during heat waves, averting hospitalization or loss of life. Using triple-glazed windows can lessen the threat of fire-related losses.

Greater Building Longevity

Many principles of green building design lead to longer building lifespan and better flexibility of the building for future uses that cannot always be foreseen. Total construction costs will be lower over the long run if buildings do not have to be regularly demolished and replaced. For example, keeping a building's initial form simple will make it easier to change as needs develop.

Ease of Siting

The natural environmental advantages of a green building will decrease its bad environmental impacts and enhance its acceptability to regulatory bodies, the surrounding communities, environmental groups, and other interested parties. These benefits will be likely to lower both the time delays and the cost related with siting the building. Gaining early respect and support from a community can greatly boost up project approvals.

Economic Aspect - Motivators behind Energy Efficiency

The main motivators identified behind energy efficiency are shown as following:

Financial consideration:

Financial consideration is the crucial aspect that will affect capital allocation to sustainability improvements. The managers will allocate capital to the investment if it sounds logical from economic point of view and the capital is available. Besides, some property managers stated that the tenants are keen to spend money on their own space if the improvements pay for themselves during their term lease. Correspondingly, owners are willing to invest in green building if they are capable to recover the initial costs and obtain a suitable return on investment. Average hold period, cost of capital and expected return on investment are the other factors influencing the financial considerations.

Marketing advantage:

Other than financial motivations, there are various nonfinancial motivations towards green technology. Most of the property managers reported that increasing their knowledge on green technology is a strategic step to award the business. For instance, a property manager buys a half-page advertisement in the newspaper advertising the reductions in energy expense he had achieved for property owners. In addition, some management firms use their knowledge on green technology to award property management contracts as well as consulting contracts. Some property management firms take into account the management efficiency of a building only as a service to the clients.

Market differentiator:

Improvements of energy efficiency are not only deemed as a method to reduce operating expenses but also as a method to differentiate a building from others. Several managers declared that energy efficiency features are part of a new shifting class standard for Class A buildings. For instance, a toilet that does have faucets and paper towels dispensers may consider outdated compared to a similar building with these features. The features of energy efficiency become tangible and visible qualities of a building.

Indicator of management:

An efficient building may also be a market indication to tenants and potential buyers of experienced asset management. This is a chronic topic since managers involved in obtaining properties expressed that they may be more careful in buying a property lacking energy efficient features. This is not only an indicator that there may be important capital costs to improve the building after the acquisition, but may signify the previous owner possible either did not have enough capital to maintain the property appropriately or was just inexperienced.

Paradigm shift:

Some managers shared stories of tangential benefits to making improvements of energy efficiency. For example, a property manager switched the janitorial service to a daytime cleaning schedule. Besides saving energy due to light up the building at night is not required, tenants are also able to request specific cleaning tasks and check quality. For another example, a property manager removed inefficient fans in the HVAC distribution for more efficient fans. The modern fans are quieter and tenants are satisfied with the decrease in noise level.

Malaysia Government in Green (Budget 2010)

In recent years, green development recognising the social and environmental costs involved is given greater focus by the Malaysian Government. The importance given to this area is reflected by the Ministry of Energy, Green Technology and Water in 2009.

Tax Exemption

From a tax perspective, a series of tax incentives has been introduced by the Malaysian Government in the past in order to encourage companies to be environmentally friendly by investing in energy efficient systems and generation of energy using renewable energy sources. 

In addition, to promote green technology, the Government proposes that:

First: Income tax exemption equivalent to the additional capital expenditure is given to the building owners in obtaining GBI Certificates from 24 October 2009 until 31 December 2014 : and

Second: Stamp duty exemption on instruments of transfer of ownership is given to the buyers who purchase buildings with GBI Certificates from developers from 24 October 2009 until 31 December 2014.

National Green Technology Policy

Green technology has the potential to become an important sector in economic development. Towards this, in August 2010, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak has launched the National Green Technology Policy which revealed the Government's intention to stimulate the adoption of green technology in the building industry. The objective of the policy is to provide direction towards management of sustainable environment.

To further promote the development of green technology activities, the Government will:

Restructure the Malaysia Energy Centre as the National Green Technology Centre tasked with formulating a green technology development action plan. To intensify green awareness activities and practice environment-friendly lifestyle, an allocation of RM20 million will be provided.

Organize an international exhibition on green technology in April 2010. The exhibition is expected to attract internationally renowned companies and experts in green technology.

Develop Putrajaya and Cyberjaya as pioneer townships in Green Technology, as a showcase for the development of other townships.

Besides that, a fund amounting to RM1.5 billion is established by the Government. This fund provides soft loans to companies that supply and utilize green technology. The maximum financing for suppliers is RM50 million whereas for consumer companies is RM10 million. 2% of the total interest rate will be bear by the Government. In addition, a guarantee of 60% on the financing amount, with the remaining 40% by banking institutions is provided by the Government. Loan applications can be made through the National Green Technology Centre. This scheme commenced on 1 January 2010 and is benefited to 140 companies.