Green construction is the future but can we adapt quickly enough?
Facts like the ones below are showing the urgent need for change in the way in which construction operates:
- Buildings create nearly half of total carbon emissions in the UK.
- Housing alone generates 27% of UK emissions.
- About 10% of UK emissions come from the manufacture and transport of construction materials and the construction process.
Green Construction: Niche Markets Make it More Challenging to Change
Living sustainably was originally associated with those who had more money to spend on what was considered luxuries. However in recent years ,the importance of green technologies are appearing on the radar of the public sector and are becoming a requirement, yet current budgets don’t match ones that are currently needed for sustainable technologies.
Cost is a big factor for businesses and the main stream methods are obviously a lot more cost effective; although not effective for the environment. Essentially, green living has become a niche which has driven the cost up.
If the governments are committed to slashing carbon emissions by more than a 1/3 by 20/20 then, this niche will have to become a main stream requirement that’s enforced by legislation. The UK faces pressure as the EU demands we meet their 15% target of energy coming from renewable sources by 20/20.
It’s apparent that all industries including construction are figuring out new ways of doing things. Although if you think about how we’re only accessing 40% of Europe’s wind farms which provides only 0.5% of our electricity requirements; it’s clear that we have a long road ahead of us.
Do we have time on our side?
It’s vital that the construction industry acts now and adapts as energy efficient solutions will become the integral part of our future. The specific solutions are not clear right now but it is about education, support and a positive attitude to a new way of living.