Off Grid Living Option. Sustainable Infrastructure & Healthy Materials
Materials matter. They are the fabric of our built environment. However, a growing body of environmental health research has ballooned in the last decade, and shown that commonly used building materials often contain chemicals known or suspected to be hazardous to human health. Hazardous materials can also pose impacts on people and natural systems across materials’ life cycles, during extraction, manufacturing, installation, and disposal.
Through better planning and informed choices—often at the same or lower cost—we can use healthier building products to achieve dramatic improvements in people’s health and well-being, lowering medical costs and reducing sick days.
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What exactly is living off-grid?
The term off-grid actually means disconnected from the main national transmission grid of electricity. For some, off-grid living simply means disconnected from the electrical grid, for others the concept extends to a completely self-sufficient existence without reliance on any public utilities, including gas and water supply.
Why live off-grid?
There are many reasons people choose to live off-grid. Here are some of them:
• Freedom from utility bills
• A desire to live more in tune with the environment
• A desire to be more environmentally responsible
• Location (remote and beautiful)
• Healthier lifestyle
• Educating future generations
• To opt out of consumerism
• To achieve complete independence
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We are living in the most dramatic era of infrastructure expansion in human history, with global investments in transportation, energy, water and other infrastructure expected to double by 2030.
Sustainable infrastructure involves developing roads, buildings, energy and water infrastruc-ture with due consideration to economic, social and environmental implications.
The International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD), which designed SAVi and runs the assessments, defines sustainable infrastructure assets as those which:
• Lower carbon and environmental footprints
• Protect natural ecosystems
• Prove resilient to changing climates
• Optimize the use of natural ecosystems and their “infrastructure services”
• Move beyond compliance on core labour standards and human rights
• Trigger technological and industrial innovation
• Increase investment in education and research and development (R&D)
• Increase employment
• Demonstrate financial viability
• Crowd-in domestic investors and businesses
• Increase foreign direct investment
• Bring value for money for taxpayers and investors
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