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Reap Maximum Benefits by Embracing Green Living

Monday, February 05, 2018
By Aditya Kedia

Aditya Kedia, MD, Transcon Developers

After the grave effect that the Delhi air pollution left on the health of the citizens, green living can no longer be considered as a fad or part of luxe living. If there is any lack of sensitivity towards “Mother Nature” today, going forward, we will have to be prepared to encounter serious repercussions. By consciously opting for sustainable living, we work towards improving air quality, water quality, reducing solid waste and conserving natural resources and these with a good return on investment.

A few years back, green solutions in realty was considered optional and was discouraged owing to the costs involved. But the truth is, in the long run, these costs are insignificant to the benefits reaped by the investors. According to a recent IFC report, India will be offering a green potential of $3 trillion by 2030. With drastic climatic changes and shooting energy prices, green investment is the perfect investment as compared to traditional projects that promote unsustainable living.

Green Buildings can be explained as those whose sole intention is to reduce the risk impact on the environment by following procedures like energy conservation, recycled utility consumption and use of environment friendly construction technique and materials. But it doesn’t stop here. Green projects ideally go hand in hand with smart living and the smart cities that are encouraged by our government- focus on high standards of living while taking care of health and energy conservation.  So, this is not just a project, but a complete thought process that has to be imbibed in the system and has to be believed on.

Features in a green building include:
Location:

As usual, choosing central location is vital for green projects. Easy mobility to desired places and connectivity from a central location will ensure that not many resources are spent in traveling and thereby help in reducing pollution.

Site Planning:
Next is the way you plan your projects- proper air ventilation and light ventilation aids in minimizing of electricity and maximizing the idea of going green. Also, before construction, care should be taken to remove the fertile pan of land properly and saved. This can be later used for gardening and landscaping purposes and the top soil- the richest part of the soil is conserved.

Innovation:  
While building green projects, one can go about electricity conservation by focusing on green technologies like solar panels, where in our projects, the electricity generated is returned to MSEB, which is adjusted with the total units of electricity spent in the project.  This leads to huge cost savings, thus benefiting customers. Measures like use of heat pump where luke warm water is supplied to all flats ensure the minimized use of electric geysers. Motion sensor-based lightings in car parking areas and staircases further aid in electricity savings.  Additionally, use of electricity generating elevators help save electricity and thus costs associated.  Also, with the government heavily supporting electric cars and leading automobile manufacturers already set on work in launching electric cars in the country, providing charging options for these cars are being worked on in new residential projects.

Water Conservation:
With water availability increasingly becoming a challenge, rain water harvesting is made mandatory. Industry reports suggest that these fulfill around 50% of the water needs of a family. Harnessed rainwater can be used for an array of non-drinking functions like gardening, car wash, swimming pools among others which also end up using huge volumes of water. Owing to this replacement of traditional water supply with rainwater, there is month on month savings on water bill, resulting in reduced utility bills.  This is also a fitting solution to housing societies that call for water tankers in times of scanty rainfall.  Additionally, implementation of fixtures and fittings reduce the daily consumption of water significantly.

Use of Environment Friendly Construction Materials:  
Developers who are focused on green projects select construction materials that help in regulating temperature. Use of paints and adhesives having low Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC), minimize health hazards associated by the fumes of the paints.  Use of IGBC certified Fly Ash materials is recommended as they are green, light weight and very strong. Additionally, developers also use building façade and fenestration having increased insulation properties that reduces building energy demand. Use of excellent reflective roof coating aids in minimizing the heat gains in the building, thus helping in maintaining a perfect temperature.

Waste Disposal:
Dumping during and post construction is crucial. Waste, water and sewage should be properly segregated and whatever can be recycled should be used and whatever not should be sent to agencies that dispose them safely.

The Greater Benefits of Green Investment
Although, the initial investment in green homes is on the higher side as compared to traditional homes owing to the construction material used, in the long run, the savings are substantial. Industry reports point that projects that are LEED certified achieve a greater price premium as compared to traditional projects or non-green projects. With people increasingly having an inclination towards sustainable living, these projects command higher rentals. Finally, the reduction in utility expenses in terms of energy, electricity and water lead to low occupancy costs for the investors.

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