The Many Benefits of Rainwater Harvesting

February 13th, 2019 Posted by Environment No Comment yet

Green energy is becoming more popular than ever. Whether it’s solar panels, wind turbines, or other methods, 18% of all electricity in the United States is now created using renewable resources.

Although its legality has differed from state to state, the Rainwater Collection Act means Californians can now begin harvesting rainwater.

What is Rainwater Harvesting?

Rainwater harvesting is the process of collecting rainfall into large containers and using it for household tasks and irrigation. Collection systems can vary from household to household; some residences have a simple barrel placed beneath a downspout while others have elaborate collection vats connected by a series of pipes. With areas of northern California receiving an average of 40 inches per year, there is plenty of opportunity for homeowners to take advantage of this resource.

What are the Advantages of Rainwater Harvesting?

The primary goal of rainwater harvesting, as outlined by communities like Berkeley, is to provide an alternative water supply for landscape irrigation. The average summer temperature can reach highs of 92℉, so lawns and gardens can become parched if left unwatered for too long. This problem is only further exacerbated by California’s recent droughts.

Rainwater harvesting is not only a great way for homeowners to save money, but also to preserves local aquifers in case of future emergencies. It also limits the amount of stormwater that would normally runoff through the property. Stormwater picks up dangerous pesticides and pollutants while passing to the ocean, and can contaminate pristine areas and bodies of water. By gathering this stormwater and using it, you will preserve these areas and restrict pesticides to an enclosed and manageable environment.

CREED LA fights to ensure that developers pay fair wages to all the hard-working construction professionals throughout the industry while simultaneously providing them with quality health care, continued training, and trustworthy retirement plans. To learn more about how our non-profit organization supports those building a better, greener world for us all, contact CREED LA online or at (877) 810-7473.

NASA’s Ames Sustainability Base: The Future of Federal Construction

February 11th, 2019 Posted by Architecture No Comment yet

Ever since the signing of executive order 13514 by President Obama, US federal departments and agencies have been mandated to make their buildings and operations as eco-friendly as possible. While various department plans are being drafted, the greatest example of this environmental commitment is in the NASA Ames Sustainability Base.

What is the NASA Ames Sustainability Base?

The Ames Sustainability Base is NASA’s latest addition to the Ames Research Center in Silicon Valley. The idea for the facility began in 2007 when NASA launched their “Renovation by Replacement” campaign to upgrade their worksite conditions for the humans inside and the environment outside. Among the 60 federal facilities that are up for LEED (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design) certification, the Ames Sustainability Base is one of the very few businesses to earn the platinum certification.

What Makes the Ames Sustainability Base Different?

The reason the Ames Sustainability Base is a technological marvel is because NASA has taken their design philosophy for space missions and applied it to architecture. The high energy needs of the facility are greatly supported by green technologies, including on-site solar panels, geothermal wells, and a non-combustion Bloom Energy box.

Water reclamation is an important feature for NASA space missions, but it can also be used to great effect down here on Earth. By filtering water from toilets and urinals, NASA plans to cut down on water consumption by 90% and use the reclaimed water for local irrigation.

When it comes to the structure of the facility, many of the materials and pieces of furniture are made with recycled materials, including metals and wood from prior NASA projects.

Environmental technology is also present in the landscape around the building, primarily through the use of stone bioswales that filter pollution out of the earth.

CREED LA fights to ensure that developers pay fair wages to all the hard-working construction professionals throughout the industry while simultaneously providing them with quality health care, continued training, and trustworthy retirement plans. To learn more about how our non-profit organization supports those building a better, greener world for us all, contact CREED LA online or at (877) 810-7473.

Benefits of Reducing Construction & Demolition Waste

February 8th, 2019 Posted by Green Construction No Comment yet

Construction & Demolition (C&D) is one of the messiest industries on the planet, especially when it comes to the waste left behind. Whether communities are being built up or torn down, the bricks, concrete, wood, and piping left over can create a serious burden on the local environment. According to the EPA, over 540 million tons of debris was created by American C&D companies in 2015—the same weight as over 100 Great Pyramids of Giza!

Here are some of the major benefits created by reducing, reusing, and recycling the waste left at C&D sites.

Construction Waste is an Economic Boost

Although it may be simpler to haul the piles of waste off to a landfill and forget about them, the materials left after a demolition project can be quite valuable. Wood products are the most versatile of construction waste, as companies can recycle them into furniture and sell them, a trend that is quite popular with young homeowners. Metal and wood products can also be reused by construction companies as a cheaper material, lowering the building cost of new properties and welcoming more buyers.

