What genuine green homes are all about
Pune’s ‘green living’ housing projects have been the most effective response to the need for sustainable homes for our future. Green residential projects are not just limited to being a trend anymore – they are rapidly becoming the new standard for healthy and responsible living. Facilitating a better and cleaner lifestyle, these green projects bring with them aspects like sustainable design, scientific construction and energy-efficient operations. Green homes also achieve optimum energy efficiency, and therefore savings.
A genuine green living residential project is characterized by site sensitivity, energy efficiency, water efficiency and environmental friendliness.
What is site responsiveness?
In simple terms, site responsiveness in a green residential project means that the fertility of the soil in the construction area has been properly preserved, and in fact put to work in the landscaping/beautification process. This responsiveness is also measured by the number of native trees that have been planted to ensure that the landscape is perfectly balanced with its surroundings.
Also, green homes projects will often integrate reflective finishes on all exposed surfaces in order to minimize the amount of heat entering the indoor premises. Aimed at reducing the harmful ‘heat island effect’, this reduces the cost of insulation required in individual homes to a great extent. Site responsiveness will further include project designs that reduce the need for vehicle usage. When all basic amenities are within walking distance, personal vehicles will only be used for longer transportation.
Many green residences are also equipped with charging facilities in the parking area. This encourages the use of electric cars – an effective alternative to vehicle emissions.
Energy efficiency in green homes projects
In India, plumbing, electric systems and air conditioning in green homes will strictly abide by the National Energy Consumption Codes. A genuine green project will never use chemicals such as HCFC and CFC in air conditioning and cooling. Insulating the walls, ceilings and all exposed surfaces with reflective finished keeps the homes cooler, thus saving energy usage.
Energy efficiency can also be achieved by using photovoltaic cells and solar energy, as non-polluting alternatives to backup generators.
Rainwater harvesting – promoting water efficiency in Pune’s hour of need
In a city like Pune, deficient monsoons play havoc with the city’s ability to cater to its citizens’ annual water requirements. Rainwater harvesting systems are an acknowledged answer to this problem – a solution which citizens can actively promote by choosing green homes equipped with adequate water harvesting. Water harvesting systems fitted to the roof of buildings provide the water used in gardening, project maintenance and sanitation, and result in reduced water usage and water bills. Further, every residential unit in a genuine green homes project needs to be fitted with water-efficient flow fittings and flushes.
Environment friendly construction
The protocols involved in rendering a green homes project environmentally friendly begin at the construction stage itself. They include using up all of the construction material on site and not depending on landfills to dump construction waste. Construction of genuinely green buildings will also involve using recycled materials wherever possible. Throughout the process, all forms of inorganic waste are collected and treated separately.
One of the most outstanding examples of eco-friendly construction is seen in Aluform – a versatile construction technology that involves recyclable and reusable materials, and results in durable and highly sustainable buildings. The wood panels customarily used in construction can be used only about 25 times before they must be scrapped. However, the aluminum panels used in Aluform construction have a usage cycle of as much as 200 times. The Aluform construction process is a major leap forward in sustainable construction, and is being increasingly used by reputed developers in cities like Pune.
Sustainable and green living is about coexisting in harmony with elements that created us. The investment that both developers and home buyers make into this cause is completely worth it, as it promotes healthier and more responsible living and also incrementally increases the planet’s ability to accommodate human habitation.