Green buildings have an important role to play in resolving global environmental challenges. As the construction industry gradually undergoes a green revolution, buildings will include sustainable architecture in their conception, while greener, less polluting machines will be introduced on construction equipment marketplaces such as MachineryZone.com. From New York to Melbourne, here are five buildings representing the premise of change oriented towards eco-innovation and sustainability.
The Bank of America Tower, New York
Completed in 2009, The Bank of America Tower is currently one of the most ecological buildings in the world. Built as the administrative center of the largest bank in the United States, it displays exemplary characteristics regarding energy efficiency, indoor air quality, environmentally friendly materials and construction processes.
It has its own natural gas power station which covers 70% of its electricity consumption and residual heat is reused to provide hot water and heating for the building. Rainwater is collected and used. The sun is also wisely put to contribution, not only to offer as much natural light as possible but also to provide sustainable solar energy. This skyscraper is without doubt a true model for the future of green architecture.
The Crystal, London
With a design that resembles that of the Sydney Opera House in Australia, the Crystal is a superb sustainable structure located in the heart of London’s Green Enterprise District. The building showcases exemplary energy efficiency methods: electricity, heating and air-conditioning are all produced though the use of renewable energies. As the Crystal runs entirely on green electricity, without any use of fossil resources such as oil or gas, CO2 emissions are about 70% lower than other similar buildings across the United Kingdom.
Not only is the Crystal a beautiful piece of architecture, it also stands as a symbol for eco construction. It is indeed the only building to have won the highest certification in both the BREEAM and LEED schemes.
The World Trade Center, Bahrein
In 2008, the Bahrain World Trade Center was the first skyscraper in the world to integrate wind turbines into its structure. This boldly designed structure features triangular peaks that channel the air into three built-in wind turbines. With a diameter of 30 meters, this futuristic building draws up to 15% of its electricity directly from these wind turbines. The two towers are also equipped with a clean cooling system, optimized by window orientation, and equipped with a system that uses the air currents that form in the center of the skyscraper.
Pearl River Tower, China
Designed in the shape of a sail or an aircraft wing, the Pearl River Tower could be described as an “aeolian skyscraper”. Located in Guangzhou, one of China’s main cities, this building offers a fascinating example of what a positive energy building can achieve. This skyscraper produces more energy than it consumes! With its wind turbines integrated directly within its frame, the building vacuums the wind in order to optimize its thrust on the wind turbines. This tower is a reference in this field and it will, without doubt, serve as a model for many other eco-friendly construction projects around the world.
The Pixel Building, Melbourne
Praised for its avant-garde design, the Pixel Building in Melbourne was designed to achieve carbon neutrality.
In addition to using an impressive amount of recycled materials in its construction, the building is equipped with many solar panels, an anaerobic digester to convert human waste into heat and an ecological sanitary evacuation system. Unsurprisingly, it obtained in 2012 a perfect score of 100 points under the Green Star rating system, the highest score ever granted by the Green Building Council of Australia.
Saving the Planet? It Is a Local Issue
When we get caught up in common environmental issues, we start to think that it’s a bigger problem, that is down to centralised areas and big cities. And while urban areas are expanding, the route to sustainability as a solution comes from an approach beyond urbanism. Because urban areas bear the brunt because they have more CO2 emissions and larger carbon footprints, the thing to note in this respect that saving the planet is not necessarily a large-scale issue. In fact, it is a local issue.
The largest cities require urban developments, and this is a part of modern life. But when we go back to the 1990s, when sustainable city initiatives began emerging, we can see where the argument for the compact city began. This can have a positive impact on sustainability in a variety of ways but also improves greenhouse gas emissions. But this is where smaller communities can become invaluable.
Smaller communities have more power in many respects. From the perspective of local councils, it can be easier to incorporate an initiative that benefits the community, rather than having to go all the way to Westminster. Now, it can be easier to sign up for a local initiative, such as a solar community, rather than having to get permission from a higher power. And from the perspective of a community, it is far more controllable.
Saving the planet in an urban sense is about changing the infrastructure, which can take years, if not decades. However, smaller communities are able to utilise the location for the benefit of their immediate surroundings. This is something very important to note. Whenever you want to make a significant impact, be it in charity, or in the environment, it starts at home. As saving the planet is a local issue in this respect, it’s far easier to communicate the message. Smaller communities are in close contact. This means the message is easily spread. Throw into the mix community meetings, and how businesses look to develop on local issues, rather than spearheading initiatives overseas or in big cities, and it provides a tactical methodology to help on a small scale.
When you combine this with the fact that smaller organisations such as schools, naturally have a lower carbon footprint, this is the perfect opportunity to teach the younger generations how they can positively impact the world. Saving the planet is a local issue. We have to remember that if we are to make any impact, we have to look after our own. That’s not to say that we shouldn’t rely on large organisations or big cities to do the job, but if you want to do something right, do it yourself.