Salvaging and recycling construction waste is big business, with over 230,000 jobs being created in 2007 alone to handle all of the recycled material, and many more for investment and expansion.

Building a Better Environment

The US produces a staggering amount of construction waste every year, and that waste hurts the environment in different ways over the course of its life.

The creation of construction materials, specifically steel and concrete, is an intensive process with large amounts of resources used and CO2 expelled. By leaving them in a landfill, that damaging process has been wasted and will be repeated to create replacement items.

Recycling construction waste benefits the environment by cutting down the extraction of virgin resources, as it returns the usable materials to the construction industry and limits the demand for newer products.

Landfills are also an environmentally precarious area, with many of them set to close due to overfilling. By reusing construction materials that would normally be abandoned, the burden for landfills to breakdown their contents is lessened and long-term environmental healing is made possible.

CREED LA fights to ensure that developers pay fair wages to all the hard-working construction professionals throughout the industry while simultaneously providing them with quality health care, continued training, and trustworthy retirement plans. To learn more about how our non-profit organization supports those building a better, greener world for us all, contact CREED LA online or at (877) 810-7473.

How Green Engineering Is Reshaping the Construction Industry

February 5th, 2019 Posted by Uncategorized No Comment yet

The construction industry is going through a profound transformation as the world becomes more aware of the importance of sustainability. Concepts like green engineering are gaining popularity whereas old practices that harm the environment are fading away. The result is the rise of a new generation of buildings that are economically viable, environmentally friendly, and energy-efficient.

What is Green Engineering?

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) defines green engineering as “the design, commercialization, and use of processes and products in a way that reduces pollution, promotes sustainability, and minimizes risk to human health and the environment without sacrificing economic viability and efficiency.”

Green engineering is not a new technology but it is a mindset shift. Not so long ago, construction companies used to build without worrying about CO2 emissions or water management. They would do anything to maximize their profits regardless of the consequences for the environment.

Fortunately, the times are changing.

Environmentally-Friendly Buildings

In this very interesting article, BBC talked to people who are contributing to building a greener future. One of them is Scott Moran, senior director of exhibits and architecture at California Academy of Sciences.

Scott has helped design the building’s green systems over the past 15 years. Some of the features include a living room with nearly 1.7 million plants, insects, and birds; solar panels; hydroelectric power generation; and automatic skylights. “Buildings need to be designed and used in a way to save as much energy and water as possible”, he says.

Buildings like the California Academy of Sciences are expected to become more popular in the near future. According to the International Labor Organization, environmentally-friendly buildings will generate more than 6.5 million jobs by 2030.

If you want to help build a greener future, we can work together!

CREED LA fights to ensure that developers pay fair wages to all the hard-working construction professionals throughout the industry while simultaneously providing them with quality health care, continued training, and trustworthy retirement plans. To learn more about how our non-profit organization supports those building a better, greener world for us all, contact CREED LA online or at (877) 810-7473.

The Benefits of Building Information Modeling (BIM)

December 29th, 2018 Posted by Architecture, Environment, Green Construction No Comment yet

Between architects, engineers, and construction companies (AEC), the process of erecting a building is filled with opportunities for miscommunication, mismeasuring, and misfortune. Luckily for those in the field of construction, technology has now caught up to meet their needs with one incredibly useful tool: BIM.

What is BIM?

Building Information Modeling (BIM) is an exciting opportunity for AEC businesses across the globe that are planning new construction projects. The goal of BIM is to take data from architects and engineers and produce a thorough representation of the structure that will be referenced throughout the development process.

Benefits of BIM

While physical blueprints are always vulnerable to human error and miscommunication between architect and building crews, BIM provides a 3D model that provides an in-depth analysis of the structure’s functionality, as well as constant contact between all parties involved in its development. If any user changes the designs to better fit their needs, the changes are also applied to all views for all parties.

BIM isn’t just useful as a producer of structure models and project plans, it also delivers key information for ongoing maintenance of the building. Maintenance data displayed by BIM includes heatmaps for tracking energy distribution in buildings as well as areas of high pressure where future repairs may be needed.

BIM vs. CAD

Computer Aided Design (CAD) does work when drafting basic home structures, but is incredibly limited due to its lack of parameters. BIM possesses a vast catalogue of supplies and building materials, creating a true-to-life depiction of your project and presenting the practical effect of your choices and plans. Unlike CAD, BIM is also used for civil and road engineering as well as urban infrastructure design.

With the new developments taking place in South Los Angeles, there has never been a better time for AEC companies to join the construction revolution. Call us today at (877) 810-7473 or visit us online to find out how BIM technologies can work for you.

