Financial Benefits and Overall Costs of Green Buildings

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There have been uncertainties concerning green buildings. What are green buildings? , What effects do they have? , What do they mean financially? ,These are some of the questions that need answers. The Green Building Council of South Africa describes a green building as “a building which is energy efficient, resource efficient and environmentally responsible-which incorporates design, construction and operational practices that significantly reduce or eliminate its negative impacts on the environment and its occupants” (GBCSA, 2013). The materials and technologies applied in green buildings simply make one wonder if there are any financial benefits, and how the overall costs are affected of constructing such buildings. This section will look at those two areas in detail. Financial Benefits When we look at financial benefits, it is not only during construction but post-construction as well. Financial benefits provided by green buildings over conventional buildings include lower maintenance and operations costs, energy and water saving, productivity and reduced employee health costs. According to a study by Davis Langdon “Costing Green: A Comprehensive Cost Database and Budget Methodology”,( Morris P et al, 2004) a revelation was made that taking to consideration elements like climate, location and other variable factors between non-green buildings and green buildings, most green buildings resulted in little or no impact on the general budget. With all the requirements a green building has, which logically should have a huge impact on the budget turns out to not be the case. Operation and Maintenance Costs To determine the operational and maintenance costs of the green building in the long-run, a project life cycle cost an... ... middle of paper ... ...1. Malaysia. Institute for Environment and Development. Pg 86 – 98. • Dick G. 2000. Green Building Basics. Green Building Alliance Centre. • Kats G.H. 2003. The Costs and Financial Benefits of Green Building. Massachusetts Technology Collaborative. • Kerswill B. 2013. Green Building Council of South Africa. [Online]Available from: [Accessed: 24 March 2014]. • Kubba S. 2010. Green Construction Project Management and Cost Oversight. Amsterdam. Elsevier/Architectural Press. Pg 269 – 271. • Napier T. 2012. Construction Waste Management. Malaysia. National Institute of Building Sciences. • South Africa. Department of Water and Environmental Affairs. 2013. Raw water tariffs. [Online]Available from: [Accessed: 24 March 2014].
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