Saving the planet is something that we can control from our own home. From the practices that we preach to the examples we set, saving the planet is about keeping it close to home before you start to spread yourself far and wide. If every small town started to look after its own carbon emissions, this would pay for the country, and the world, several times over.
Integrating Waste Management To Improve Business Productivity
Recently, governments have increased their incentives on business to employ environmentally friendly methods in their production lines. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that businesses are working round the clock to ensure that they adhere to the regulations.
Business waste management requires a collective effort from all the stakeholders. The employees and customers need to be sensitized on the importance of environmentally friendly practices to boost their eco-performance.
Production in business usually has many wastes ranging from energy wastage, residues, or solid wastes. You need to assess your production plan from purchasing, production, documentation, and packaging. Once you have assessed, identify the key areas that you can work on to minimize usage and wastage.
It would be best if you considered using biodegradable packaging materials that will reduce paper wastage. There are packaging materials that you can use that will help you cut on paper and plastic wastage. You can also choose to bulk purchase of materials needed to reduce the amount of packaging paper you will have.
In the past, electrical wires were manufactured using cloth wires to enhance insulation, longevity, and safety in the workplace. You easily damage the wires during daily production activities, and its disposal could create large volumes of unnecessary plastics.
Though you can recycle these wastes, the costs incurred compared to the systems’ service is a loss to the business. However, this industrial practice has been discontinued and restructured to alternative uses due to technological advancements.
Using Renewable Energy Sources also plays a significant role in reducing energy wastage. There will be fewer emissions into the environment, and you will also reduce the energy costs you use. The employees need to be sensitized on efficient energy management practices like switching off machines and lights that are not in use, proper usage of specific equipment, and immediate repair and service of machines once they break down.
Building and Construction
Contractors involved in building and construction have included energy and environmental management in their practice. Several businesses have taken the liberty to redesign the buildings to use efficient energy sources and recycled materials. This development is a step in the right direction of environmental management.
The wastes in the business need to be properly disposed of to observe hygiene and cleanliness. Poor garbage disposal techniques will endanger the health of the employees and the immediate community.
It would help if you employed recycling techniques like water treatment plants in the industry to reduce the toxicity of the waste. The types of strainers, baskets, and traps used in the water treatment plant play a significant role in the quality of the process equipment.
To ascertain the water treatment plant’s quality, you need to take a keen interest in the types of weaving employed in its manufacture. Be sure to investigate if the weaving matches your purpose of the plant and your content of waste.
Waste management is a gradual process that has its profitable returns. It helps you to cut down on some costs and increases productivity.
How To Save Water At Work
When you’re at home, you know how to save water and do better for your house. Living in a green way is easy at home, but what about at work? When you are not the owner of a business premises, it’s not always easy to be green. However, there are things that you can do as a business that will ensure that you are analyzing your water efficiency and you can then reduce the water use in your workplace.
Below, we’ve put together some of the best ways that you can conserve water in your workplace. You can continue your green efforts in the workplace this way!
Get Your Management Team On Your Side
If you are planning to start water conservation efforts at work, you need the rest of your management team on your side. They need to be happy to work with you and ensure that your water conservation efforts are successful. If you’re working as one team, you’re far more likely to save the planet a little aggravation and you can successfully prevent flooding, too.
You need to know the best ways to conserve water, and we’re willing to bet that you haven’t looked at whether you can get permission from your landlord about installing water tanks from watertankfactory.com.au/water-tanks-dalby/. You need to research what you can and cannot do in terms of saving water in any way possible.
Put Together A List
You need to know why you are saving water and what it will be for. Filtering rainwater for free, drinkable water in the office is a genius way to keep employees cool. You can also use it for the external garden of your business, as a way to flush the toilets and you can also use it to clean the floors.
Know How You Already Use Your Water
How does your business consume water? Where is it mostly used through the working week? If you can ensure that you are using your water properly, you will be able to encourage your staff to do the same thing. Conservation only works when everyone is on board!
Bring In The Experts
Do you have leaky faucets? Are you dealing with pipes that are broken or cracked in any way? Any of these things can cause your water payments to shoot right up. Bringing in the experts to assess your current water systems and evaluate your pipework is the best way to ensure that you are saving water. You can stop the waste when you have someone in to assess what you are dealing with.
By buying rainwater tanks and saving the rainfall, you can use less of the water from the faucets and the pipes in the building. You can add a good filtration system and this will help you to get rid of the nasties in the water and reduce the contaminants that you could be facing.
Water conservation is not just for your house. And now you know how to get it right!
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