Green building incorporates design, construction and operational practices that significantly reduce or eliminate the negative impact of development on the environment and people. Green buildings are energy efficient, resource efficient and environmentally responsible.
The green building movement addresses what are becoming the major issues of our time: excess energy consumption and the related CO2 emissions from burning carbon fuels; the pollution of air, water and land; the depletion of natural resources; and the disposal of waste.
Green buildings have lower operating costs, are more efficient, future-proof, provide a higher rate of return and have been shown to promote wellness, healing and productivity.
Lower operating costs
Research reveals that Green Star SA buildings enjoy energy savings of between 25% and 50% compared to buildings designed to SANS 204 standards. The payback periods of energy and water saving practices are becoming much shorter as a result of increasing utility costs and the wider availability of more affordable green building technology.
Higher returns on assets
Extensive studies in the United States and Australia have shown rental rates in green buildings to be approximately 6% and 5% higher, respectively.
Increased property values
Decreased operating costs, lease premiums and more competitive, less risky, future-proofed buildings contribute to the value of green buildings. This has been empirically proven in the United States and Australia with 11% and 12% valuation premiums, respectively.
Green building creates a differentiated product in the market, which is viewed as technologically advanced and environmentally and socially responsible. These attributes are positively linked to the company brand and image of the owner and/or the tenant.
Reduced liability and risk
Green buildings are future-proofed against increases in utility costs, potential energy and water supply problems, tightening legislation, carbon taxes and the impact of mandatory energy efficiency disclosure, as well as costly retrofits or even obsolescence.