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Ecological Housing Assignment 001

Ecological Housing Assignment 001

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Published by: Hemant Chandravanshi on Jul 30, 2012
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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ECOLOGICAL HOUSINCivilizations are often known by their architectural legacy. We discover in them the accumulatedwisdom of thousands of years, based on a deep understanding of sustainable patterns of living. Thesepriceless legacies are vanishing under the assault of the technologies and fashions let loose by theIndustrial Revolution. The rapid growth of the global economy and the rising trends in populationand urbanization has raised concrete jungles over once verdant landscapes, threatening flora andfauna. Social changes that accompany affluence such as the splitting up of the extended families intonuclear families and the demand for larger houses, have added momentum to the increasing demandfor housing. The informal sector is playing a major part in supplying the huge demand for housing.This often includes self built houses, many of them illegal and mostly lacking infrastructure (UNEPDTIE, 2003. p.5) A combination of increasing quantities and decreasing qualities is straining thecarrying capacity of the global ecosystem. Taking into account its entire lifespan, the builtenvironment worldwide is currently responsible for up to 25 to 40% of energy use, 30 to 40% of solid waste generation, and 30 to 40% of global greenhouse gas emissions.(UNEP DTIE, 2006)On the positive side, the building and construction sector have become the engines of economicgrowth in the modern era. On an average, the sector provides 5 to 10% of Employment,
What is ecological housing?
Ecological housing is one of the most modern and popular ways to stayBETTER than just ‘green’. Ecological housing has the purpose of reducing negative effects on theenvironment, and going further than that into actually aiding the environment. Ecological houses arebuilt with the goal of sustainable development, in other words using resources and technologies thatfocus on renewability.Ecology is defined as the scientific study of the distribution and abundance of life as well as theinteractions between organisms and their natural environment. This is what we humans are trying toaccomplish with ecological housing – to find a more harmonious way to interact with our naturalenvironment here on planet earth. If we lessen the damage now, there will be a greater opportunityfor the human race to thrive in the future.Ecological housing, applied to the global housing market, concentrates on many technologies; a newone, for example, is 'energy conservation housing'. In energy conservation housing, the processcalled exterior surface cooling involves the heat flow on a building moving from hot to cold areas.This minimizes the energy that we use to heat the interiors of our buildings. It is a new developmentthat is being worked on in order to create energy-efficient plans for our global housing market and toboost even more the efficiency of our ecological housing.Ecological housing is smart housing, meant to use materials and processes that are easy on theenvironment and energy usage, and even contribute to a healthy environment.Source:www.ecologicalhousing.com 
The need for eco-housinWhat is eco-housing?What are the approaches for achieving eco-housing?
 While eco-housing affirms that the basic purpose of buildings is to ensure human comfort, health andsurvival at an affordable cost, it reminds us that this is best achieved by being in harmony with theecosystem and the socio-economic system. The use of resources for ensuring human comfort andsurvival would be done efficiently and effectively, without crossing any thresholdsMany specialized tools and techniques could be used for achieving the objectives of eco housing.Some of the cross-cutting approaches that underlie many of these tools and techniques are: IntegratedDesign Process; Life Cycle approaches; decreasing resource intensity; bio-climatic design; adoptingtraditional and local architectural practices; and the use of renewable resources.
Integrated Design Process
In a conventional design process, each one works within his area of expertise with minimuminteraction. The Integrated Design Process is based on inter-disciplinary research and design. Ratherthan studying the individual building components, systems, or functions in isolation, experts fromdifferent disciplines collaborate to analyse the interrelated impacts on the economy, environment,society, building components and materials and find common solutions. Through their collaborativeeffort they try to integrate different objectives like economic efficiency, environment friendly siteplanning, appropriate choices of materials and products, sustainable use of energy and water,provision of clean water, indoor environment quality and sanitation, waste water and solid wastemanagement, and proper operation and maintenance.
Life Cycle approaches
The traditional compare metalized approach considered each stage of a product’s life cycle,separately. For example, the manufacturer was not much concerned much with what happened to theproduct after sales. The environmental manager was unaware of the design and manufacturing issuesand used to be preoccupied with “end of pipe” solutions after the waste or pollution was generated.Eco-housing encourages the consideration of the entire life-cycle of the house: from design, throughconstruction, use, maintenance and to end of life activities. Life Cycle thinking takes into account allstages of a buildings existence and considers all stakeholders.
 Decreasing resource intensityEco-housing emphasizes the rational use of materials, energy and water. To reduce resource use, theapproach discourages use of materials with high resource intensity like concrete and steel. Itencourages the use of materials and products with longer lives and needing lesser maintenance. Theconcept of multifunctional design helps in extending the lifetime of a building, by converting ormodifying it. Recycling is enabled by deconstruction friendly design and manufacturing. Energyefficiency and load management helps in reducing the energy intensity. Technologies and techniquesare available for reducing water use.
Bioclimatic designWhat is Bioclimatic design
A building provides a passive control over the climate, by separating the interior from the exterior.Additional controls, called active controls, can be provided by energy consuming heating, coolingand humidity control systems. One of the aims in eco housing is to optimize the passive controlstrategies to achieve comfort conditions and use active controls only if essential. This approach isemphasized in bioclimatic architecture. The main elements in a bioclimatic design are passive. Incontrast, in conventional design the designers do not give much consideration to freely availableenvironmental resources. Instead they rely on active controls to create comfort conditions.
Using renewable resources

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