Sustainable Construction is on the Rise
Despite the current Administration of the United States disregarding global efforts of sustainable development throughout 2017, sustainable building will continue to trend throughout 2018 and long into the future. Individual states, cities, and businesses have persisted in moving forward in a fight for green developments in both commercial and residential structures. Many recent reports have stressed the need to continue market sustainability efforts. According to Promise Builds In Sustainable Construction, by Steve Arel on proudgreenbuilding.com, research has emphasized an expanding green market, a growing number of zero energy buildings, highlighted commercial energy storage and commercial air conditioning, as well as increased building of vertical gardens.
Arel’s article cites research that indicates the green construction market is set to rise at an annual rate of 17 percent until 2022. As consumers become more cognizant of their eco footprint, the demand rises for structures with reduced energy use, lower maintenance, lower operating costs and lower water requirements. Along with the increased production of green homes, the green building market has continued to form partnerships with manufacturers to develop energy efficient materials that serve to reduce waste and create a more sustainable and eco friendly construction industry.
Concurrently, the green building industry will see a rise in the application of energy management systems, which are used to monitor building energy usage. With these changes and the continued trend of global acceptance of solar energy, prices for solar technology are expected to continue to drop.
Following the green market trend, the zero-energy building market continues to gain momentum at an annual growth rate of about 39 percent. The energy efficient buildings are gaining global approval as they only consume as much energy as they create. The demand for zero-energy buildings has increased, in part, due to the rapid usage of fossil fuels and the depletion of resources available.
Commercial energy storage has gained popularity as the installation of solar arrays and wind farms have become more prevalent over the last decade. This is attributed to technological improvements and lowered costs that have generated increased power output. The International Energy Association cites average annual global renewable installations to soon be about 80 percent higher than coal, oil and natural gas combined through 2040. Additionally, Navigant Research suggests solar and wind PV installations will surpass 1,500 gigawatts collectively through 2026.
At an annual growth rate of almost 5 percent, the commercial air conditioner market is driven by green building efforts, demand for improved air quality and reduced operating costs. Another contributor to the anticipated growth is increased commercial construction in developing economies. Rapid urbanization has led to increases in construction of commercial buildings, shopping centers, hospitals, and manufacturing facilities.
Along with the previous green efforts, construction of vertical gardens is also expected to grow 11 percent this year. Vertical gardening is a technique of gardening up a wall or trellis, to reduce use of valuable ground space. This technique has gained attention recently due to increased concerns related to environmental protection. Vertical and interior gardens are also being built inside buildings to absorb pollutants and provide an aesthetic environment. The global vertical garden construction market is predicted to benefit from government initiatives worldwide, seeking to reduce the carbon footprint by pushing mandates.