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Environmentally Responsible Construction

An environmentally responsible remodel embodies a "whole-house" approach
to create buildings that:

  • Not only use less energy and less water,
  • Are durable and easy to maintain,
  • And are healthier, safer, and more comfortable—
  • But also use resource-efficient techniques and sustainable materials,
  • And are integrated into the site and wider community as much as possible

Environmentally responsible construction begins with good design, competent construction
, and regular, preventive maintenance.  But it is more than just energy efficiency-oriented construction
. It gives much greater consideration to the specific materials used and the construction techniques and processes. 

What chemicals are included in a given product that is proposed for use? Are any of the chemicals toxic? Are they safe? Are their effects known? Have these materials been in use for a long time, and are generally regarded as safe? There are numerous chemical constituents of building materials that might cause problems for human health. These are complex issues, as the effects of many substances are not clear. But available information should be consulted.

Taking one step back from the finished house itself, it looks at what goes into the construction, how we put it there, and what we do to get it there. The "embodied energy" of a material includes the energy used to acquire the raw materials (e.g., mining), manufacture the product, as well as transporting the various inputs to the manufacturing plant and getting the finished product to the job site.

Beyond the basics of resource efficiency, safety and durability, we consider the sustainability of resources used in construction.  The more environmentally conscious our clients are, the further they want to go in selecting renewable materials, using recycled material, using locally produced materials, considering the energy used in producing and transporting the components of construction, and so forth.

Beyond that is consideration of the policies of those companies producing the components of construction and working on the job, such as how they treat their employees and how environmentally responsible they are.

However, not everybody wishes to spend the extra money that materials satisfying various of these requirements typically cost.  We can discuss the cost/benefit trade-offs involved with you so that you find the level of "green" that's right for you and your budget.


 


Money Saving Tip:

Tune up your heating and air conditioning system.
Regular maintenance can lower your operating costs and
extend the service life of your equipment. And do you
change your air filters regularly? Use a programmable
thermostat? Taking small steps such as these can
make your wallet as well as your home greener.
Get Tax Credits Now
 
 
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