This paper explores what makes building material green. Green building materials are materials that have less impact on the environment, human health, economy and productivity as well. Since buildings have significant impacts of the environment, design professional have resolved to the use of green materials in building process so as to eliminate waste and to conserve the environment. Construction of buildings consumes a lot of energy use and also emits a lot of carbon dioxide in the environment. Construction also consumes a lot of raw material each year.
Buildings made from green material are healthier, energy efficient than other buildings and more durable. This paper will concisely articulate what sustainability and green building products are. This paper will also determine and explore if a product is green. Lastly, this paper will evaluate the relative greenness of different products.
Construction of buildings has intense environmental, health, economic and productivity impacts. 20% of global energy use is from buildings. Buildings also emit 20% of carbon dioxide to the environment. For these reasons, many builders have resolved in the use of green building since it has financial, health and environmental benefits. Many countries that practise sustainability have also supported the green building movement. Statistics in the U. S. show that green building construction will rise from 2% in 2005 to 10% of the constructed buildings by the year 2010 and therefore the country will have save about $30. billion. The green building initiatives in the U. S. has established more that 80 green building programs both regionally and locally. The local governments are also involved in the promotion of the green building by creating innovating ways of supporting the programs (NACo Green Government Initiative 1). In Europe and North America, many architects are involved in designing sustainable designs also known as the green building designs. This is due to their clients’ demands and their recognition in protecting the environment.
Globally, there is a lot of support form the people in establishing environmental friendly buildings (Pearce 129). There is need of financing low energy buildings so as to enhance performance. Governments should initiate more programs that enhance building of green buildings. This process will therefore eliminate the environmental hazards and increase global health standards while reducing costs (Baden et al. 8-1). The green building has made tremendous benefits globally. The initiative has help in the conservation of the environment, health and financial issues (NACo Green Government Initiative 1).
What is Sustainability? Sustainability is being responsible to the world especially environment and in energy saving. Sustainability is a social program that helps in energy saving and other global protection of the environment. It deals with issues on the environment, economy and society (Langdon 6). In order for the building process to be sustainable, there is need of taking care of the environment, health issues and the finances of the society. Sustainability has led to the establishment of green buildings since it helps in the protecting the air we breath (Wiaderski 2).
Green buildings prevent the particles such as Volatile Organic Compounds off-gassings, carcinogenic among other airborne particles from filling people’s lungs. Green building eliminates the use of paints and adhesives that emits these volatile organic compounds. The process of using green materials such as the Dryvit coatings and adhesives, which are water based helps in the elimination of the harmful chemicals in the environment (Wiaderski 3). Many hospitals and schools are being sustainable by using green materials in the constructions process.
This has therefore helped in ensuring that people live in environments that are safe and healthy. For sustainability to be ensured, designers are now using green materials that are environmental friendly (Wiaderski 3). To ensure that there is sustainability, there are many building standards that have been introduced. For example the National-recognized green building rating standards have been established for the builders and designers to ensure that they are making buildings that are protect the environment and the health standards of the people (NACo Green Government Initiative 3).
In sustainability, builders try to eliminate the use of fibreglass insulation and other such products in order to protect the human health standards. This is the reason why builders use the Dryvit system in insulation since it helps in the improvement of the quality of the air in building (Wiaderski 4). To ensure sustainability in green building construction and design, the major factors to consider are efficiency in energy and other resources. This is done by ensuring that the designed buildings should of low energy consumption.
This is practical by the use of the Dryvit systems which adds a constant insulation layer on the exterior walls of a building. The Dryvit system also minimizes the thermal breaks of the building. This process of insulation of the exterior wall helps in energy conservation and it also improves the indoor air quality of a building. Insulation also helps in resisting bad weather conditions. Insulation of the exterior walls is also advantageous to the northern climates since it increase the temperature of the wall cavity which therefore helps in the minimization of the condensation process inside the cavity of the walls.
