Building Green is construction that makes sense! We build green because it is good for workers, building owners, occupants, and the environment. In a nut shell, a green home or building is a structure that is built to save energy, water, and waste, is healthy for workers and occupants, is durable, long lasting, and comfortable, and a green building saves you money on utility bills. Green buildings are good for People and Planet! NewGrange builds green to offer the best products on the market. We design and build with a passion to produce a high-quality product at an economical cost, AND with respect for the environment. With our in house staff of LEED APís (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, Accredited Professionals) and our team of highly trained and skilled construction professionals and managers, we are able to build new or retrofit your existing building to meet and exceed LEED certification standards. Whether youíre looking for a LEED building or just a highly-efficient home, NewGrange is your resource for design, construction, and consulting. Contact us for a free initial consulation.
Buildings consume nearly 50% of the energy we use in the United States of America. Therefore, buildings contribute to nearly 50% of the carbon dioxide that we emit into the environment everyday. Nearly 500,000,000 tons of carbon dioxide are emitted every day into the environment, which is significantly damaging our health, our resources, and our ability to be a sustainable planet. Carbon dioxide contributes to air pollution that is affecting all living species on earth, mainly humans, and the majority of scientists agree that it is the leading contributor to global warming, which is seen to be one the most important issues of our time. As a society, If we don't drastically reduce our energy consumption in 2011 and continue to decrease energy consumption in our buildings every single year after that, we will reach a point in our lifetime where there is too much carbon dioxide in the environment to curtail, which could result in dire consequences. BUT YOU CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE! Be a leader in your neighborhood, community, or office. Show your friends, family, or clients that you can reduce your home, business, or building's energy consumption at an affordable price, saving you money in the long run AND saving the environment.
5 ways's you save energy in your building?
1. Change your behavior.
2. Consume energy Responsibly. (Turn off lights, electronics, lap-tops, etc., when not in use.)
3. Replace old light bulbs with CFL's (Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs).
4. Caulk windows or fill any gaps or leaks in the building envelope, replace missing insulation in the attic.
5. Replace old appliances with Energy Star Labeled Appliances.
5 ways's New Grange save you energy in your building?
1. Change light fixtures and fans for energy star labeled fixtures.
2. Conduct a building energy analysis and seal all leaks.
3. Install high efficient AC units, Furnaces, and Water heaters.
4. Install Solar Panels, Solar Thermal, or Wind Turbines.
5. Install energy monitoring device.
Water IS the most precious natural resource on the planet and contrary to popular belief, fresh water resources are beginning to run out throughout most of the world. The average family of five flushes over 10,000 gallons of drinkable grade water down the toilet every year and uses over 25,000 gallons of drinkable grade water to irrigate outside. As the supply of water continues to go down, the cost of water is going up, but we can all help and still enjoy our fresh water supply.
5 way's you save water in your building.
1. Don't leave the faucet running when it's not needed.
2. Reduce the speed of flow of your fixtures. (Turn it down, replace to high-efficiency, or install an aerator.)
3. Do not "automatically" irrigate your lawn if it has recently rained.
4. Don't take 10 minute showers.
5. Do you really need to flush 2 gallons of water down the toilet every time?
How can we save water in your building?
1. We can replace all of your water fixtures (Toilets, Faucets, Showers) for low-flow fixtures. Because more people are buying low-flow toilets, the price of a quality low-flow toilet (1.3GPF or less) is the same price as a regular toilet. The money you spend on replacing fixtures will save you money right away on the cost of water that you are flushing down the drain. The average payback is anywhere from 6 months to 3 years based on your buildings consumption.
2. We can install a rain water harvesting system. Your landscape consumes 35%-50% of the potable water you use yearly. A well designed landscape and irrigation system can reduce potable water demand by 50-75%. A rainwater harvesting barrel or an integrated system can be applied to any downspout to catch rain from your roof and used to water plants, irrigate the lawn, or used to wash your car or bike.
