Why the Green Building Boom is Good for the Construction Industry
The commitment and transition towards green construction or sustainable building is increasing as society is becoming more conscious of the environment. Building green is good for the environment, the community, and the economy. By using less energy, less water and fewer materials and natural resources, green building has a less harmful impact on the environment.
Five focused areas are to be considered with sustainable construction: sustainable sites, water efficiency, energy and atmosphere, materials and resources, and indoor environmental air quality. These categories are interconnected and are to be considered at all stages of construction. The benefits of green construction translate into a growing demand for construction companies and investors over the next several years. It is predicted that Canadian firms expect to grow their green practices from one-third (reported in 2014) to one-half by 2017. Investment in green construction can help to reduce energy use and emissions through increased efficient energy and water use, adoption of renewable energy generating technologies and improved integration of buildings and communities.
The World Business Council for Sustainable Development identifies three pillars of sustainability – the environment, social reasons and economic benefit.
- A green building has less a less harmful impact on the environment. Using recycled materials and minimizing waste during construction has a beneficial impact environmentally. After the building is completed, the owner benefits by saving as much as 70% on energy and water savings.
- In a report completed by the Canada Green Council and McGraw Hill Construction, social reasons were identified as being an important factor in building green. 42% of people surveyed said client demand and “doing the right thing:” were the top triggers for future green building projects in Canada. 60% considered the ability of green buildings to promote greater health and well-being among occupants as the most important social reason to build green.
- Investors are assured that significant dividends on their investment as 68% of owners reported decreased water consumption in their buildings. 82% of owners/developers reported decreases in energy consumption. The median reduction in operating costs over five years for green building was reduced by 17%; the median payback for the investment in a green building is approximately eight years which was consistent with studies conducted in the U.S and globally.
Taurus is a leader in the area of sustainable construction. Every precaution is taken to ensure there is no negative impact on the environment. They utilize trained and qualified personnel, implement qualified assessment services and ensure environmental standards are met when constructing and managing environmental holding areas. Site reclamation, recycling programs and proper waste handling and storage are other measures that are taken to create eco-friendly construction processes. There is currently little pressure on companies to adopt green approaches, however, many construction companies are beginning to incorporate green practices into the building cycle. Companies are realizing that the long term benefits of becoming green are positive and will become the standard down the road. With this in mind, it is likely that the green building trend will continue to expand in the coming years. Also, as the public develops a clearer understanding of what green means, energy efficient approaches will become standardized.