How to shape the future of construction?
Discover more about the importance of green building, innovative solutions to achieve it and how you can contribute. The future of construction is here!
The concept of green and sustainable building is not new, but has never been more important. In fact, the construction sector is one of the biggest contributors to climate change and buildings are responsible for much of the world’s energy waste.
What is the definition of green building? And what are potential solutions to achieve sustainable construction?
Green building solutions
The Solar Impulse Label is granted to innovative smart and sustainable building solutions that meet high standards of sustainability and profitability.
Each solution goes through a strict assessment process performed by independent experts.
Showerdrain reclaiming heat energy from used shower water by pre-warming the fresh water before it arrives at the mixer.
Autonomous data collection and analytics solution to identify defects on buildings’ exterior façade
District Cooling Systems
Integrated chilled water production system for efficient cooling of buildings in cities
This membrane mitigates heat urban island effect and reduces summer discomfort thanks to advanced surface radiative properties.
What can you do?
What is green building?
Green building, also called sustainable building or green construction, is the concept of creating structures and processes that are environmentally responsible and resource-efficient throughout a building's life-cycle from siting to design, construction, operation, maintenance, renovation and deconstruction.
Its main goals are to preserve resources like raw materials, energy and water, fight against global warming (greenhouse gases emission), minimize waste and other pollutions, and maximise the whole life-cycle performance. Sustainable building also aims to bring comfort and health to occupants by the use of materials of high sanitary and environmental quality, both for the actual construction and for the insulation.
Fundamental principles are linked to green building:
- • Minimize resource consumption (energy and water efficiency)
- • Maximize resource reuse
- • Use renewable or recyclable resources
- • Protect the natural environment
- • Create a healthy, non-toxic environment
Green building technologies
The philosophy of sustainable architecture is embodied in various practices that aim to reduce the negative impact of a building on its environment and to take care of the quality of life of users and neighboring communities.
Its implementation is manifested by a set of choices of techniques, management methods, materials and the internal organization of functions and spaces, in order to control the energy consumption and the living environment of users.
Sustainable construction technologies used in green construction include:
- • Biodegradable materials
- • Solar power for heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC)
- • Green insulation and lighting, smart appliances, cool roofs
- • Sustainable resource sourcing
- • Low-energy house and zero-energy building design
- • Water efficiency technologies
- • Electrochromic smart glass
- • Self-powered buildings
Sustainable construction aims at reaching a high level of performance in terms of the environmental, economic and societal impacts of the concerned buildings:
As the priority is given to local, renewable, bio-sourced and recyclable materials, and the design is based on the use of renewable energies (geothermal, aerothermal, solar, wood) and the preservation of resources (energy and water efficiency, better insulation), the first advantage of sustainable building is the protection of the environment.
According to a World Green Building Council report, savings in a sustainable building can be very significant: from 25 to 35% energy savings, and up to 39% water savings compared to a conventional building. Besides, green building boosts the real estate market and allows to reduce operating costs.
Green buildings help improve the quality of life, by enhancing occupants’ health, well-being and comfort (thermal and acoustic insulation, better energy and lighting management). Moreover, it minimizes strain on local infrastructure.
Green building challenges
The higher initial design and construction costs are considered as hurdles for green building projects, even though they are profitable in the long term. This is actually the top challenge to realizing high-performance buildings.
2.Lack of public awareness / political support
Lack of public awareness is still among the main obstacles in developing the green building market, especially in emerging countries. Little political support can be another challenge for the development of green building and sustainable cities.
A challenge, #1000 Solutions to change the world
For the first time a label proves the economic profitability of solutions that protect the environment. The Solar Impulse Foundation is selecting 1,000 solutions that protect the environment in a profitable way and awarding them the Solar Impulse Efficient Solutions Label.
Collaborating with independent experts and with renowned institutions, the World Alliance proposes to evaluate its members solutions free of charge.
The Solar Impulse Efficient Solutions label will offer a competitive edge to innovators and a guarantee of quality to solution seekers.