Environmental protection is an issue around the world, but Maui, as well as the entire state of Hawaii, is very sensitive to environmental issues. Our laws and regulations are made with preserving our unique environment in mind. We want to make sure that everything stays the way our ancestors left it to us, and that it stays that way for future generations as well.
“Green” or sustainable design is the intent to design and build with minimal impact on both the environment and to the health of a building’s inhabitants. One option is the choice of environmentally-friendly building materials and construction best practices to become a LEED Certified structure.
With unique insight on building with respect to the land, an architect can play a key role in environmental protection, particularly in such a complex place like Maui.
Offer Advice On Sustainability
It’s more than just planting trees or using the newest eco-friendly paint. Contracting with a LEED Certified architect who understands the environmental impact of building in Maui can help you see where you can reduce your carbon footprint while still enjoying a beautiful home or new commercial building.
Although “green design” and is available and used frequently, helping the environment goes farther than that. The AIA Code of Ethics indicates that architects have a responsibility to advise clients of sustainable options for their projects, including:
- Energy conservation
- Water usage
- Building materials
- Climate change
Rule 6.501 also states that “Members shall consider with their clients the environmental effects of their project decisions.”
Reduce Environmental Impact
Because our ecosystem is so important to everything in Maui, reducing environmental impact can go a long way in making Maui a better place to live for everyone. Designing structures that work with the climate instead of against it is part of that concept.
One concept is to design homes with the expectation that it will experience a hurricane. In the same vein, other design elements are useful when increasing sustainability and reducing any impact on the environment.
Maui’s desirable weather means an abundant supply of water and sunlight for solar energy, making it ideal for a partial or full off-grid living for those who want it. Solar water heating is just one renewable resource that can reduce environmental impact and save homeowners on utility costs.
Other factors that help reduce environmental impact include:
- Design with “energy intelligence” in mind, such as passive solar designs
- Reducing wasted interior space
- Renewable energy resources (solar panels, water collection, etc.)
- Using recycled and/or environmentally friendly building materials where available
- Improving indoor ventilation to clear out polluted air
- Improving insulation to prevent dissipation of heating or cooling
It’s difficult to predict what Maui will look like in 50 to 100 years. Incorporating some flexibility into current designs can allow for modifications later to adapt to future effects from climate change. As building codes are updated to allow for future adaptations, architects can ensure that today’s new home or building will be as efficient and eco-friendly in the future as it is now.
Let Pro Draft Design Your Next Green Home Or Commercial Building
Pro Draft specializes in sustainable architecture and can help make your next building project green and LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Certified. We understand how to mitigate environmental impact to preserve Maui’s unique environment and to help homeowners and businesses become more eco-friendly, including the going-off grid as much as possible.
We can help with architecture, drawings, blueprints, permits, and answer all of your questions before the first day of construction. We’re happy to help, and will work to ensure your project is exactly the way you envision.