In the 21st century, climate change is one of the most pressing issues facing the planet. Because of this, many people are choosing to live their lives in greener ways, from cycling to work instead of driving to recycling as much as possible. But when you want to build an extension on to your home, is this always going to be a problem for the planet, or are there ways that you can make the construction project a greener one?
If you want a bigger home and want to keep the project as environmentally friendly as possible, here are some things to keep in mind.
Materials are everything. The core of any building project is the materials that you use, and it's really important to know where your materials come from and how sustainable they are. Say, for example, that you want to build a conservatory with wood. You should ideally source that wood from a company that specialises in reclaimed woods to ensure that trees aren't being cut down for your home. That company should also be local to your house so that the carbon emitted in transportation is minimised.
Insulation is key. If you are anything like a typical Australian family, you are probably alarmed at how much money you spend cooling your house in the summer and heating it in the winter. All of this consumes valuable resources, so it's a very good idea to consider insulation in the design stages of your home extension. Solar film attached to your windows can be a good solution for this. It is relatively inexpensive and keeps the harmful glare of UV rays outside of your home as well as being a good insulator.
Generate your own power. With a totally new building project, it's easier to integrate forms of power generation, because you can do so early on in the design stages of your construction project. For example, you could plan to place solar powers on the roof of your extension, and link this to a heating system. You could also use photovoltaic slates on your roof, which can generate electricity not just for your extension, but for your whole home. These are perfect for the bright and sunny conditions of Australia.
If you are really serious about ensuring your extension is green, you should also look into specialist eco-friendly construction companies that will be able to recommend materials and processes that are kind to the environment.