What can a construction company like Group Five do for the environment?

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Currently, between 40 and 50 percent of global energy resources are used in the construction, maintenance and operation of buildings.

I propose that we turn off that light that we are not using and read about how the construction industry has organized itself to improve its impact on the ecosystem.

The Green Building Council is a global non-profit organization that promotes sustainability in building design, construction and operation.

Group Five Ltd. is one of the founding-members of the South African division. This company was awarded with the International Quality Crown in 2010 presented by Business Initiative Directions.

But, what exactly does it mean to build sustainably? When the LEED certificate was developed, some basic principles were implemented:

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As a starting point, the view lies on a good integration of the building into the space it will be built to assure that the impact on biodiversity is controlled.

Second, processes and materials are chosen with the awareness of the emissions they can produce, their toxicity and the saving on non renewable resources. Special attention is paid to water, a core element of discussion in Africa.

Regarding design, good isolation and use of natural light is promoted in order to economize energy.

Furthermore, usability of existing buildings is deeply studied. It is important to know if a building can be renovated to extend its useful life.

In general, there is an attempt to optimize cost and quality to save on maintenance and standardize quality.

These are just a few among the vast number of proposals put forward to the group. Many of them are related to the kind of building constructed.

In addition to the green impact, habitability of the building improves and economic costs are reduced. In the end, both the consumers and the planet as well as the companies end up winning.

And there’s nothing more comforting than knowing that in the XXI century, excellence is inseparable from environmental awareness.

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