3. We can install a Greywater System. Why use potable water to flush your toilet when you can use rain water or filtered faucet, shower, or laundry water to flush it. The grey water system is currently in legislation in Illinois but is being implemented all over the country. It is easier and more economical in new construction applications but can be feasible in existing buildings.
The building industry consumes more raw materials than any other industry in the world. Additionally, in the United States of America, building occupants and building owners produce more waste per capita than any other country in the world.
5 things you can do to minimize waste.
1. Reuse the back side of paper.
2. Start a recycling program at your home or office.
3. Use a compost bin to collect organic food scraps which can be used for soil or vegetable garden.
4. Buy products that are packaged appropriately.
5. Buy products with recycled content.
5 things New Grange can minimize waste for you.
1. Hire New Grange to Build your house or building.
2. Use New Grange for your construction project.
3. Purchase a New Grange waste management container.
4. Talk to New Grange about recycling or composting.
5. Talk to New Grange about their waste management program.
Designers, Builders, and consumers all need to be more conscientious of the materials that they are consuming, selecting, and installing in their buildings. Not only are resources diminishing as the population continues to grow, but the energy and pollution from shipping these materials are negatively impacting the environment also.
Here are three things that building owners and those in the building industry can do to help the environment through material selections.
1. Think local or regionally. If the material is extracted, manufactured, and distributed within 500 miles of your building, there is much less waste in shipping than if it comes from several different regions.
2. Think renewable resources or recycled content. There are several types of flooring, cabinets, countertops, etc., that come from resources that can regenerate much quicker (bamboo, cork, plantation wood, eucylyptus, papaya) than traditional woods (oak, birch, maple, walnut.)
3. Think salvaged, reused, or reclaimed. Some of the most unique and architecturally pleasing materials and fixtures can be brought from salvage stores such as the Rebuilding exchange, Architectural Artifacts, and Salvage One.
The indoor environment of your home or work is vital to your health and well being, and can be directly correlated to the productivity of you and other building occupants. The indoor environment is essentially the air that you breathe inside the building, the materials that have been installed inside, and your comfort level. Green buildings are designed to maximize natural light and ventilation, good thermal comfort, and select materials responsibly. From good window arrangements and efficiently designed mechanical systems, to local, renewable, and / or non-toxic materials, the indoor environment is essential to your well being.
5 way's you can help your indoor environment?
1. Eliminate indoor pollutants such as off gases from chemical cleaners and high "VOC" paints.
2. Reduce the amount of carpets or rugs in your home that can easily conceal dusts and particles.
3. Remove your shoes at the doorway.
4. Change your furnace filters every 90 days.
5. Use natural light and ventilation whenever possible.
What can New Grange do to help your indoor environment?
1. We can install air filtration units, humidifiers, and dehumidifiers to make your building more comfortable and healthy.
2. Install hard wood floors or tile in high traffic areas.
3. Paint with low VOC paints, install non-toxic or renewable materials cabinets, doors, etc.
4. Install new windows.
5. Install skylights.
Why should Green Building be Important to You!?
Green buildings are proving they save money on utility bills every single month for the life of the building. Our Green Buildings are designed to meet Energy Star and LEED Standards and our buildings are third party tested and verified to make sure that everything we have done performs to the highest standards so that YOU can save money on your utilities. From energy savings and water savings, to renewable energy systems that can dramatically reduce your operational cost, we design and construct to create value for building owners.
The environment is the most important thing to LIFE on earth. From the earth and the skies, to the land and the waters, human life, plant life, and animal life depends on a healthy environment. There is unequivocal scientific evidence that human activity is causing detrimental consequences to the environment and it is resulting in unsustainable levels of pollution, watershed, and environmental degradation. Green building and sustainable education are important to this generation and all the generations that follow. As a society, we have a choice to make things better or to continue on a destructive path and we can all make a difference. From business, consumers, to politicians, we all need to contribute to environmental restoration and help create a sustainable planet for our life-time and the rest of history.