Energy efficient construction trends

Energy efficient construction trends

April 22 was Earth Day, which got us thinking about energy efficiency and some of the biggest energy efficient trends that are making their way into construction. Having an energy efficient building is becoming not just a trend, but a requirement for some businesses and companies. These are just a few of the trends that we have noticed in projects around the country.

Solar Powered – Solar energy is a trend that is continuing to grow in popularity. It is popular because not only is it sustainable, it is renewable. It is a generally natural source of power that requires minimal maintenance.

Water Awareness – The need to conserve water is not restricted to desert climates. More and more property and business owners are turning to water preservation features due to reduced rainfall and dwindling freshwater reserves. Some water preservation methods include automatic sinks and toilets in bathrooms, and automatic sinks in businesses that have kitchens.

Working on the Cloud – Designing and managing projects in cloud-based technology has ben steadily increasing to help cut down on paper waste.

Smart Buildings – Creating a smart building helps aid in energy efficiency of the building. Smart buildings are constantly connected, provide data monitoring, and are accessible remotely, giving owners the ability to easily control them. This cuts down on water usage, light usage, and other forms of power usage, such as heating and cooling, resulting in significant energy savings.

LEED Certification – A 2011 study of the U.S. General Services Administration’s LEED-certified buildings showed that LEED-certified buildings save up to 25 percent of energy, compared to the national average. Operational costs are reduced by 19 percent and LEED Gold buildings were particularly high performers according to the Department of Energy. (Source: USGBC)

There are many ways to keep your building operating green well after it’s been built. Here are just a few ideas:

  • Turn off lights in rooms that aren’t being used.
  • Put plenty of recycling bins around the office to encourage employees to recycle.
  • Replace your office’s kitchen paper plates and cups with real dishes and encourage staff members to wash their dishes instead of creating more waste by using Styrofoam, etc.

Dean Kurtz Construction works with business owners and general contractors to ensure that buildings are running as efficiently as possible when they are being built. Give us a call with any questions on how to build a green and environmentally friendly building.