Build sustainably - The benefits of eco-friendly buildings as a means to reduce our carbon footprint can’t be ignored. Any home has the potential to be green but almost 75% of buildings in the EU are energy inefficient. Here are ten steps you can take to make your home more eco-friendly.
Looking at the insulation around your home is a great place to start. Good insulation in your walls, floor and in particular your roof, will aid heating and save on energy costs.
Collect rain water
Now that’s something we have in abundance! Tanks that collect rainwater for garden and bathroom-use are a cost-effective way of reducing our water wastage.
Your heat can also escape through your windows! Double-glazed windows help with insulation, making it cooler during the summer and warmer in the colder months. If double-glazing is too expensive, you can also use thermal-black curtains.
Solar & Wind power
The installation of solar panels or a small wind turbine will provide your eco-home with renewable energy. Installations may be pricey but you’ll eventually have a supply of free and clean electricity.
Low-flush toilets use about 4.5 litres less per flush! This is another great and easy way to reduce the amount of water you waste.
Use the sun
Believe it or not, Ireland does get sunlight! Homes can be designed and positioned to make full use of daytime lighting. The windows will absorb the heat and reduce the need for our radiators to be cranked up to the max all winter.
Did you know The Northern Ireland Sustainable Energy Programme offers a wide range of schemes with funding that will help improve the energy efficiency of your home?
Not everyone has the budget or time to make the above changes to their house. But don’t worry, there are also cheaper and easier ways to make your home more sustainable and energy efficient.
There are many options for sustainable and ethical materials that can be used for flooring, furniture, and even the paints for the walls. Your home will look good, and it won’t have the harmful smell that comes with chemical paint.
Energy efficient light bulbs use up to 75% less energy than traditional bulbs and they can last up to 10 times longer. It’s a 3 in 1, you save on energy, money, and reduce the carbon footprint of your home.
Installing a thermostat or a smart metre allows you to monitor your house temperature. Some smart metres also come with the function to set your goals for reducing your energy consumption.
Native Plant life
Introducing plants into your home will purify your air. Better still, selecting plants that are native to your local area for your garden will be good for sustainability and make your house that much more beautiful.
Working towards a better future
To help build a more sustainable future, we’re cutting our energy use and looking at our own policy initiatives for sustainable living.
We’re also funding climate change research to forecast its impact and to help us prepare and build for a better future. Find more on the AXA Research Fund.