True sustainability in construction accounts for the lifetime of an asset, so understanding what we can do as general contractors to protect our client’s building is critical.
Sustainable construction involves using renewable and recyclable materials on building projects to reduce energy consumption and toxic waste. The primary goal of this initiative is to reduce the environmental impact of construction by utilizing sustainable development practices, employing energy efficiency, and taking advantage of green technologies where possible. Technological advancements have paved the way for a new generation of more robust, lighter, and renewable building materials which can help push traditional practices to become more environmentally friendly.
These ecological materials also help promote a cleaner Earth by reducing the carbon footprint of the buildings that utilize these elements. They have the same purpose as their non-renewable counterparts while also aesthetically pleasing and much more efficient.
While renewable materials are a major element to sustainable construction, implementing construction methods that enhance sustainable efforts are just as important. Some of these methods include:
- Limiting the materials used to reduce waste
- Controlling waste management- such as separating and recycling waste
- Adaptive reuse projects that transform old buildings
- Managing construction sites to improve conservation efforts. Examples include treating water on-site, no smoking, recycling food containers, etc.
- Conserving energy
- Choosing sustainable and recycled materials
In any case, sustainable options will offer greater value over time. Decreased energy and water usage equals lower utility bills. Green buildings benefit from lower annual operating costs and command higher rent and building values than non-green buildings. Green and sustainable buildings typically have better indoor air quality, better natural lighting and are constructed with building materials and products that contain less pollutants and volatile organic compounds.
Cox & Company understands that there is a constant requirement for improvement on sustainable practices. To reduce our environmental impact, we are committed to the following:
- Work with our staff, subcontractors, and clients to make all our building’s operations as environmentally friendly as we can
- Reduce waste created and where possible to reuse and recycle before responsible disposal of surplus materials; to use recycled and recyclable materials wherever possible
- Analyze how people travel to and from our sites: encouraging shared vehicles, public transport and cycling to work where possible
- Review what we buy – sourcing goods with low environmental impact and working with local suppliers wherever possible
- Manage and reduce water consumption
- Reduce our carbon footprint through energy conservation and to switch to low-carbon fuel alternatives where possible
The choices we make today will have an impact on the environment in the future. At Cox & Company, we continue to incorporate and seek alternative sustainable building processes and practices, ensuring that our buildings not only meet our client’s current needs but the needs of the future.