This process is also advantageous to the southern climate since it helps in reducing the air infiltration therefore protecting the wall cavity by minimising the entry of the heavily saturated moist air. This helps in the reducing mold growth and condensation on the wall cavity (Wiaderski 4). A study conducted by Oak Ridge National Laboratories on the building material concludes that the Dryvit wall system is a building system that conserves energy of the wall system and therefore it was suggested that the system should be used in the commercial construction of the U. S. buildings (Kosny et al. Whole Wall Rating / Label for Dryvit Wall System Steady State Thermal Analysis). For sustainability, designers need to use products that protect the economy of the people and the country. Green products are durable and they also don’t need be maintained and repaired constantly. One practical example is the use of the Dryvit systems which is adaptable. This systems’ repair and maintenance process does not need to be harshly removed nor does not require demolition (Wiaderski 5). The base coat of the green products has a reinforced mesh that is embedded on them to ensure durability and resistance for more than 30 years.
Since the green products are durable and resistant, they have been found to be cost effective. For example the Dryvit systems have been found to be cost effective due to its durability and other advantageous aspects (Egan et al. Projected Life Cycle Cost of Exterior Insulation Finish Systems). There are green building practices that help in the sustainability. This includes the use of the indoor air quality. In this practice, the designers and the builders ensure that they make buildings that have quality indoor air systems.
This practice involves concepts such as relationships of the ventilations and the indoor air. Other concepts include the use of the simple dose in building process and source identification. Other concepts include strategies and options of source control and design and operations of ventilation systems. There are other concepts such as the selection and specification of material and procedure of construction. Lastly, other concepts for best practices in the construction process include the maintenance, operation and renovations (Levin Best Sustainable Indoor Air Quality Practices in Commercial Buildings).
Exploration Green Building Products Green building products are materials that have less or none impacts of the environment. These materials are not hazardous materials and they allow for the eradication of the other hazardous building products. There are many classifications of green products. In the classification of the green building products, the building products are evaluates using their negative and positive impacts and thereafter, the products with most positives are classified as a green product (Wilson Building Materials).
There are products that fall into multiple classifications and others that fall into one classification. The classifications of the green products include durability, zero-gassing, toxicity, longevity and resource efficiency. Other classifications include environmental impacts and energy efficiency. Green products are building products with various environmental and cost benefits. Green products have long-term performance benefits (Wiaderski 2). Green products are combined with the building designs to help in the reduction of the negative environmental effects.
Deign and building professions the use the green designs ensure that they give vigilant attention to the aspects that oversee the projects’ designs. Buildings made from green products are airtight and therefore keeps the buildings from interior and exterior contaminations. Constructions that use green materials ensure that there is a healthy environment to the people in the society (Wiaderski 2). The green products are classified in the category of energy rating, life cycle costs and health conditions (Wiaderski 4).
The common features of the green buildings include the energy conservation in which include factors such insulation, mechanical equipment and efficient lights as well. The other feature include the utilization of solar energy in which factors such as space heating, cooling and water heating are considered. There is also the water conservation feature which ensures that there are fixtures of low consumption. Other features of the green products include the recycled material incorporation and materials with low emissions improved indoor air quality ventilation (Levin Best Sustainable Indoor Air Quality Practices in Commercial Buildings).
The other features of the green products include the development sites that less destructive to the environments which include processes such as run-off control, water courses and other natural habitats preservations. The other feature is the treatment of the on-site waste water. There are also features such the use of refrigeration and fire systems that have compounds that reduce or eliminate ozone-depletion. The other feature include the use of life cycled materials and assessment of the building projects’ environmental impacts.
The last feature of the green products is the use of recycled products (Levin Best Sustainable Indoor Air Quality Practices in Commercial Buildings). Green building materials are sustainable to the environment since they help in the improvement of the health standards of the people. These are recycled materials that are highly durable. These products are categorised in criteria such as the resource efficient products which include products such salvage products, post-consumer and pre-consumer products. This category also includes products such as waste agricultural materials.
The green products also include product that are non toxic which include products such as the natural processed and non ozone-depletion products. This category also includes non hazardous products and other environmental protection products. The other category of the green products includes the energy and the water efficiency products which include products such heat reducing building components and energy conserving equipments. Other products include the energy renewable equipment and water conserving equipments (Port 3).
The last category of the green products includes the safe and healthy built environment products. These products include the non-pollutant products and products that reduce the contamination spread. Other products that are in this category include the indoor pollutants removers’ products and products that are used in warning about health hazards. Other products include that are light improvers and help in the control of noise. Lastly, this category includes products that help in community well-being’s enhancement (Port 3).
