Ways to Greening your Home or Office

The City of Melbourne has documented a “Greening Your Building – A Toolkit for Improving Asset Performance” as a guideline for a number of environmental opportunities for building owners and facility managers to use in managing their building.

The topics for improving buildings are categorised in one of the following:

  • General
  • Cleaning
  • Domestic Hot water
  • Electrical
  • Energy Conservation
  • External
  • Fire
  • Heating Ventilation & Air Conditioning
  • Internal Fit-out
  • Lighting
  • Office Equipment
  • Renewable Energy
  • Waste
  • Transport
  • Water

The benefits, risks, process, cost, payback and associated resources were discussed for each improvement opportunity.

Each topic was also identified as possible in one or more of the four stages: Management, Maintenance, Refurbishment Level One and Refurbishment Level Two.

Energy Efficient Home Anatomy of an Efficient Home

 

The key to reducing the energy required for a home is make the house as air-tight as possible. This would reduce the heating and cooling requirement of the house. Energy self-sufficiency can be achieved by implementing renewable technology for hot water heating and electricity generation.

An industrial building could be losing 75% of its heat through the building fabric. Improving the building fabric makes financial sense

  • Keep cool. Improving the fabric can prevent overheating — giving lower costs for ventilation and air conditioning.
  • Higher productivity. Staff morale and output can be improved by providing a more comfortable working environment by, for example, reducing draughts, solar glare, summer overheating and noise.
  • Lower capital expenditure. A more efficient, well-insulated building needs a smaller heating and cooling plant.
  • A good investment. Better insulation could increase your property’s value and attractiveness.
  • Prioritise. Draught-stripping, loft insulation and cavity wall insulation are often cost-effective.
  • Think ahead. Other measures such as double glazing don’t pay their way when considered as stand alone projects but can be cost effective and be less disruptive when considered during planned refurbishment.

Additional ideas on energy savings are:

  • Roof, walls and doors: Improving loft and cavity wall insulation is the single most cost-effective measure you can take to save money. Doors can be a major source of draughts, letting the heat flood out. Add more insulation in the roof and cavity of masonry walls. Fit automatic closers to doors.
  • Windows: Glazing loses more heat than any other part of the building fabric. Put it at the top of your list for energy savings. Eliminate draughts, double glaze windows and/or use high performance glass. Fit shades or redirect the sun.
Energy Saving Fact Sheet on Building Fabric. Source: Carbon Trust

Energy Saving Fact Sheet on Building Fabric. Source: Carbon Trust

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Source: Greening your home – Toolkit for Improving Asset Performance, City of Melbourne Victoria

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One thought on “Ways to Greening your Home or Office

  1. Pingback: Sustainable Building Materials | Energy Systems & Sustainable Living

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