Category Archives: GREENVICHAR

GREEN BUILDING: Learning & Locator

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What is a Green Building ?

A green building can be defined as any building that is sited, designed, constructed, operated and maintained for the health and well-being of the occupants, while minimizing impact on the environment.

A green building is a structure whose environmental responsibility and resource-efficiency spans its entire
life-cycle. It enables the efficient use of resources, protection of occupant health & improvement of productivity and reduction of waste, pollution & environment degradation.

The aim of a green building design is to

  • Minimize the demand on non-renewable resources
  • Maximize utilization efficiency of these resources when in use
  • Maximize the reuse, recycling and utilization of renewable resources

Why Green Building ?

An extensive amount of energy is consumed to heat and power our buildings. This energy is mainly generated from burning fossil fuels like oil, coal and natural gas that let out huge amounts of Carbon Dioxide (CO2), the most widespread greenhouse gas. There are also other ways in which buildings emit Greenhouse Gases (GHG), like construction debris in landfills generating methane and manufacturing of building materials causing GHG emissions.

In India, the construction sector is growing at a rate of 9%, causing a rapid rise in energy demand in urban areas where buildings alone contribute about 40% of the total GHG emissions. Hence it becomes imperative to reduce the energy use and GHG emissions produced by buildings so that the pace of global climate change has a slowdown.

Energy efficient buildings or green buildings, address the above concerns and save energy by about 40%.

Environmental benefits

  • Enhance and protect biodiversity and ecosystems
  • Improve air and water quality
  • Reduce waste streams
  • Conserve and restore natural resources

Economic benefits

  • Reduce operating costs
  • Create, expand, and shape markets for green product and services
  • Improve occupant productivity
  • Optimize life-cycle economic performance

Social benefits

  • Enhance occupant comfort and health
  • Heighten aesthetic qualities
  • Minimize strain on local infrastructure
  • Improve overall quality of life

LOCATE GREEN BUILDINGS IN INDIA HERE:

Green Building Locator

choose Green Products for green buildings

Green buildings too are constructed using a variety of materials. The only difference being that – The materials come packed with a great deal of energy-efficiency. Therefore, green buildings not only minimize the use of non-renewable resources, but also maximize the reuse, recycling and utilization of renewable resources.

The opportunities to reduce the environmental and health impacts of our homes span from big decisions, like location, to seemingly small decisions, like paint and light bulbs. The products we use to clean, light, furnish, renovate, and build our homes must be a part of the greening process. Reducing our environmental impacts requires thinking and learning about not just how we use products, but where they came from and where they’re going. Consider factors like:

  • Energy used to make, ship, and use a product;
  • The product’s contents and the sources of its raw materials;
  • Emissions during manufacturing the product and the level and type of toxins in the final product; and
  • The product’s durability (lifespan) and recyclability.

These are just some of the impacts a product has on the environment from “cradle to grave” during its “lifecycle.” The five main stages in the lifecycle of a material or product are: raw material acquisition, manufacturing, distribution, use, and end-of-life management. Attributes of a product at different stages of its lifecycle to consider may include:

Waste and materials:

  • Reduced waste
  • Biobased content
  • Recyclable or reusable components
  • Recycled-content

Energy:

  • Energy efficient
  • Low embodied energy
  • Uses renewable energy

Water:

  • Water efficient
  • Water reuse and recycling
  • Responsible stormwater management

Other environmental & health impacts:

  • Enhanced indoor environmental quality
  • Reduced environmental impact over the lifecycle
  • Reduced or eliminated toxic substances
  • Sustainable development, smart growth

Recycled-Content Building Materials

Buying recycled-content materials helps ensure that the materials collected in recycling programs will be used again in the manufacture of new products. Examples of construction materials that can be readily found with recycled content include:

  • Drywall (many utilize recycled paper and post-industrial gypsum)
  • Insulation (including cellulose, mineral wool, fiberglass, and recycled cotton insulation)
  • Plastic lumber
  • Kitchen countertops
  • Glass tiles
  • Landscaping materials
  • Carpet and carpet padding
  • Steel

All KOCHI schools to have biogas plants soon

BIOGAs Plant

All the city schools will begin a new chapter in decentralised waste management during the next academic year by installing biogas units on the campuses.

