Four main areas need to be considered in green building: materials, energy, water and health.
These are obtained from natural, renewable sources that have been managed and harvested in a sustainable way; or they are obtained locally to reduce the embedded energy costs of transportation; or salvaged from reclaimed materials at nearby sites. Materials are assessed using green specifications that look at their Life Cycle Analysis (LCA) in terms of their embodied energy, durability, recycled content, waste minimisation, and their ability to be reused or recycled.
Fig: Natural Stone Permeable Pavers
Fig: Parasoleil Recycled Content Panels
Fig: Chocolate bamboo
Passive solar design will dramatically reduce the heating and cooling costs of a building, as will high levels of insulation and energy-efficient windows. Natural daylight design reduces a building’s electricity needs, and improves people’s health and productivity. Green buildings also incorporate energy-efficient lighting, low energy appliances, and renewable energy technologies such as wind turbines and solar panels.
Passive solar design uses sunshine to heat, cool and light homes and other buildings without mechanical or electrical devices. It is usually part of the design of the building itself, using certain materials and placement of windows or skylights.
2.1a Rules Of Passive Solar Systems
- The building should be elongated on an east-west axis.
- The building’s south face should receive sunlight between the hours of 9:00 A.M. and 3:00 P.M. (sun time) during the heating season.
- Interior spaces requiring the most light and heating and cooling should be along the south face of the building. Less used spaces should be located on the north.
2.1bThe Advantages Of Passive Solar Design
- High energy performance: lower energy bills all year round.
- Investment: independent from future rises in fuel costs, continues to save money long after initial cost recovery.
- Value: high owner satisfaction, high resale value.
- Attractive living environment: large windows and views, sunny interiors, open floor plans.
- Low Maintenance: durable, reduced operation and repair.
- Unwavering comfort: quiet (no operating noise), warmer in winter, cooler in summer (even during a power failure).
- Environmentally friendly : clean, renewable energy doesn’t contribute to global warming, acid rain or air pollution.
2.2 Passive Solar Heating
The goal of all passive solar heating systems is to capture the sun’s heat within the building’s elements and release that heat during periods when the sun is not shining. At the same time that the building’s elements (or materials) is absorbing heat for later use, solar heat is available for keeping the space comfortable (not overheated).
2.2a` Two primary elements of passive solar heating are required:
- South facing glass
- Thermal mass to absorb, store, and distribute heat.
2.2b There are three approaches to passive systems
1. Direct Gain: Sunlight shines into and warms the living space.
2. Indirect Gain: Sunlight warms thermal storage, which then warms the living space.
3. Isolated Gain: Sunlight warms another room (sunroom) and convection brings the warmed air into the living space.
Minimising water use is achieved by installing greywater and rainwater catchment systems that recycle water for irrigation or toilet flushing; water-efficient appliances, such as low flow showerheads, self-closing or spray taps; low-flush toilets, or waterless composting toilets. Installing point of use hot water systems and lagging pipes saves on water heating.
3.1 WHAT IS RAIN WATER HARVESTING :
The principle of collecting and using precipitation from a catchments surface.
An old technology is gaining popularity in a new way. Rain water harvesting is enjoying a renaissance of sorts in the world, but it traces its history to biblical times. Extensive rain water harvesting apparatus existed 4000 years ago in the Palestine and Greece. In ancient Rome, residences were built with individual cisterns and paved courtyards to capture rain water to augment water from city’s aqueducts. As early as the third millennium BC, farming communities in Baluchistan and Kutch impounded rain water and used it for irrigation dams.
3.2 Rain water harvesting is essential
Surface water is inadequate to meet our demand and we have to depend on ground water.
Due to rapid urbanization, infiltration of rain water into the sub-soil has decreased drastically and recharging of ground water has diminished.
As you read this guide, seriously consider conserving water by harvesting and managing this natural resource by artificially recharging the system. The examples covering several dozen installations successfully operating in India constructed and maintained by CGWB, provide an excellent snapshot of current systems.
3.3RAIN WATER HARVESTING TECHNIQUES :
There are two main techniques of rain water harvestings.
- Storage of rainwater on surface for future use.
- Recharge to ground water
3.3a Storage of rainwater on surface for future use.
The storage of rain water on surface is a traditional techniques and structures used were underground tanks, ponds, check dams, weirs etc.
3.3b Recharge to ground water
Recharge to ground water is a new concept of rain water harvesting and the structures generally used are Pits ,Trenches, Dug wells, Hand pumps, ect.
Using non-toxic materials and products will improve indoor air quality, and reduce the rate of asthma, allergy and sick building syndrome. These materials are emission-free, have low or no VOC content, and are moisture resistant to deter moulds, spores and other microbes. Indoor air quality is also addressed through ventilation systems and materials that control humidity and allow a building to breathe.
In addition to addressing the above areas, a green building should provide cost savings to the builder and occupants, and meet the broader needs of the community, by using local labour, providing affordable housing, and ensuring the building is sited appropriately for community needs.