With technologies changing rapidly and knowledge of global best practices being so easily accessible (thanks to the internet), the concept of green architecture is no longer just textbook knowledge. In fact, organizations are using their green image to build a positive brand internally and externally.
You enter your office building and go straight to the parking lot. What do you get to see there? Parking is not allowed in the basement. Wonder why? Just to increase vegetation. Not only this, there are preferred car parking areas for car pooling vehicles and recharge stations for alternatives fuel vehicles.
Now imagine this, your office uses sensitive air conditioners that automatically alters the room temperature depending on the number of people in the room. It also uses eco-friendly paint on the walls. The structure of the office building is designed in such a way that it uses 95 per cent natural light. You are simply working in a green environment.
Corporate India is steadily waking up to the benefits of green architecture including significantly lower running costs and a better brand image. Companies are increasingly acknowledging the benefits of green architecture not just from an environmental perspective, but even from a cost management angle.
Different companies may have different reasons but the important reason for a company to move towards a green architecture is its commitment towards environment conservation. Patni’s green IT-BPO Knowledge Center in Noida is a case in point. It is deigned to use less energy water and natural resources as well as creates less waste. The state of art facility is built as per the guidelines of LEED (Leaderships in energy and Environment Design) India Green Building rating system for New Construction. It is one of the first few buildings in India that is being jointly audited by the Indian Green Building Council (IGBC) and the US Green Building Council (USGBC).
While green buildings require between five percent and seven per cent additional investment, the cost can be recovered within 24 to 30 months.
In case of Cisco, the company feels that its employees need a green and a healthy environment to be truly productive. Cisco campuses have ergonomically designed workplaces, recreational facilities and green areas to provide employee with a world class work environment. Leveraging new on line community Cisco Green employees are now sharing best practices and their recommendations to help Cisco meet its environmental goals. Employees are also sharing their perspectives via short video clips downloadable from a new green focused website. Cisco also has group (multiple) small aliases of green minded employees who shares information. Some of the green initiatives at the campus include rain water harvesting for irrigation and fertilization, garbage / organic waste recycling into bio-gas for cooking, usage of socially responsible green materials, daylight harvesting for internal environmental compact fluorescent lamps (CFL) with electronic ballasts use of occupancy sensors ballasts use of occupancy sensors in enclosed paces, harmonic filters for power paces, harmonic filters for power conditioning and energy saving etc.
Motorola’s manufacturing facility near Chennai was recently honored with the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEEDR) silver certification by the Indian Green Buildings Council. Under the LEEDR Green Building rating System, the facility was evaluated on several parameters such as efficiency of water usage, energy material and resource selection besides indoor environmental quality. The plant implements rain water harvesting capable of collecting about 10,000 kilolitres of water They also have a green belt surrounding the premises covering approximately 120,000 square feet an have adopted a whole building approach to sustainability.
The Green Effect:
Since buildings are a leading contributor to greenhouse gas emissions, to combat climatic change, it is critical for the building industry to rapidly adopt sustainable design practice.
As the environmental impact of buildings becomes more apparent a new phenomenon called green building is gaining momentum. Research and experience increasingly demonstrate that when buildings are designed and operated with their lifecycle impacts in mind, they can provide great environmental economic and social benefits.
Settings standards in energy conservation: Tesco Hindustan Service Center (HSC)> Tesco’s global services arm in Bangalore, has become the first campus in India to completely change 2500 CFL lamps used for interior lighting to LED. As part of the company’s green initiatives, it has also changed 40 garden lights and 70 streetlights to LED installed in the 15 acre campus. The center has rainwater harvesting wells, wastewater treatment plants, algae retardants in the water bodies, solar water heater in the gym and cafeteria, organic gardens and catalytic converters for generators on its campus.