Homes that are made from green products are durable, healthier and more efficient that other home. Components of a green home include selection of strategic sites to reduce environmental impacts. The other component is designs that help in conserving water and energy and waste. The other components include designs that minimize usage of materials and therefore reduce the needs to maintain the homes. Homes made from the green materials possess components that are recycled and are therefore efficient to the energy conservation. These components also use sources that are renewable (NACo Green Government Initiative 1).
Green products have been used by the USA’s Green Building Resource Centre. These products help in the conserving the energy, water and natural resources. The products also help in the protection of the indoor environment of the buildings (Levin 465-482). How to determine a green product Green products are determined by how they meet the requirements of the performance. These requirements include the factors such as being sufficient and durable. The other requirements of the performance include the strength predictability and stability.
Other requirements are such as moisture, decay and bio-contamination resistance and have less cost compared to other products. The other requirement includes factors of being non-toxic and non-hazardous to the people around. Lastly, these products are able to be efficiently and effectively installed (Pearce 3). The other way to determine whether a product is green is by ensuring that the product is not negatively an impact to the ecosystems. In this way, one should ensure that the product is harvested sustainably and is also non-accumulative and non-toxic to the environment.
Another way of determining the product id this category is by ensuring that the product is recyclable and is cost effective since it does not have to be repair and maintained. Products in this criterion also produce waste that can be reused and recovered (Pearce 4). Another way to determine the green products is by ensuring that the products are able to be renewed. In this criterion, the products are checked is they are renewable and if they can be harvested sustainably. The other things to consider are whether the products are materials that are closed loop. This means that the products should be checked whether they are reused or recycled.
Other things to consider in this criterion are things such as whether the product is adaptable or reusable and also whether they are non-renewable. Lastly, the products are checked whether they use unsustainable material (Pearce 5). The other factors that determine whether a product is green include factors such as green products saves energy. In this factor the products are determined whether they help in the reduction of the heating and cooling loads. Other factors are whether the products use reduces energy levels. Lastly, the green products are products that can produce energy.
Products can be determined as green products when they protect the natural resources. In this factor, the products are checked whether they have recycled content and whether they are made from agricultural waste. Products that use less material and are made from materials that are swiftly renewable also fall in this category. The products in this category are those that are made from managed forest and are also products that are salvaged (OFGEM A review of the Energy Efficiency Commitment 2002-2005). The other factor that can make a product green is when they can conserve water.
The products include those that can conserve and consume less water. The other way to determine whether the products are green is by checking whether the products have contributed in the safety and healthiness of the indoor environment. In this way the products are determined whether that have effects on the indoors. Such products should not release and pollutants in the buildings. Products in this category do not remove pollutants in the indoor environment (Mendell 227-236). Lastly, products can be determined to be green when they reduce the impacts of buildings on the community.
These products are those that moderate the storm water effects and also help in the provision of access to transportation modes that are alternatives to other transportation modes. These are also products that treat without the use of the chemicals and also do not components that deplete the ozone (Levin 173-175). Practical examples of the buildings and projects which are among the 10 winners of “What makes it green 2008 winners” that have been used in the illustration of the green products include the Bertschi School in Seattle WA which was helped the people in the area to minimize the usage of transportation.
The other example is the Centre of Urban Waters project in the Tacoma that is used in storm water runoff reduction. The other illustration is of the Corvallis CoHousing project in the Corvallis which has ensure that the there is minimization of the use of the resources through sharing. There is also the illustration of Kitsap Sustainable Energy and Economic Development that encourages clean energy development (Dispenza Green Building Elements: What makes it Green? 2008 Winners).
The greenness of products can be evaluated from different perspectives for example according to their durability, stability, strength and speed. The greenness of products can be judged from the way a product or a material reduces its demand for landfills especially the cement company Ceratech in the U. S which makes use of recycled fly ash to manufacture Redimax cement. Ceratech, Inc a technology company for materials focuses in the enlargement and the commercialization of inventive green cement sustainable knowledge (Stone 1).