Top 3 Smart City Trends for 2019

December 22nd, 2018 Posted by City Planners in Los Angeles, Green Construction, Los Angeles Construction Projects No Comment yet

Did you know that cities can improve the efficiency of their energy, transportation, and utilities services; reduce consumption, waste, and other costs; and enhance the quality of life of their residents with one single premise?

It’s true.

US cities that incorporate information and communication technologies (ICT) to improve citizen well-being, enhance sustainability, and boost economic development can become designated smart cities.

Here are a few ways that smart cities will evolve in 2019:

Gamification

AT&T, one of the largest telcos in the US, is no stranger to smart technology and its President of IoT Solutions, Chris Penrose, is already predicting the changes ahead. He estimates that network technology will engage people like never before, encouraging them to become more responsible citizens. By paying their utility bills on time, making an effort to recycle, and using public transportation, individuals could earn ‘points’ to redeem for discounts or event passes. Through gamification, the entire city can benefit and improve the quality of life of all of its residents.

5G Implementation

Now that our lives are becoming increasingly connected, from our phones to our homes and soon our cars too, we have more data than ever. In order to share it, though, we need more bandwidth and the technology to make it happen. That’s where 5G comes in, according to Verizon. With it, cities will see improvements in public safety, transit, utilities, public Wi-Fi, and emergency preparedness. Who knew 5G could improve our morning commutes?

Energy Efficient Buildings

It’s no surprise that smart cities would host energy efficient buildings, and changes in technology and construction techniques are making it easier than ever to build them. Eco-friendly HVAC systems, efficient lighting, and improved insulation are all trends that are paving the way for smart cities in 2019.We can’t wait to see how smart cities help us reduce our carbon footprint and work towards net-zero energy buildings in 2019.

CREED LA fights to ensure that developers pay fair wages to all the hard-working construction professionals throughout the industry while simultaneously providing them with quality health care, continued training, and trustworthy retirement plans. To learn more about how our non-profit organization supports those building a better, greener world for us all, contact CREED LA online or at (877) 810-7473.

The Environmental and Cultural Benefits of Ecotourism

December 12th, 2018 Posted by Environment, Environmental News No Comment yet

Global tourism is one of the largest economic generators in the world, with the tourism industry generating over $7.5 trillion in 2014 alone. Although more people than ever are packing their bags and heading to the airport, few consider the environmental and cultural impact of their journeys. As more communities are opening up to visits from foreign travellers, a new consciousness is also growing amongst backpackers in the form of “ecotourism”.

What is Ecotourism?

Ecotourism is, at its core, a respect for local communities and environments while travelling through them. It includes travelling to and learning about ecosystems and communities not normally considered tourism hubs. The idea of ecotourism began in the 1980’s as travellers became more familiar with the diverse cultures and the precarious ecosystems they were visiting.

As the years passed, ecotourism has slowly entered the public conscience and is recognized in most countries globally. In fact, 11.4% of all consumer spending was estimated to be on ecotourism and 2017 was declared the International Year of Sustainable Development by the United Nations.

The Benefits of Ecotourism

Because these destinations are not normally chosen sites for travellers, ecotourism provides a much needed economic boost to local communities. Employment in these areas is able to grow due to new industries that cater to travellers, meaning that your money stays in the community and supports updates in local infrastructure.

In a time where the environment is constantly under threat, ecotourism also allows communities to take ownership of their natural environment and maintain its beauty by controlling tourism avenues. Ecotourism is also important to the travellers themselves, as visiting these regions and learning about communities can provide a more holistic view of the world and the importance of preserving the environment.

At Creed LA, our goal is to combine environmental restoration with economic expansion, a goal that fits perfectly with the ideals of ecotourism. Call us today at (877) 810-7473 or check us out online to find out more about our mission.

3 Benefits of Retrofitting Buildings

December 5th, 2018 Posted by Environmental News, Green Construction No Comment yet

Do you know the benefits of retrofitting buildings?

Retrofitting involves making a few modifications to commercial buildings that create significant benefits like improved energy efficiency and decreased energy demand. As you might be aware, renovations are costly and time-consuming, but they can be worthwhile in the long run. Here are three reasons why retrofitting buildings is a smart idea:

Increased Energy Performance

As the U.S. Department of Energy states, energy-efficiency retrofits can decrease energy demand and, consequently, lower your power bill. This is especially true for old buildings that are equipped with old HVAC systems because the newer ones are more cost-effective. Lighting fixtures, wall insulation, and roofing materials can also contribute to increasing your building’s energy efficiency.

