*Featured image sourced from www.cloudhax.com
While the usage of green products evidently reduces environmental harm, the efforts in producing these environment-friendly products are reversed if the manufacturing processes, standard operating procedures (SOPs) and the building itself, negatively impacts the environment. The usage of non-renewable sources and high emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) are some of the many factors that negatively impact the environment.
With the existence of a green rating tool such as Green Building Index (GBI), the journey towards a greener, cleaner and safer environment can be easily realised. Let’s dive deeper into GBI.
GBI – What is it?
Picture source: maica.com.my
GBI is Malaysia’s industry-recognised green rating tool specifically designed in-line with Malaysia’s tropical weather and environmental context that measures the environmental-friendliness of manufacturing processes, SOPs and buildings using 6 criteria (explained below).
What are the criteria involved in GBI?
Under the GBI rating tool, a total of six target areas are emphasised in order for a building to be certified “green”. The six areas are elaborated below:
- Energy efficiency (EE)
- This area measures the ability of the building and manufacturing processes on energy efficiency by improving energy consumption through the optimisation of building orientation, minimizing solar heat gain through the building envelope and harvesting natural lighting. The practice of using renewable energy sources, proper testing, commissioning and regular maintenance are also heavily implied in this area.
- Materials and resources (MR)
- This area emphasises on the usage of environment-friendly materials that are sourced from sustainable sources and recycling. It also focuses on the implementation of a proper waste management system with sufficient storage to avoid illegal waste dumping methods.
- Water efficiency (WE)
- WE focuses on the proper usage of water through the implementation of rainwater harvesting, water recycling and water-saving fittings.
- Indoor environment quality (EQ)
- This area focuses on the quality of indoor air, acoustics, visual and thermal comfort. Good air quality can be achieved through the usage of low volatile organic compound materials, application of quality air filtration, proper control of air temperature, ventilation and humidity.
- Sustainable site planning and management (SM)
- Appropriate sites with access to public transportation services, community services and open spaces are heavily factored in this category. Other criteria include, avoiding and conserving environmentally sensitive areas through the redevelopment of existing sites, implementing proper construction management, storm water management and reducing strains on existing infrastructure capacity.
- Innovation (IN)
- This area emphasises on the sustainability of a building to maintain its environmental-friendly abilities through innovative design and initiatives that meet the objectives of GBI.
This rating tool was fundamentally derived from existing green rating tools such as Green Mark (Singapore) and Green Star System (Australia). It was developed by Pertubuhan Arkitek Malaysia (PAM) and the Association of Consulting Engineers Malaysia (ACEM).
Why go green?
The benefits of possessing a clean, environmental-friendly building and processes are plentiful most importantly, it ensures buildings remain relevant in the future. Moreover, the emphasis on renewable energy sources and recyclable materials reduces operating costs of a production. Focusing on green initiatives can also expand and shape markets for green product and services this expanding one’s business operations with the chance to gain more profit.
Ultimately, it paves the path towards a healthier, cleaner and safe environment for the benefit of current and future generations.
For more information regarding GBI, click here.