Thursday, 4 July 2013

GREEN HOMES IN INDIA

 



GREEN HOMES



For the modern home owner, the pressure to implement green sustainable systems and source eco-friendly green products and services is overwhelming. Between the growing bodies of government regulations, public concern for environmental / green issues and rising expense of raw materials and energy, the grounds for owners to go for “Green” homes is compelling.

What we do
We demystify the understanding and implementation of Green Homes.

- Design and Architectural support - Green Building perspective 
- Construction, Project Management, “Green” Material Sourcing
- Solar Path Analysis – ensuring optimal use of the Sun in your home
- Fresh Air and ventilation planning  
- Water management - clean and adequate supply for years to come
- Energy Optimization – Energy planning - immediate and future needs

Plan and make a “Green” home within your budget without compromising on any of your Requirements / Comforts / Luxuries.
It all starts from the design – since ancient times we have always built keeping in mind the sun movement and the wind flow. Vaastu (without any religious connotation) is integral to all building designs.

Solutions to deal with the design
 - orientation and stilts, heat sinks etc.
More concepts and knowledge is pouring into the basin of Sustainability - which is fantastic for this critical science for sustaining 7 billion (and adding) inhabitants on mother earth. A lot of knowledge is relevant locally due to obvious geographical differences. Design has to be relevant to the times, the people, the purpose and the location.

“Sun-path analysis”
 forms the first step of planning a Green Building. An extensive computer-assisted analysis is made of how the sun will impact the proposed site/structure to enable planners/architects and Green Building professionals to harness the power and yet shield from the wrath of this magnificent power-generator. Ancient India was probably the first civilization to study this science.
No wonder Indians have the lowest rate of Vitamin D deficiency (thanks to abundant sunshine) we also have the lowest per capita incidences of Skin Cancer (thanks to our general distaste of sun-bathing)     

The green solution
Nature can hugely subsidize our comfort. Pre-cooling and free cooling are concepts that ensure lower dependence on energy to keep buildings cool. If one is able to keep a building cool by smart planning of design and materials – one can enjoy free-cooling. If one can use non-compressor based options such as air-washers, tunnel-coolers and any other non-conventional tool to cool buildings one would be less dependent on grid-generated energy and hence be Greener.   

Air-conditioning
 is a huge source of power consumption and lot of diligence is given to evolving the optimal solution. The gases used for cooling have to be eco-friendly, the choices of central vs. individual units has to be made based on local geography, usage patterns, technology choices have to be made with regards to the latest options available. This is an area which requires detailed SWOT analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats)

Waste Management
This also is a very important element of Green Homes wherein all waste is suitably recycled/disposed off with minimal impact on the environment.

Water Management
 - concept of zero discharge building – 100% water recycling - Rain water harvesting and collection pits.

With a robust growth of global population and stress on fresh water reserves there is growing need to conserve water – Drinking water and water for washing/cleaning/watering plants etc.

100% water recycling and Zero discharge buildings have become a reality. Rainwater harvesting is critical since billions of liters of fresh water (mostly pumped from underground reserves) ends-up in waste drains and rivers going into oceans thus depleting the ground-water table. Collection pits are being created in urban areas and public parks to harvest it back to the ground-water table which has fallen to incredible depths in many parts of India. 

Conservation Features- Recycle, Reuse & Recharge 
The Mantra “reduce, recycle and reuse” is importantly addressed in Green Buildings for three basic requirements – Air, Water and Fire (energy source)

For “Air” the mantra is defined as enabling Green Buildings to have uninterrupted access to fresh / clean air inside the building while generating clean air in its vicinity (while being constructed or later when the building is being used by its occupants)   The idea is simply to innovatively use design, technology, construction practices and when occupied, sustainable practices to ensure fresh / clean air inside and outside the building.

Similarly for “Water” the mantra in Green Buildings is to have uninterrupted access to fresh / clean water inside the building while generating lowest possible levels of waste water. The waste water, if any, is used in the buildings vicinity for purposes of greening the areas inside and outside. Again, the idea is to innovatively use design, technology, construction practices and when occupied, sustainable practices to ensure fresh / clean water inside and outside the building. To lower dependence on the ground-water table and/or any other municipal source of water.

“Water” management in Green Buildings is critical. Green Buildings ensure that they have uninterrupted access to fresh / clean water for drinking and grey water for Bathrooms and facility management. While great attention to detail is given to ensure that the waste water generated is treated, reused and disposed-off judiciously. The waste water, if any, is used in the buildings’ vicinity for purposes of greening the areas inside and outside. Care is taken to ensure low dependence on the ground-water table and/or any other municipal source of water.

“Natural Light” is used extensively for lighting majority of the building during daylight hours. During non daylight-hours lighting is provided by low-consumption eco friendly lighting by LED lights, CFL bulbs, Solar generated power-backed lighting.
 
  

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