Components of a Green Building

The Government of Alberta is playing an instrumental role in the promotion of green construction techniques, designs and materials. These steps are taken with a view to implement some of these ‘green technologies’ and elevating the global competitiveness of Alberta’s construction industry.

The Green building products and technologies market in Alberta is projected to grow up to $7.1 billion by 2025. In keeping with the increasing trend, average spending on such green materials and technologies by an Albertan is around $6,250 annually. These figures show that it is important to have knowledge about green buildings.

Energy efficiency and renewable energy

Energy Star Canada and NRCan (Natural Resources Canada) are administers and promoters of Energy Star. They partner with various homebuilders, office building managers, product manufacturers, and other such organisations and individuals. This is done with an aim to improve energy efficiency in homes and non-residential buildings.

Energy star for new homes is a programme focused on new homes being constructed.

Energy Star Portfolio Manager is an online tool which enables you to rate and monitor your building’s energy efficiency with a view of optimisation.

Water Efficiency

Water is an essential and scarce resource. It is essential that buildings use water-efficient plumbing and appliances. US EPA’s WaterSense program has been implemented in some places like Saskatchewan. Canada has its own federal programs like the Groundwater Geoscience Program.

Building materials conducive to the environment

Products which can be used for sustainable construction, and can help achieve efficiency in the matters of energy, electricity, water, indoor air quality and resource use, are parts of green buildings. This does not involve only the building blocks, but also sustainable designs and technologies.

Waste Reduction

A green building will follow the universal mantra of reduce, reuse and recycle. Reduction in waste generated through construction and demolition and providing cost efficient, environment friendly options instead of activities such as landscaping and burning of garbage, is a must.

Indoor Air Quality

Indoor air quality is one of the most important features of a green building. Through sustainable designs and energy efficient appliances, the quality of indoor air can be enhanced. Cross ventilation serves the dual purpose of keeping the place cool and reducing energy consumption.

Sustainable Development and Smart Growth

NRCan is continuously working towards sustainable development and achieving the subsequent growth with a minimal harm to the environment. It is imperative that you go through its plans and strategies to do your part in protecting the environment.

While engaging in ‘green’ construction, it is imperative that you have the right knowledge of the guidelines established by the government. It is safer to seek legal counsel in these matters from an environmental lawyer in Canada.