The term “green buildings” can be used to describe any building or facility that meets certain environmental standards and is environmentally friendly. This is not just a label on a building or facility; it encompasses a variety of building processes, including construction, energy use, water usage, waste management, and construction materials. The purpose of these buildings and facilities is to help the environment by reducing greenhouse gases, reducing toxic waste, and increasing energy efficiency.
A lot of research has been done in recent years to determine the amount of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases released into the atmosphere from construction of these green buildings and facilities. Scientists have found that construction using sustainable materials such as wood, bamboo, or reclaimed wood produces less greenhouse gases than building with non-biodegradable materials such as concrete, asphalt, or concrete blocks. In addition to helping the environment, buildings and facilities that contain more sustainable materials also offer other advantages for building science and medicine.
The best parts about the development of green buildings is that they offer human health benefits as well. When construction sites are located near plants that grow vegetables and fruits, they are better able to use these foods for human consumption. This is because construction materials such as recycled wood and bamboo reduce the amount of chemicals and pesticides that are used in food production, and that are then added to local water supplies.
Another advantage of constructing and using green buildings is that they can greatly benefit the human health of those who live in the surrounding communities near the site. For example, studies have shown that residents living near an organic dairy farm are less likely to develop osteoporosis than residents living near a meat production facility. Similarly, studies have shown that residents living near a natural gas power plant are much less likely to develop lung disease and to suffer from asthma than residents living near a coal-fired power plant.
Another great thing about the development of green buildings is that it has been proven that they can dramatically benefit the overall performance of any business or institution that employs individuals. A study conducted by a business consulting firm found that a high percentage of companies within the health care industry were turning to green buildings instead of traditional methods of energy use. These businesses claimed a ten percent increase in revenue from the sale of the products or services they provided as well as a forty-two percent decrease in energy consumption. Additionally, the companies noted a decrease in their expenditures on energy.
Although these buildings are often expensive, they can also be significantly less costly to operate. A study done by the Environmental Protection Agency found that the average cost of building a single solar panel is between twenty and thirty-nine cents per watt of electricity, while a standard two-story building would cost about twenty-five cents per watt. The solar panels can be installed at no additional cost and will last for many years.