A sustainable house makes effective use of resources and the energy available to the site by
- Collecting rain that falls, to be used efficiently throughout the house and garden.
- Using the sun to warm the house in the winter, heat water and generate power.
- Channelling the prevailing breezes to cool in summer.
- Taking advantage of the mass of the earth on which it sits to maintain a regular temperature.
- Recycling its own waste.
- Using the land to provide native habitat and human nourishment.
A sustainable house should compliment the environment and utilise the many free gifts available. When you create a sustainable house for green living, you are creating a house that is healthy, light and inviting.
Most of all, your sustainable green living house should be a beautiful place to live.
Housing is responsible for 1/5 of all carbon emissions globally.
Take a look at where the most energy is used in a typical house.
- Heating & Cooling – 54%
- Water Heating – 18%
- Washing Clothes – 3%
- Cooking – 4%
- Refrigeration – 4%
- Lighting – 6%
- Electronics – 6%
- Others – 5%
You need to make sure to concentrate your efforts and investment in the area’s responsible for the highest energy usage which is heating and cooling. This is where the biggest impact can be made.
The most effective way to make a sustainable home is to design it for green living. Once it is built your options can be limited. However, that doesn’t mean you need to keep wasting energy. The infographic below lists some free tips and some that require investment. They all help save energy and money.
More Useful Tools
- Australia – Household electricity calculator (VicGov)
- Australia – Guide to Sustainable Housing (Aus Gov)
- UK – Home Energy Check (Energy Saving Trust)
- USA – Appliance electricity calculator (Energy.gov)
A home that is healthy, protects us and the environment
Of course your green living house should also be healthy. After all, if a house is dangerous for us, it is probably dangerous for the environment. There are many things to consider to ensure that the health of your family is taken care of. Here are some idea’s to help you start thinking about how to make your sustainable home healthy and green.
“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”
More Useful Tools
- Australia – The Healthy Home (gov.au)
- USA – Healthy Homes (CDC)
Healthy Habitats for Green Living
Human beings have evolved to live in sync with our natural environment
But modern living is moving us further away from this natural habitat, to the detriment of the environment and our health. Some of us are fortunate enough to have a house with land. Whilst others may share an apartment with limited access to nature. Regardless of where you live, there are many ways you can ‘re-wild’ your life and improve the health of the environment and you.
- Healthy Indoor Plants (Mother Nature Network)
- First Time Gardener (Mother Nature Network)