What Does Sustainability Mean to You?
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What Does Sustainability Mean to You?

Your Name
Daniel Diaz Salgado

“A form of development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of the future generations to meet their own needs.” This caption was defined by Gro Harlem, chair of the United Nations World Commission on Environment and Development, in 1987.

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Sustainability started to be significant due to the increasing awareness of the environmental challenges presented by climate change and resource depletion, shaping how the industry operates. This topic is broad in scope, influencing how we manage resources and shape how we build our communities; the issue demands a holistic approach that considers development’s economic, social, and environmental impact. Building in a sustainable manner requires minimizing the negative impact of development, emphasizing the efficiency in the use of energy, materials, and space.

In 1994, the International Council for Research and Innovation in Building and Construction proposed a framework for sustainable development which I consider suitable to share; they share the following principles: Reduce resource consumption, reuse resources, recycle resources for reuse, protect nature, eliminate toxins, apply life-cycle costing and focus on quality.

Inspirational Examples 1. Standards as the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) provide a set of measurable criteria that promote environmentally sustainable construction; the rating is continually being evaluated and refined in response to new information and feedback from the industry. It started in the U.S., but more than 135 countries now support these standards.

2. Another green rating system is the Building Research Environmental Assessment Method (BREEAM), established by the Building Research Establishment in the United Kingdom for measuring the performance of planned communities and buildings.

3. Passivhaus is a standard developed in Europe to evaluate and produce low-energy buildings. This iniciative aims to provide a high level of occupant comfort while using less energy for heating and cooling.

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