What is Sustainable construction and its importance?
There are several parties involved in a construction project directly as well as indirectly, and the aim of the project is to satisfy the demands and aspirations of the stakeholders individually and as a whole. Generally the different stakeholders directly involved in a construction project other than a sustainable development project, are the client, contractors and the local authorities but if we look deep and from a broader perspective, there are many other stakeholders that influence the process and outcomes of the project indirectly. These stakeholders are the community that would be affected by the project and the environment that would provide for as well as perish at the project's outcome. When a structure is built without using sustainable construction techniques, large quantities of toxic waste is generated that has to be disposed of somewhere else, the people living around which could be affected.
From another perspective unsustainable development projects may use non-renewable resources extensively and generate waste that impacts the environment. In order to acknowledge the requirements of these stakeholders, we need to find alternatives in the form of sustainable construction techniques and sustainable construction materials.
These indirect stakeholders have been ignored in the past, since their importance was unknown to the construction community. Sustainable construction is not only a better way of building structures but also a necessity to cater to the needs of the present as well as the future without harming or exploiting the environment and its resources. Sustainable construction aims to provide for the civil construction needs of this generation along with saving and producing enough to fulfill the needs of the future generation.
Importance of Sustainable Construction
To inculcate sustainability while constructing any structure there are some points that have to be considered right from initiation of a sustainable development project to achieve a sustainable construction project. Major points that present the importance of sustainable construction are:
- Sustainable DesignRight from the very beginning when the plan and designs of the project are taking place, sustainable development project plans and designs are adopted. The sooner sustainable options are involved in a construction project, the better sustainability of the structure which therefore leads to long term environment friendly benefits for the structure.
Early planning with sustainable development project characteristics techniques majorly affects energy usage and pollution generated. Several sustainable options and methods are available that can help in reducing time, energy and money in the long run. Regional or global assessment techniques can be used to assess the processes that have been adopted to accomplish sustainable goals. These assessment methods usually assess various components of a construction project like materials, transport, water, energy, waste, etc.
- DurabilityThe structures being built nowadays should take inspiration from the numerous buildings that can be considered to have been built using sustainable development project methods and have been standing tall without any structural damage due to use of sustainable construction materials.
These structures had been built by keeping durability as one the most essential criteria while building. Using a durable material or mix or method that improves durability also has some or many environmental and economic benefits. The cost and expertise used for maintenance and replacement of materials can be greatly reduced and less frequent on using durable materials. Some of the best materials that increase durability are brick, stone and concrete and that can also be used for sustainable development projects.
- Energy EfficiencyIn a construction process if the demand for energy usage is reduced to any possible extent, the amount of fuel consumed is decreased and therefore CO2 emission into the atmosphere is ultimately reduced. This sustainable development project method adds up as a contribution to reducing global warming.
There are many ways mentioned below in which a sustainable development project can be achieved:
- Using energy efficient and sustainable materials such as reclaimed wood, recycled material, SIPs, Ashcrete, etc. With the passing time more and more energy efficient materials are being created for construction purposes.
- Energy efficient building techniques used in sustainable development projects can improve the building structure and aesthetics along with environment friendly outcomes such as low carbon emissions from the construction industry. Accomplishing tasks using energy efficient methods and building an energy efficient structure is essential in today’s world.
- Improving the energy efficiency of equipment and using energy efficient technologies in sustainable development projects can significantly reduce energy consumption and harmful emissions. Adopting eco-friendly technologies can convert energy sources into services.
- Waste ReductionMaterials when used in sustainable development projects are used efficiently and with better accuracy to avoid excess wattage of materials. Materials with less impact value and higher sustainable quotient must be preferred along with better recycling ways.
Structures must be built to be more adaptable and reusable at all times. This reduces the waste generated from demolition processes which in turn reduces impact on the environment.
- Improved Air QualityAir quality degradation due to unsustainable development project processes can increase indoor as well as outdoor pollution. Several construction methods have poor or inadequate ventilation provision that decrease ventilation across structures. Poor ventilation can also result in residual temperatures and humidity levels that can increase pollution in and out of the building structure. Sustainable development projects have many provisions for preventing air pollution and better structural designs.
- Conservation of WaterThe present world surely considers water to be scarce in the near future. The increasing global temperature and pollution has increasingly reduced the amount of fresh water supplies. Sustainable development projects are essential currently, as all industries including the construction industry also know the importance of water conservation and thus take steps to use water sustainably in sustainable construction processes.
Several steps taken to promote sustainable consumption of water can be:
- Sustainable development project processes discourage the use of water under a high pressure system in toilets, kitchens, wash basins, etc.
- Check for leaks in the water distribution system to avoid unwanted loss of water.
- Use durable service equipment for water distribution such as strong and rust resistant pipes and valves.
- Install a specific apparatus for keeping record and monitoring of the amount of water used through meters and counters.
- Eco-Friendly MaterialsEco-friendly materials or sustainable construction materials form the base of sustainable development project methods that have zero or minimal impact on the environment as well as the community. Materials used in sustainable development projects are not only cheap but also sturdy and safe for disposal in the environment. Eco-friendly materials include a plethora of choices that are safe and economic such as bamboo, ashcrete, adobe bricks, etc.
Benefits of Sustainable Construction
The importance and benefits of sustainable construction are certainly above par when it comes to sustainable development projects.Some of the major benefits are:
- Cost EfficientSustainable construction can be considered as an essential alternative that is smart and more versatile. Sustainable development projects or Green building projects are much cheaper than traditional construction and use less resources.
- Minimal WasteSustainable development projects produce much less waste than other construction projects. Green buildings have low impact on the environment and mostly use renewable resources.
- Noise ResistanceEco-friendly or sustainable construction materials have excellent insulation to sound and heat.
In the coming times sustainable development projects are going to be preferred and due to it being cost efficient and less hazardous.
Construction management can aid in execution of a sustainable development project by monitoring and directing all construction processes efficiently. Many project management applications are available for the construction industry. Powerplay application is an excellent software tool among all that can be used to perform every function in construction project management. It includes several features and provisions in a quite simplified UI that assists in ease of its use by almost any individual.