Sustainable building is all about the practice of creating a healthy environment based entirely on ecological principles, as it helps promote healthier living by reducing waste and boosting the economy, while also promoting sustainability. For a healthier life, there is an urgent need for clean and fresh air, including a not-so-toxic environment and abundant natural resources, leading this construction industry to be the leading avenue for everything more towards a greener edge.
As the world faces the greatest challenges related to climate change, new designs and the use of versatile products with the principles of green building can result in minimal impact on the ecosystem or the environment, as the end result of adopting green building is green building is connected buildings that lead to greener alternatives. In an interview with HT Lifestyle, Ayan Nagpal, co-founder of Agrocorp Landbase (P) Ltd, shared that building a sustainable future through green building is based on six principles – conserve, reuse, protect, innovate, recycle and let rest non-toxic and from high quality.
According to Saurabh Jain, CEO, India Operations at LivSpace, the terms green, sustainable and eco-friendly are used colloquially in today’s world, but the terms are not entirely synonymous. Green and eco-friendly means something doesn’t harm the planet, while office sustainability puts the focus on the future. He revealed: “Sustainable office interiors help to minimize the negative impact on the environment and with the changing scenario, more and more workplaces are emphasizing the inclusion of sustainable constructions and interiors.”
He emphasized: “The hidden secret of intelligent office furniture lies in its sustainability. The choices made when choosing the components used for the interior design make all the difference. Using materials that may look nice but may not be durable or can fall apart overnight will serve no purpose for an office in the long run. In addition, the cost-effectiveness of a fully-fledged sustainable interior increases the benefit of using recyclable materials in office furniture, flooring and lighting.”
Tips for sustainable building
Ayan Nagpal said: “The things that are of the highest priority when it comes to sustainable building are the materials used, the methods used, sustainable building or green building with plans for using solar energy and installing insulation, the importance of 3Rs, ie reuse, reduce and recycle.” He claimed that sustainable building is the answer for anyone looking for energy and resource efficient materials with a positive impact on the environment. He suggested some methods that can achieve sustainable construction by considering renewable and recyclable materials while building new structures, leading to a reduction in energy consumption and waste. These methods are:
● sustainable procurement of resources
● Solar energy
● The Green Insulation eliminates the urgent need for high quality products made from non-renewable materials.
● biodegradable materials, etc.
Saurabh Jain recommended that a few simple but achievable decisions about office furnishings and essentials can transform a regular workplace into a highly sustainable one. He advised:
1. Use materials that let the environment breathe – A good starting point for offices could be the introduction of sustainable furniture. Multipurpose office furniture is a way to reduce furnishing needs and create flexible workspaces. Another small but significant opportunity is to incorporate eco-friendly office supplies and potentially enact a zero-paper policy. Adding lots of houseplants in and around the office workspace contributes to healthy air quality. In addition, plants and greenery are also directly linked to the psychological well-being of employees and are known to relatively reduce stress and tension.
2. Make energy efficiency a priority – Environmentally friendly improvements to an office design not only have a lasting impact on employee well-being and productivity, but also on energy costs. Sustainable offices are more pleasant to work in, have better air quality and use less energy compared to offices that have not made green office improvements.
3. Rethink unused space to create a sustainable office space – A number of offices and workspaces have space that is underutilized or completely unused, but they may still consume electricity by heating and cooling spaces. This not only increases energy costs, but also pollutes the environment. Steps need to be taken to either utilize these spaces or reconfigure the office layout. Recycling, reusing and repurposing existing office supplies helps protect the environment and ensures there is minimal to no waste.