Productivity Boost

It goes without saying that happier employees tend to be more productive. When you make renovations that reduce moisture, improve indoor air quality, and prevent mold growth, you’re contributing to a healthier lifestyle, which increases productivity. While retrofitting might sound like an unnecessary expense, it can actually help improve your cash flow.

Protect the Environment

If you care about sustainability—and you should—retrofitting a building is one of the best things your company could do for the environment. With buildings consuming around 40% of generated energy, they account for a large portion of the carbon emissions in the planet. Do you want to reduce your carbon footprint? Invest in retrofits to reduce your energy expenditure.

CREED LA fights to ensure that developers pay fair wages to all the hard-working construction professionals throughout the industry while simultaneously providing them with quality health care, continued training, and trustworthy retirement plans. To learn more about how our non-profit organization supports those building a better, greener world for us all, contact CREED LA online or at (877) 810-7473.

Understanding the US Housing Crisis

November 30th, 2018 Posted by Environmental News, Los Angeles Construction Projects No Comment yet

According to the National Association of Realtors, sales of newly built, single-family homes dropped to an annual rate of 544,000 units in October. That’s the lowest pace since March 2016, and it happens at a time when a housing-shortage issue is slowing down the US housing market. In March, Business Insider reported that existing home sales were 4.5% below the market potential. Here’s what you need to know to understand the problem:

What is Causing It?

The law of supply and demand is one of the most well-known economics principles. In a nutshell, low supply and high demand increase price whereas high supply and low demand lower price.

Right now, the US housing market is experiencing a lack of supply and robust demand, which is upping the prices for existing homes. Higher prices mean that fewer people can afford these houses, which slow down sales.

That’s not the only cause of the problem, though.

Mortgage rates are rising, and existing homeowners that have mortgages with low rates don’t want to sell their homes and lose their prime rates. Consequently, it’s causing a housing-shortage issue in the United States.

Consequences 

Also, keep in mind that the home seller is also a home buyer. Think about it: People don’t sell their house to become homeless, they sell it to buy another one. If they can’t sell, they can’t buy and, therefore, someone else won’t be able to sell their house, too.

While the shrinking number of homes available keeps pushing up prices, the inventory is slowly rising again in the biggest markets.

Let’s keep an eye on what is going to happen in 2019. Here’s hoping for a recovery!

CREED LA fights to ensure that developers pay fair wages to all the hard-working construction professionals throughout the industry while simultaneously providing them with quality health care, continued training, and trustworthy retirement plans. To learn more about how our non-profit organization supports those building a better, greener world for us all, contact CREED LA online or at (877) 810-7473.

How Circular Construction Is Reshaping the Industry

November 21st, 2018 Posted by Green Construction No Comment yet

According to the World Economic Forum, the construction industry is the largest global consumer of resources and raw materials. On the other hand, a significant portion of these materials are not used effectively. For example, in the United States, about 40% of solid waste comes from construction and demolition, which directly contradicts global efforts to create a sustainable world.

The good news is that circular construction is slowly reshaping the construction industry with sustainable practices that benefit the environment, improve people’s quality of life, and add a new stream of revenue for construction companies. Do you want to know how it works?

What is Circular Construction?

Before we talk about circular construction, we have to understand the concept of circular economies. The World Economic Forum defines a circular economy as “an industrial system that is restorative or regenerative by intention and design”. In a nutshell, circular economies are very connected to the idea of sustainability and the 4 R’s: reduction, reuse, recycling, and recovery.

Circular construction is committed to reducing waste and maximizing the value of materials used in each step of a project. There are countries already discussing strategies to avoid disposal of resources that still have some utility and value.

The European Union is debating a goal to recycle 70% of all municipal waste by 2030, and to make it illegal to send recyclable materials to landfills by 2025. Construction companies will have to adapt to these new laws if they pass.

Benefits of Circular Construction

While circular construction is a radical change for the industry, it comes with a few benefits. Besides protecting the environment by reducing waste, it can help construction companies make extra cash. For example, rock and brick can be used for gravel or erosion control, and hardwood can be recycled as long as it stays dry. If construction companies find a way to make circular construction viable, they’re not only helping the environment but also increasing their revenue.

CREED LA fights to ensure that developers pay fair wages to all the hard-working construction professionals throughout the industry while simultaneously providing them with quality health care, continued training, and trustworthy retirement plans. To learn more about how our non-profit organization supports those building a better, greener world for us all, contact CREED LA online or at (877) 810-7473.

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