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Sustainable construction

edificación sostenible

Sustainable construction is getting more importance over time. Not only it contributes to take care of the environment but it also has some social and economic benefits for both investors and clients.

Environmental care and quest for sustainability is increasingly present and coming to the forefront. Multiple cities have begun a race to stake out their mobility systems, urban planning, energy efficiency… Even one of the Sustainable Development Goals, approved in 2015 at the 2030 agenda, is dedicated to the transformation of cities and communities. In order to achieve this goal a key axis is sustainable construction. 
Sustainable construction is defined as the one that, having special respect and compromise for the environment, implies the efficient use of energy and water, non-harmful resources and materials, its healthier and is directed to a reduction of the environmental impact.
This is one of the main challenges that most of the countries are facing. The objective: nearly zero-energy buildings (NZEB). In Europe, energy consumption of buildings represents 40% of the total consumption of energy. And unfortunately, 75% of this energy is produced with fossil fuel. Hence the necessity of taking action to reduce the amount of emissions. 
European normative defines these buildings as constructions with a high efficiency level and a low demand of energy that can be covered mainly by renewable sources. The design must take into account the quirks of the environment and climate conditions and must obey holistic approaches that aim to offer innovative solutions during their whole cycle of life. As long as they meet this criteria they qualify for sustainable construction.
This is reported in the Directive 2010/31/EU of the european parliament and, in Spain, in the Technic Code of Edification. In order to do that, they will need to meet requisites of primary energy consumption; construction quality; isolation; solar control and permeability; and a minimum renewable input to water heating.
Therefore, the way to create nearly zero-energy buildings involves promoting self-consumption via renewable energy systems that cover the energy demand of the building. This implies multiple benefits, as we have pointed out in various blog posts, like the economic saving, the reduction of perjudicial emissions of CO2, more independence from energy enterprises...
Another important aspect is the choice of the materials, with intention to reduce the emissions associated with its production and transport and to guarantee efficiency along the whole lifespan of the building. Because of their insulating properties and low polluting obtention process, cellulose, wood, cork, wool, baked clay and others are sustainable materials.
Lastly, climatization  systems. According to data, of the spanish Ministry of Industry, 47% of the total consumption of energy in buildings responds to climatization. But at the present day, there are lots of efficient alternatives for climatization like radiating floor, aerothermal and dual flow ventilation.
In conclusion, sustainable construction is increasingly important and we can already see it in our daily life. More and more investors are staking in sustainable buildings because this reverberates in economic and social benefits. The future is sustainable.

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