A critical assessment of the barriers to commercial green building within the UK

King, Mike (2014) A critical assessment of the barriers to commercial green building within the UK. MSc dissertation, University of Portsmouth.

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    The current UK construction industry is unsustainable resulting in a need for more efficient building techniques. Green building can save key resources such as energy, water and materials throughout the buildings life-cycle and is therefore more efficient than building’s built to code. Consequently, green building can be seen as a ‘win-win’ for the economy and the environment; it saves money from better efficiency of resources in the long term which in turn lowers the environmental impact of construction.
    This study focuses on the commercial sector within the construction industry, critically assessing the barriers preventing a shift towards green building in the UK. This was achieved using a concurrent triangulation research approach which incorporated a literature review, questionnaires, interviews and a case study. The literature review focused on key legislation and policy towards green building both nationally and at the European level, while also providing the background information on the barriers and advantages of green building. From this, the questionnaires and interviews were written in order to assess the current practice and opinions of professionals working within the construction industry. Lastly, the case study was used to highlight the lessons which were translatable for similar projects.
    Analysis of the results indicated that there existed a good awareness of the term, though a lack of clarity surrounding green building in general and the assessment methods were evident. Capital cost was identified as the primary barrier to green building, from the questionnaires, interviews, literature review and the case study. The main reason cited to explain this was that the traditional approach of the industry, being geared towards the delivery of the product, has little concern across the whole building’s life cycle. Future recommendations highlighted the importance of legislation to drive change within the industry, to clarify the terms surrounding green building and to promote awareness by highlighting the potential cost savings, particularly during the life-cycle.

    Item Type: Dissertation
    Departments/Research Groups: Faculty of Technology > School of Civil Engineering and Surveying
    Depositing User: Beth Atkins
    Date Deposited: 16 Jan 2015 15:03
    Last Modified: 28 Jan 2015 12:47
    URI: http://eprints.port.ac.uk/id/eprint/16415

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