The Kochi Corporation and Suchitwa Mission have joined hands in imparting the practical lessons in waste processing in city schools.

Earlier, the local body had obtained the clearance from the State authorities for installing the plants in government schools within the city limits. It had also pushed the case of aided and unaided schools in the city as the second phase of the programme.

The other day, the State government issued administrative sanction for installing biogas plants in 54 schools in the city limits including government, aided and un-aided institutions, said T.K. Ashraf, Chairman of the Health Standing Committee of the Kochi Corporation.

The projects will be implemented with the financial support of the Suchitwa Mission.

The agenda of the Corporation Council permitting an agency to set up the units in government schools was passed during the last meeting. Though only one agency had responded to the bid for setting up the units, it was sanctioned at the meeting as the Mayor declared all the agenda passed. The Mayor resorted to passing all the agenda in one stroke as a section of the Congress councillors and LDF members staged a walk out.

The construction of the plants will begin in March when schools will close for the summer vacation. The units would be ready before June, when the educational institutions will reopen. Students will be trained in managing bio-degradable waste at their educational institutions. It would be mostly food waste that would be going into the units. The capacity of the biogas units that are to be provided to the institutions will be proportional to the student strength, he said.

The local body had earlier launched Bhoomika, an awareness programmes on waste management for school students. The students were encouraged to collect plastic refuse from their homes and store them at their schools, which would be picked up by the local body. The students were also provided incentives for the collection.

The local body had also decided to provide nine biogas units and 1,500 pipe compost units to residents of every division as part of the decentralised waste management system. The beneficiaries of these projects were selected by ward meetings. These units will be provided subsidies too, Mr. Ashraf said.

source: The Hindu

Swami Prem Parivartan – a.k.a – Peepal Baba [The Man Who Planted Trees]

Peepal Baba was born in 1966 in Chandigarh, India. Born to a medical doctor in the Indian Army, he had the opportunity to travel across the country at a young age. He fell in love with the mountains, rivers and forests at a very young age. By the age of ten he started planting trees in his neighborhood. The hobby grew into a passion soon enough.

Peepal Baba has been planting trees since January 1977. Based in Delhi, India, he travels all over the country to make efforts at spreading awareness for planting trees. He delivers talks and lectures to villagers, community gatherings, and students, institutions to create awareness towards importance of planting more and more trees.

peepal-babawww.givemetrees.org

Peepal baba has himself planted several thousand of trees. He has been a role model for many. His enthusiasm and determination has inspired many to protect and plant trees. His life is dedicated to the increase of green cover on our planet.

Today, at the age of 45, he goes about planting trees wherever he is invited. He is invited by families, institutions, communities, villages to inform them and inspire them to increase their green cover.

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Ravi Kalra: NON-HONKING man of INDIA

ravi kalra(on a warpath against increasing Noise Pollution in Delhi)

Ravi Kalra is happy to be dubbed as the No-Honking Man of India. This Delhiite, along with 100-odd volunteers, has been carrying out a ‘Do Not Honk’ campaign for the past five years to educate drivers not to honk unnecessarily and help control noise pollution.

“It is such a social menace and still people don’t understand. At traffic signals, motorists honk unnecessarily. Motorcyclists are the worst. Many countries have banned honking and India should do it too,” Kalra said.

The 44-year-old activist started his fight against honking way back in 2008.

“I was driving with my daughter, and people were honking all around at an intersection. She asked me ‘Papa! Do something!’ That was the prod I needed,” Kalra said.

He started an NGO, The Earth Saviors Foundation, and with the help of 100 volunteers carried out a drive at the Gurgaon tollgate by wiping out ‘Horn Please’ signs from the back of over one lakh commercial vehicles, he claims.

“We removed these blow-horn signs without their knowledge as these encourage honking. We are now going to schools to sensitise children against honking,” said Kalra, who has been conferred with the prestigious Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel award for selfless humanitarian service.

Volunteers of The Earth Savers Foundation go out and stick “Do Not Honk” stickers on vehicles all over the Capital.

“Our main motive is to curb noise pollution, 70% of which is because of honking. Supreme Court rulings are there but still the situation is not improving much,” Kalra added.

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