Bioconstruction, sustainable construction and ecological construction
The growing interest in sustainable, ecological construction, bio-construction and the surrounding area has brought with it a proliferation of services, companies and professions of the utmost interest, although many of them have little in the way of sustainability and ecology, and what they are trying to achieve is to ride a wave that shows strength of projection. This hypocritical practice is called Greenwashing, (https://es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greenwashing), and we will talk about it in depth another day.
My intention is to broaden the interest in those mentioned, but also the knowledge, which will make it easier to separate the wheat from the chaff when the time comes, which will undoubtedly come, and the sooner the better for you.
The three concepts are closely related, overlapping, complementary and also working separately.
Through a previous study, climatological, shadows, types of soil, and orientation of the environment where the construction will be located, a design is defined through which our building is capable of taking advantage of all the available advantages to achieve maximum comfort with minimum energy investment. Solar and wind energy, and why not, also hydraulic energy have their place in this space.
Taking advantage of the conditions that nature offers us and with the greatest respect for the environment, we will create a design that optimizes these qualities to the maximum, and we have not invented it, you have not either. Bioconstruction or bioclimatic architecture is what our ancestors have done since the beginning of time, taking advantage of the environment to create a comfortable space in which to live. Unfortunately, «progress» has distanced us substantially from these practices and knowledge.
Today, a construction company that describes itself as practising bio-construction must begin with a bio-climatic study, and then move on to competent design that encompasses the advantages detected and minimises the disadvantages..
Sustainability should be a basic and elementary principle with which we all agree without the slightest reticence in the interest of possible economic benefit. Sustainability is one of the pillars of our future as a species.
Sustainable architecture has to look for the way to use natural resources to execute the construction in order to reduce to the maximum the impact on the environment and on its occupants.
We must protect the water or hydrographic conditions of the environment, as well as its ecosystems, for which it is essential to use natural materials, if possible native ones. Minimize energy consumption by optimizing the quality of insulation and air conditioning, promoting thermal comfort.
The main objective of ecological construction, of ecological architecture, is to minimize the impact on the environment produced by the execution of the works and its permanence in the chosen space. Both to the mentioned environment and to the health of its inhabitants.
Reducing waste, promoting the recycling of materials, both during and after construction, using noble, natural materials for construction, reusing grey water and rainwater, improving energy efficiency by favouring thermal insulation, these concepts are not unique but essential for a building to be considered ecological.
Obviously, it is practically impossible to obtain a clearly sustainable and ecological house or building, no matter how minimal the implementation of services may be, we will be forced to break one or another principle.
The key is to be able to add up, to ensure that our construction combines the maximum beneficial aspects for the above-mentioned principles. Try to add, avoid subtracting.
So, with this minimum base exposed, next time someone tells you that this or that person is building a building that is to be catalogued as sustainable and ecological, under the principles of bio-construction, you can ask the appropriate and consequent questions to evaluate by your own means how much truth there is in the statement.
Let’s try to add up. It is for the good of all.
Thanks for your time.