What is Green building

A building which can function using an optimum amount of energy, consume less water, conserve natural resources, generate less waste and create spaces for healthy and comfortable living, as compared to conventional buildings, is a green building.

Conventional methods of building use tremendous quantities of material, many of them non-renewable and toxic, and pay little attention to the impact the building has on the environment. Green buildings not only reduce these impacts but are also healthier and consume less energy saving money in the long run.

Green building design is a practical and climate conscious approach to building design. Various factors, like geographical location, prevailing climatic conditions, use of locally available and low embodied energy materials and design parameters relevant to the type of usage of the building are normally taken into consideration. Such an approach ensures minimum harm to the environment, while constructing and using the building.

When a number of green buildings are located in proximity, they would create a green zone, providing much healthier environment and minimise heat-island effect. The ultimate aim will then be to create many such areas, which would help the towns and cities and therefore the nation in reducing total energy requirement and also the overall global carbon footprint.

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Operational benefits of a Green Building

  • 50-70% reduction in the cost of energy
  • 40% reduction in the use of potable water
  • 100% wastewater treatment in line with tertiary standards
  • Boost to the local economy (materials and products to be procured within a limited radius of the site
  • Higher productivity/ improved quality of life
  • Provision of energy security in mission critical applications
  • Significant reduction in the emission of greenhouse gases

Salient features of a Green Building

Rooftop Garden

Rooftop and vertical gardens are often associated with green buildings. Rooftop gardens can be efficient measures to incorporate into new or existing developments. Rooftops gardens help mitigate the negative impacts of cities on the environment, by conserving energy and water; improving air and water quality; assisting in storm water management; absorbing solar radiation; becoming a source of local food production; and providing habitat restoration. Green walls are not only a significant architectural feature, but also contribute to reduction in the local urban heat islands.

Guidelines for Green Buidlings

  • LEED and IGBC are the only two rating systems that were used in India for the green certification of existing buildings. Therefore, both rating systems could be used for the purpose of developing ‘Green Building’ guidelines for KMC (covering all types of buildings including the special cases of slums and heritage buildings).
  • There are no incentive programmes for existing buildings that have the potential to be adapted to ‘Green Building’ guidelines.

GRIHA Manual

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Looking beyond Green Buildings

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For New Construction

  • The State Guidelines are in line with IGBC and GRIHA guidelines.

For Existing Construction

  • There lies lot of potential of Going Green in existing buildings of Kolkata


Coming Soon


Building Department, KMC