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Energy Efficient Construction
Environmental Design Consulting
Green Building and Development Techniques
Energy Efficient Construction
Environmental Design Consulting
Green Building and Development Techniques
Sustainable Building Materials
Sustainable building materials consist of materials that are quickly renewable like bamboo, engineered or laminated lumber products created from waste or scraps from the milling process, reusable or reused materials like reclaimed building components, materials that have a far greater life cycle like composite decking, materials with less embodied energy and reduced petrochemical products, materials that are either made from recycled products or those that are recyclable as well as the proper use of materials in select locations to extend their lifecycles.

The use of sustainable building materials is becoming more urgent as we are quickly depleting the earths’ natural resources in the building process which consumes over 40 percent of material usage on a global scale. Thus, it is becoming more urgent that we reduce our non sustainable material usage, reuse materials from older structures being torn down, use engineered and laminated lumber as well as recycled and recyclable materials in our building process as well as reusing and renovating old structures and building homes with far greater lifecycles. In my opinion, this is the primary consideration in sustainable construction as structures with short life cycles must be torn down and replaced requiring a great deal of new materials, labor and waste as well as adding to our current landfill problems and increasing our carbon footprint. Thus, our news homes should be built to last for many generations to come. This alone would relieve a great deal of stress from our environmental impact from construction.

An example of none sustainable materials is old growth forests that are nearly depleted and thus large timbers for beams are no longer available and can only be found from reclaimed lumber sources. In addition, it takes approximately 20 years to grow pine trees large enough to harvest for structural lumber, and current construction needs are already outpacing forest growth. This problem will only get worse as the population and their housing needs continues to grow. Therefore, we must reduce the use of lumber in home construction through better designs and other building techniques and use abundant or more renewable material sources as well as create longer lasting structures.

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