According to data from the European Union, buildings are responsible for 40% of energy consumption in the EU and 36% of greenhouse gas emissions, which tend to occur mainly during the construction, use, renovation, and demolition of sites.
The figures are disturbing enough to look for sustainable alternatives that offer housing solutions to protect the planet somehow, especially in the current wake of environmental awareness.
Green technology is in constant development with many homeowners and businesses turning to more ecological building strategies by using sustainable materials and features to help lessen their impact on the environment.
Building a sustainable home is one thing, but what if you want to modernize the place you already live in? Here are some ways to do just that:
Every time we connect an appliance, we consume electricity and generate an impact on
the environment. However, claims that technology is environmentally harmful are theories that appliance manufacturers are willing to disprove.
For this reason, some responsible brands are designing products that pollute less and represent savings on electricity bills at the same time.
Now, there are televisions, refrigerators, dishwashers, and computer screens that have been developed to be less of a threat to nature and humanity. There are eco-friendly washing machines that help reduce water pollution produced by common washers.
Some of those appliances have been designed to save time by using much shorter and efficient cycles. There are even washing machines that regulate the amount of detergent and water to be used after they go under a process of oxygenation.
Upgrade Your Materials
When performing a sustainable type of remodeling, the first thing that should be carried out is
a definition of the basic bioclimatic design strategies.
Even so, once the operation is defined at an efficiency level, the selection of materials to build or remodel a sustainable home will be one of the keys to achieving success.
You can choose to be pure environmentalists by selecting only natural and environmentally friendly materials, or you can adapt the materials according to the budget and requirements of the project.
It will always be necessary to take into account that whatever the upgrade, it should fulfill its function properly. Some common materials in sustainable construction include green flooring, solar heaters, high-efficiency insulation, and different kinds of wood.
Start Small With Minor Repairs
Although you may think otherwise, economy and sustainable development are concepts that can perfectly go hand in hand. Even with a small budget, remodeling to make a general change towards a more responsible society is quite possible.
In case you cannot afford a professional remodeling project but still want a sustainable home, you can try to be more ecological by doing some minor repairs like fixing water pipes, setting up a recycling station, and installing more eco-friendly windows or smart power strips.
Doing minor repairs yourself instead of hiring an expert, can certainly help you save money. When working on more conservative projects to increase the sustainability of your home, you can use varied ecological materials like reclaimed wood, bamboo, straw, and recycled plastic or steel, among others, as excellent alternatives to expensive timber from destroyed trees and cement or brick made out of mined resources.
Sustainable design implies thinking about what could be done to optimize or change in order to pollute less, reduce energy and resource costs, as well as evaluate how something we are building can be used in a sustainable manner.
In addition, a project´s implications at different levels of the economy in general, without forgetting its repercussions on humanity as a whole, should also be taken into consideration.
When remodeling, you can find different ways to update sustainability at home by using more renewable power, enhancing the natural light in your house to cut down on electricity usage, installing solar panels, and much more.
To maximize the efficiency and practicality of sustainable remodeling you should consult a qualified expert with the proper academic and technical knowledge to evaluate, plan and guide you in regards to the upgrades you would like for a more environmentally-friendly place to live.
Other Ways to “Go Green” at Home
One of the best ways you can be more sustainable at home is through recycling. Not only when disposing of garbage but also by reusing some elements.
You can try and unleash your creativity and you will see how recycling or reusing can become something beneficial to your home and the environment.
We could also have a more natural approach towards cleaning and everyday use objects. Even if you are not remodeling, there are other ways you can upgrade the sustainability of your home.
- Use pre-owned items instead of new ones. Modify and reuse old objects like closets and cabinets.
- Products that come in glass containers can always be turned into new drinking glasses or bowls.
- Buy eco-friendly cleaning products or make your own like mixing baking soda with vinegar.
- Get rid of paper towels to reduce paper waste.
- Wash your clothes in cold water and set them to dry in the sun to reduce energy consumption.