Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Make a Green Home

By: Michael Duggan

Making a green home can have a number of advantages for you,
your family and the environment. It can save you money on your
energy and water bills, as well as the general up keep and
maintenance of your home. A green home can also reduce your
ecological footprint by reducing your reliance on fossil fuels
and minimising the production of waste. Another reason to
building green is the improvement on your quality of life and
the health of your family. There are a huge amount of options
now available to make a green home and this article will
concentrate on five main areas for you to improve the
sustainability of your home.

The goal of making a green home is to reduce energy and water
use, save money, minimise waste, and improve the health of its
occupants. This can be achieved in many different ways, on a
range of budgets and in new and existing dwellings. One of the
best ways to achieve a green home is to start at the design
stage, before construction begins. However it is also possible
to green a home that has already been built.

Reducing your energy consumption can be achieved in a variety of
ways. The most cost effective way is also the simplest. When you
leave a room, turn the light off and when you're not using an
appliance switch it off. You can also purchase products that
have a high energy efficiency rating to further reduce your
energy use when you are using a particular appliance.
Air-conditioning and heating accounts for more than half of the
average household's energy consumption. The design and materials
used in the construction of your home can significantly reduce
the need to use mechanical heating and cooling. This will save
you money on energy bills and make your home more comfortable to
live in.

In many parts of Australia, water is a precious resource.
Minimising our use of water is very important and there are many
options available for your household to do this. Fitting water
saving devices is the easiest way to achieve water use
reductions. The purchasing of water efficient washing machines
and dish washers can further reduce your water consumption. The
installation of rainwater tanks can supply additional water
resources for flushing toilets and watering the garden. It is
also possible to reuse grey water by running it through a
treatment system. This water can then be used in the laundry and

Reductions in waste can be made at different stages of a homes
life cycle. During the construction phase, you should ask your
builder how he disposes of site waste. Encourage the reuse of
materials and the recycling of products that don't get used.

About the author:
FWR Group Pty Ltd
provide clients with
sustainability consulting
services for all facets of the
emerging sustainable development sector, including technology,
strategic planning, sustainable business and education/training

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