Building green is a powerful movement. Some of the rhetoric about sustainable living is hype and unfounded. This can obscure the benefits of green building and give the term a negative connotation.
However, technology and increased scrutiny on traditional methods have improved many areas of construction. There are four primary myths about green construction:
The Extra cost is not justified
There are some additional costs during the construction phase of building green. But the operational and maintenance cost of a green-built home are significantly less. Heating and cooling accounts for about 45 percent of a homeowner’s annual energy consumption. Homes designed with passive solar and high-efficiency windows require less energy to heat and cool; less workload on units also results in lower repair cost and a more years of service. The additional upfront cost of green construction is typically recouped within the first five years of ownership through lower maintenance and energy cost.
Green homes are less appealing
The components used in green construction are engineered to last longer and require less maintenance. Building green also involves leaving more trees on the lots and less modification to terrain. When sustainability and environmental considerations are implemented in the design of a home, the result is a more harmonious and comfortable design that blends with its surroundings.
Green equals low quality
This perspective is possibly the most deeply ingrained. Early efforts with low-flow shower heads and toilets, bamboo floors, CFL bulbs and LED lights soured consumers on the concept of green living. Designs and products continue to improve. Newer versions of these products perform better than conventional products while having less environmental impact. Conventional products get recalled and redesigned when there is a problem; the same is true of green building components.
Green construction is just a fad
The upcoming generation of homebuyers is more concerned about their carbon footprint than any previous generation. The debate over climate change continues and industry experts expect more regulatory stipulations on building materials and methods. Consumers will always be looking for ways to save on energy cost, regardless of whether the fuel is nuclear energy, coal-fired plants or natural gas. The market demand for green built homes is expected to expand over the coming years. The concept of green construction is not going away. There are many variations and approaches. Being informed of all available options and methods is the best approach to stay current with the every changing market.
Jason Kane writes about green construction and construction safety from companies like Fall Protection USA.