Sustainability, as applied today, has many definitions. It is being energy efficient, but much more. Most definitions of sustainability revolve around the idea of balance, thinking of the future and minimizing impact today. Sustainability issues in buildings include energy efficiency, water manage­ment, air quality, waste management, and recycling. There are sustainable practices, products, and techniques in the design and construction of a building. Sustainability is also a philosophical ap­proach that guides design and business decisions.

Подпись: Envision a Sustainable Building The Rocky Mountain Institute ( offers this description of a sus-tainable building: • makes appropriate use of land. • uses water, energy, lumber, and other resources efficiently. • Enhances human health. • Strengthens local economies and communities. • Conserves plants, animals, endangered species, and natural habitats. • Protects agricultural, cultural, and archeological resources. • Is economical to build and operate. • Is nice to live in.

In recent years, the term green building has come to represent policies and practices that are environmentally responsible—sustainable. Sustainable, green building practices are recog­nized to:

• Promote healthy places to live and work.

• Enhance and protect natural ecosystems and biodiversity.

• Improve air and water quality.

• Reduce solid waste.

• Conserve natural resources.

For the designer, there are many opportunities to implement sustainable design policies and prac­tices. A general overview is presented in the following list. This chapter will further detail many opportunities to practice sustainability that are particularly applicable to bathroom design and construction.

• Think small, compact—minimalist. A smaller space is a more sustainable space. Fewer materials are used in the constructing of a smaller space. There is less space to heat and cool. Less energy is needed for lighting (see Figure 3.1).

• Specify environmentally healthy building and interior finish materials, including nontoxic, sus­tainably harvested, recycled, or renewable resource products. Look for opportunities to reuse materials through salvage or repurposing.

• Specify materials and products from local sources to minimize the energy or pollution "cost" for transportation.

• Specify products, including appliances, which are energy efficient.

• Specify plumbing fixtures and appliances that conserve water.

• Maximize the use of daylight and specify energy-efficient light sources.

• Plan window placement to maximize passive solar gain through south-facing windows. Mini­mize heat loss through north windows and limit heat gain though west windows.

• Plan the layout of the bathroom and auxiliary spaces to maximize the use of standard size ma­terials and products, minimizing the amount of construction waste.

• Investigate and implement opportunities to recycle construction and demolition waste. Encour­age clients to donate serviceable cabinetry, appliances, and fixtures removed in renovations to charitable organizations.

Updated: September 26, 2015 — 7:15 am