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Green Buildings, Garden Design and Behaviour to Combat Global Warming

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Green Buildings, Garden Design and Behaviour to Combat Global Warming

Buildings, renovation and landscaping could play a major role in attacking Climate Change, says Archicentre, the building advisory service of the Royal Australian Institute of Architect, calling for Federal and State Governments to focus on basics.

Combating global warning is not rocket science and most of the weapons are within the collective hands of the community and government at all levels.

Archicentre said simple measures such as switching to energy efficient light bulbs, better insulation and ventilation, utilising overhanging eaves, installing shade pergolas, water efficient taps, showerheads and toilets and the use of blinds in hot climates can all contribute to combating global warming.

“The size of homes in the future would be a major challenge for the government and the community as many large homes had just one person living in them making them highly environmentally inefficient and contributors to global warming,” said Mr Robert Caulfield, Managing Director of Archicentre.

“A better use of materials in construction, orientation of buildings to maximise solar energy, lessening the use of air conditioners and heaters in homes and offices could make a major impact on global warming.”

Mr Caulfield said the biggest issue however, is changing peoples’ attitudes to how they manage resources in their homes and workplaces. The simple task of placing a desk near a window in the home office could see natural light being used rather than full time lighting being required.

“Wearing warmer clothes in winter in the home could see the lowering of the level of heat required,” he said.

“The drought and resulting water restrictions throughout Australia have provided a major wake up call on the value of having access to water and people literally in their hundreds of thousands are showering in buckets to recycle water to protect their gardens.”

Mr Caulfield said that the lack of water and the trend for people to seek a sanctuary in their home to wind down has seen the return of the courtyard as a favourite extra room.

“With water at a premium, people are using decks and other paving materials in landscaping along with strategic plantings of drought resistant plants, diminishing the use of the traditional backyard lawn,” said Mr Caulfield.

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