The Romans used the volcanic ash (Pozzolan) which they mixed together with lime in order to manufacture the cement for constructing Coliseums, Pantheon and Pont du Gard Aqueduct in Southern France which are strong to date. Pozzolans include fly ash, timber ash, slag and residue from publicly consequential garbage which are blazed at elevated temperatures. The Ceratech Company uses fly ash in producing Redimax which is their cement for all household productions though it manufactures its cement locally by using Class N volcanic ash pozzolans to produce their cement.
Fly residue, is a diaphanously alienated coal incineration derivative which is collected by electrostatic precipitators from the chimney gases. A rough calculation of 60% which equals to 42 M tons of fly ash is land filled in the U. S. per annum (Fanney et al Second International Green Building Conference and Exposition). There is a reduction in carbon footprint of concrete due to the replacement of Portland cement with fly ash since the production of a single ton of Portland cement gives production to roughly one ton of carbon dioxide.
Ceratech technology of revolutionary cement is a footstep of change to the industry of construction by providing the cement which is environmental friendly and is engineered for its potency, momentum, permanence and its long-standing toughness. Fly ash which is a post industrial fritter away stream is utilised by Ceratech, in order to produce structural cement of high presentation worldwide encompassing of more than 90%materials from cast-off waste (Stone 3). The recycling process preserves the virgin material hence eliminating the mining of raw materials which are needed to produce Portland cement.
It also reduces the emissions of carbon dioxide by making the replacement of Portla1nd cement to every ton of Portla1nd cement produced. World wide, Portland cement gives a contribution of 6% to 8% of all the gases of Carbon dioxide released per year (Consoli et al Guideline for Life-Cycle Assessment: A `Code of Practice’ Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry). There is also the reduction of the energy consumed since the Ceratech Company is produced by the use of an amalgamation process of low energy powder against the calcining process of high temperatures.
The Ceratech Company has done a careful manufacturing of their cement for the applications where strength, durability and strength are the preferred distinctiveness of a substance. There is competence of energy since their Pozzolanic cement requires 99% less energy to produce a corresponding amount of cement from Portland (CERATECH Green Sustainable Structural Building Material Technology: Driving Change through Innovative Thinking). The logistics behind the Redimax cement is that, it is shipped, handled, stored and batched like the Portland cement and it can either be transported by rail, truck or barge.
Since the dangerous constituent of sustainable1 construction is durability, there is a designed subject to allow Ceratech maximizing the performance characteristics in order to come up with the constructing concrete which will last for long. The deterioration resistant of Redimax, low permeability does helps in resisting the establishment of the corrosive cell within the ma1trix of the concrete and in so doing there is eradication of characteristic costs which associate with the traditional corrosion performances of protection, coatings and sacrificial fundamentals.
Hence there is extended cycle of the life of a construction. The strengths of green material can also result from its comprehensive strength since the cement concrete acquires rapid characteristic of hardening so that it gives an easy generation of more than five hours comprehensive strengths of 2,000 psi without any negative impact working time (CERATECH Green Sustainable Structural Building Material Technology: Driving Change through Innovative Thinking).
The Sulfate Resistance of the cement evaluates the greenness of the product by examining its uniform density and extreme fine pore structure which increases its resistance to the penetration by water or substance. There is evaluation of greenness of products in terms of Improved Flexural Strengths whereby when they are associated with Redimax there is a typical of 15% to 18% compressive strengths of correspondence. There is an allowance of reduced loading stress from the cement in order to substrate for slab on grade work more effectively than the Portland cement concrete.
The enhancement of flexural capabilities does provide for potential incorporation to longer spans fore important applications which are structural (CERATECH Green Sustainable Structural Building Material Technology: Driving Change through Innovative Thinking). The greenness of a product can be evaluated in terms of the expenses for instance the Ceratech construction expenses were reduced together with its direct and indirect value of the building project which leads o the enhancement of the breadth of a company’ s exclusive cement distinctiveness.
The construction costs include reduced labour costs which are as a result of the compression of the project schedule. The compression also diminished costs, for charter items such as shoring organization, formwork and special apparatus. There is also the reduction of eliminate issues which are in association with the rejected concrete due to the discharge requirement of water within a period of 90 minutes. The construction cost reduction leads to the reduced prices in material costs by as much as 30% (CERATECH Green Sustainable Structural Building Material Technology: Driving Change through Innovative Thinking).
