Green is possible. Green alternatives in the construction sector seem to be the answer for the future in many countries such as: Japan, Singapore, Switzerland, United States, Germany, India and Austria. These countries are noted for their new ways to apply Corporate Social Responsibility in the construction sector. For the company Construcciones Yamaro, in Venezuela, for example, an architectural alternative for the planet has much to do with resources, energy and water consumption savings and improvements in the communities.
How to help the environment? The construction is an activity with high level of impact to the planet. The damage caused by industry is generating numerous problems for several years, as it getting bigger and present because of the continued growth of the population and the consequent need for habitat.
Corporate Social Responsibility considers reducing the impact generated wherever a construction is taking part. This reduction is an implicit need within the construction sector. Home, business and community constructions and buildings of the future are profiled to be developed with friendly materials to the environment. These buildings seek to increase the electrical efficiency and reduce the environmental cost, while considering cost reduction.
Construcciones Yamaro. For Armando Iachini, CEO of Construcciones Yamaro, it is important always to be aware of the environmental impact of the construction works in the country and he knows how to minimize it at a maximum point. There are more sustainable materials than others in the construction sector. For example, wood is one of them because of their characteristic of reuse, recycling and renewal. A very good characteristic of this material is that once it is used, it can become biomass or it can be used to build agglomerate.
Green buildings are built according to bioclimatic guidelines that will achieve between 50% and 80% energy savings compared to conventional buildings. They should use fluorescent bulbs, use of solar panels to generate clean energy and hot water, use best crystals to regulate temperature and reduce the use of heaters and air conditioners.
Cost reduction: LEED. The so called “green” architecture creates a problem that is being solved. Reducing energy costs of construction of a sustainable building also causes an increase in margins of primary investment translated to a 10% to 15% in the construction budget, compared to a conventional building.
LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) is a system of standardization for eco-friendly construction works, which dictates the standards to consider a building as “green”. LEED certification is a method that evaluates buildings and communities through objective design guidelines and measurable parameters. Environmental performance includes:
- energy efficiency,
- indoor environmental quality,
- materials selection,
- sustainable site development,
- water savings.
The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certification categorizes a building in one of the five standards mentioned before, among which include: Sustainable Sites (SS) Water Saving (WE), Energy and Atmosphere (EA), Materials and Resources (MR) and Environmental Quality interiors (IEQ). Innovation Design (ID) is an additional category that studies how the construction was handled as well as the design measures not covered in the other four categories. Therefore, construction companies have four levels of accreditation to consider:
- Regional Certification (40-49 points),
- Silver (50-59 points),
- Gold (60-70 points),
- Platinum (80 or more points).