why green design?
We are all aware that the Earth and its species face critical environmental issues this decade and many more to come. Human beings have had and continue to have a profound effect on the globe. We use an enormous amount of natural resources and continue to use more.
Buildings and the building industry account for a vast amount of these resources. In the United States alone, buildings account for:
- 65% of electricity consumption,
- 36% of energy use,
- 30% of greenhouse gas emissions,
- 30% of raw materials use,
- 30% of waste output (136 million tons annually), and
- 12% of potable water consumption.
Not to mention the impact buildings have on our health and well-being. The EPA indicates that we spend 90% of our time indoors.
This is an extraordinary opportunity for those in the building industry and those planning on building or remodeling. Imagine the impact we can make on electricity consumption if we capture the sun’s energy and convert this energy. Plants do it very efficiently. Imagine if we captured the water from our roof and used it to water our garden. Imagine if we learned to use rapidly renewable resources (bamboo takes 10 years to reach maturity, a redwood takes 200 years). Imagine if we learned how to live in abundance, while cherishing our most valuable resources: our air, water, plants, animals, and humans.