There is also operating costs which lead to the decrease of heating and cooling costs due to decrease on the whole thermal mass of the building. There is also outstanding confrontation to damage from the liquefying congeal, scaling and chemical assaults and the extension of the suitability for local, situation and centralized taxes by means of GREEN inducement curriculum. There is also maximized reduction on saleable space expenses for example the reduced size structural mechanism by means of greater square recording.
The evaluation of the greenness of a product can be gauged in terms of the innova1tion, aesthetics and environmental leadership. Innova1tion can be observed from the superior mechanical properties in order to give allowance to the increase in the usable space by decreasing the column footprints, breadth of the slab, the height of the ceiling and the increased free distance lengths. There is also the increase of 30% in the increase fire charges.
The other evaluation of greenness in innovation on innovation is the creation of blast dead set against structures, the rapid build dry piled block structures utilizing the innovatory and also the design storm resistant colossal stonework structures (CERATECH Green Sustainable Structural Building Material Technology: Driving Change through Innovative Thinking). There is also the environmental leadership which entails the requirement of the technology of the product company as either stonework block concrete. This will do away with a single ton of carbon dioxide gas for every 3 yards of concrete.
The efficiency, strength and safety of a product can brought out thr3ough greenness by the example of the technology of Ceratech cement technology which exceeds ASTM-C-1600 in all the groupings of testing. Whereby increase in the power gives allowance for greater suppleness of design, efficiency and the general presentation of building. The greenness of the product can also be observed from the efficiency of the design for instance in the Ceratech Company whereby the ultra high strength hollow core floor board consent to greater free duration extensions.
There is reduction of overall weight of building whereby columns which cross sections can be reduced by a nearly percentage of 40%. There is also reduction of rebar requirements. The strength of the product can bring out its greenness like in the case of Ceratech who have compressive strengths to 10,000 psi using standard mix designs with high early strengths to 2,000npsi in 6hours (CERATECH Green Sustainable Structural Building Material Technology: Driving Change through Innovative Thinking).
The use of green building construction, is of great benefit to the consumers since it is efficient in energy, water and materials, it minimizes waste and pollution and creates a better indoor environment. Designing of buildings is aimed at humanizing interior excellence of the surrounding which can bring into being benefits for workplaces and the productivity of the workers as well as the landlords. A proficient green structure can be strong enticement when giving promotion to the charter of residential or marketable space.
According to environmental protection agencies, deprived interior air quality is an environmental threat to a nation. Whereas sick building syndrome causes fatigue and illness which is brought about by poor designed ventilations and the presence of biological contaminations for instance molds, bacteria and pollens. The indoor air pollutants can be as a result of smoking of tobacco, building resources, products for beautifying, practices for clearing out, pest management, supplying, dust together with other activities such as cleaning and heating up (Stone 4).
Due to poor green construction, there is a possibility of occupants complaining of several indications such headache, irritations in the eyes, nose and exasperation of the throats, dry coughs, itchy skin, wooziness and vomiting, difficulty in concentrating, exhaustion and sensitivity to scents. Relieve from the suffering, comes about after leaving the building. T he Sick Building Syndrome reduces the efficiency of the workers which may lead to increased non-attendance.
Green construction indemnifies appropriate exposure to air, condensed particulate substance and substitutes to pollution of chemical as long as preservation and modifying activities work in performance with the intention of the established green materials and systems when the construction took place (Stone 4). The elements of design of a construction play an important role in eradicating interior contaminants. Therefore, there is an importance of integrating permanent entryway features for example grills or grates which will be used to capture dirt and particulate substance at all entryways with heavy traffic.
The buildings should also include controls of tenants for airflow, temperature and lightning. The possible options have to include task lighting, operable windows and under-floor heating, aeration (ventilation) and air habituation (HVAC) arrangements with personal diffusers. There should be a possibility of the proposal of the building maximizing the quantity of proscribed daylight that can reach interior regions which are occupied. The prohibited day lighting involves reflective exteriors and disseminating elements which enable sunshine diffusion while taking control of frown.
