Greenhouse gas emissions continue to be a concern because they have an adverse affect on the environment. While some people may continue to argue the fact, these emissions are involved with climate change. While these emissions do arise from additional sources, buildings are responsible for 38% of the total CO2 emissions within the United States.
Regular buildings are one of the country’s major consumers of natural resources. Green buildings, however, consume less energy and water than their non-green counterparts. Recent data shows that green buildings in general will consume 25% less energy and 11% less water.
The United States Environmental Protection Agency’s US Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) utilizes a series of rating systems with the express purpose of improving the environmental and health performance of building sites, structures, and neighborhoods. This includes following green practices with the design, construction, and operation of all commercial, industrial, mixed-use, and residential buildings.
More than ten years ago, LEED began to address the following building issues:
- Commercial interiors
- Tenant improvements
- Existing buildings
- Building operation
- Building maintenance
Every year, a large number of buildings are demolished and reconstructed. This amounts to one billion square feet of building space. it’s important to note that as of March 2012, 1.8 billion square feet of building spaces have been LEED-certified. In addition to new constructions, this applies to work done on existing buildings, such as additions and renovations.
When these voluntary rating systems are followed and environmentally friendly building products and are used, this makes a significant impact. on raising environmental and health standards. Green building products include environmentally friendly flooring and eco friendly paint primers and refinishing materials. It includes using low VOC bonding adhesives for flooring. A low VOC bonding adhesive can also be used for constructing cabinets and other interior furnishings. When you’re repairing floors or other interior features, remember low VOC bonding adhesives should also be used because they can cause issues for people with chemical sensitivities.
In addition to using environmentally friendly building materials, there are various changes and modifications that can be made to create a LEED-certified environment. These include ensuring that attics and their doors are properly insulated. When front, back, and side doors are weatherized, this also makes a significant difference. When other areas, such as windows, are free from cracks and holes, drafts aren’t allowed to come into the house which also improves energy efficiency. LED lighting and skylights can also be installed to reduce a residential or commercial building’s overall energy usage. Water usage can be reduced by installing dual flush toilets and sinks.
If you’re in the planning process of a home renovation or another project, consider the benefits of using LEED-certified building materials and practices. Since the goal of being LEED-certified is to create healthier and more energy-efficient homes and business establishments, this can make a difference within the entire community. You can learn more about the available products and services by contacting a LEED-certified construction and supply company.