Additionally, light sensors should be installed to supplement the total amount of sunshine to supply desirable lighting levels for the necessary errands (Lippiatt 37-45). The relative greenness of a product can be evaluated from scrutinizing the construction resources, supplying, and other products such as air fresheners, clearing products and pesticides which in the end result can discharge contaminants more or less incessantly. Therefore, there is a proposal of Formaldehyde-free materials for floor covering, furniture, fortifications and upper limits, lagging and finishes, sub-flooring and en suite breakfronts.
Preferably all the bonding agents and paints should not have any fillings of Volatile Organic Content (VOC) but instead ordinary and water-based coverings should be used. Low and no-discharge grounds and flooring finishes, natural coverings of the floor are of greatly preferred to conventional carpeting (Stone 5). An observation from United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) the financial benefits of residential green building, there is a production of $200-$400 in annual savings in energy from the houses which are built to Energy Star.
This are all on heating, cooling and water heater related costs. The durability of the green home construction interprets to additional savings on the preservations over the existence of a home (Internal Revenue Service Treasury and IRS Provide Guidance on Energy Credit to Home Builders). There is an important role which is played by the counties in educating the residents and builders of homes, about saving energy and obtainable refunds, recognitions and other funding support for green structure and projects for home development (Weitz et al. 5810-5849).
The counties can give an action of Clearinghouse of information for builders and confidential citizens who have an interest of capitalizing on the benefits of investments of their green building schemes. The incentives of finance in order to build green, come in different forms including credits from taxes, for individual taxpayers, accelerating process of giving permission for homebuilders and rebates from both power and water companies for doing the setting up of resource competent attributes in a residence (Roodman et al A Building Revolution: How Ecology and Health Concerns are Transforming Construction).
The available incentives and rebate programs available to landlords and homebuilders include the Federal Energy Policy Act Tax Incentives whereby this act of Federal Energy Policy Act 2005, presents the inducements of tax for both acquiring and installing competent energy productions in building. This proceed comprises of credits to builders and customers for green structure schemes, enhancements of energy economy home and solar energy organizations (Internal Revenue Service Treasury and IRS Provide Guidance on Energy Credit to Home Builders).
On the national Ratings Certifications and Standards, the recognized national ratings, standards systems and certifications of green building can be exceptional gear for regions for employment when coming up with own residential curriculums for green building. There can be customization of national programs in accordance to the differences of the region while giving provision of approval framework on which counties can come up with their own advancement of green building.
Therefore there is a widespread network which has provided allowance to the national programs to bring together case studies and al1 the best information practices from all through the U. S (EIA Analysis of 10% renewable Portfolio Standard). There are a number of green building ratings, certifications and standard programs which are countrywide well known and may be given a priority to come up with programs of green building.
They include, LEED for homes which is a USGBC with a mission of advancing the revolution of the market of the environment which is constructs, increases and supervises the LEED for the rating systems of homes which were put into action in 2005 and gave provision to a tool for certifying homes that are given a design in order to be energy, water and efficient of resources and built with the health of future occupants being considered.
There is also the Centre for Communities by Design whereby the American Institute of Architects (AIA) Centre for Communities by Design does provide support to the societies on sustainable planning through its curriculum of Sustainable Design Assistance Team. SDAT’s undertaking is to provide methodological support in order to hold up communities come up with the vision and the construction for a sustainable future (EIA Analysis of 10% renewable Portfolio Standard). Conclusion The discussion in the paper was based on the green building products and their sustainability of Construction.
It seems that, in many cases, the best alternative of a design for interior surrounding quality gives a determination on the excellence of the general atmosphere. Therefore the elimination of air contamination in the indoor will be determined by the durability of the building material which will hence need lower quantities and less toxic chemicals for the maintenance and renovation (Levin Best Sustainable Indoor Air Quality Practices in Commercial Buildings). The paper focused on the implementation and exploration of the green products for construction.
There is also the evaluation of the greenness of construction materials which can be evaluated in different ways including valuing the durability, stability, strength and speed of the materials (Levin Building Design and Material Selection). The greenness of products is judged from the way a product or a material reduces its demand for landfills especially the cement company Ceratech in the U. S which makes use of recycled fly ash to manufacture Redimax cement. There are also energy policy acts which are featured on the paper which focus on means of saving the energy (EIA Analysis of 10% renewable Portfolio Standard).