Healthy and Green Building Advice

Envirodetox provides a healthy and green building advice service to ensure any new construction has minimal impact on the occupants and the earth in the Perth and South West WA region.

The focus for envirodetox is;

  • Material selection advice focusing on life cycle analysis of products and toxicity analysis.
  • Building design advice to minimise overall life time costs of the building and ensure a healthy home environment.

This service is most useful before a builder is engaged to provide clear direction for all parties. Envirodetox can work with architects and contracted builders to ensure optimal results are achieved.

The following are some of the key areas that Envirodetox considers when providing green and healthy building advice.

The Impact of Climate and Microclimate on buildings

The specific climate of an area plays a huge role in the building design and planning for the homes we live in. The block orientation and the effect from the sun, local wind patterns, rainfall, temperature ranges and seasonal changes all have a large bearing on good home design and planning for harmonizing with nature

Designing buildings for Solar Impact

The angle of the Sun is always changing through the day and at different times of the year. The midday sun on December the 21st (the summer solstice) in Perth will be almost directly overhead, while the midday sun on June 21 (the winter solstice) in Perth will be low angled.

It also means that during winter the sun will rise to the north of the east west line and to the south of the east west line in summer. These angles play a huge role in lighting and heating a home and need to be considered carefully in the design of your home.

Water and moisture around the home

The implementation of rain water tanks, grey water use from non toilet fixtures, permeable and use of good water efficient appliances as determined by the WELS scheme will go a long away to reducing water use around the home. 

The surrounds of the building should be moisture free to ensure water does not penetrate into the building and challenge the structural integrity of the building and cause mould.

The bathroom, toilet, laundry and kitchen should be designed to be in close proximity to the water mains and organized in close proximity to each other to reduce plumbing and piping requirements and increase hot water efficiency. It is advised to install a reverse osmosis water filter with re-alkalising properties for all tap water points to provide healthy drinking water free of chlorine, fluoride, heavy metals and bacteria.

Construction Materials and General Design Recommendations

The correct use of construction materials ensures the home is healthy, while minimizing environmental impact. All materials recommended by Envirodetox are sourced by local suppliers and manufacturers. Building Biologists adhere to the following criteria for building materials when designing a home;

  •       Natural Occurrence
  •       Ecological Compatibility
  •       Energy Consumption
  •      Thermal Properties
  •       Acoustic Properties
  •       Diffusion/breathing properties
  •       Hygroscopicity (Able to breathe)
  •       Toxic vapours and gases
  •       Electrical properties and radioactivity
  •       Health impact

Window Selection for the Home

The glass for windows and doors around the home plays a large role in natural heat exchange. The priority in a mixed climate like Perth is to keep heat out of the home, except during the Perth winter season, when solar heat gain and retention of warmth in the house is important.

Insulation Guidance

Ceilings and roof spaces account for 25 to 35 per cent of winter heat loss and due to the high inclination of the Perth sun in summer the majority of heat gain to Perth houses will be to the roof. Unlike walls and windows the roof proves very difficult to shelter, it is therefore imperative that correct insulation is used in the roof cavity.

Best Practice Home Ventilation

Ventilation for the building is crucial to ensure the home has a fresh supply of air to minimize mould growth, maintain a healthy air exchange rate and to assist in natural cooling of the home in summer. The wind patterns for your home need to be used effectively or shielded through forward planning block and home design.

Alternative Pest Management

There are many forms of alternative pest management options as opposed to chemicals. Termite management of the home is crucial at the planning stage to avoid the damage that termites can cause to the home. Termite chemical treatments are not recommended as this will increase toxin exposure to the occupants.

The Electro-climate of the Building

The interaction of electromagnetic fields with the occupants of the home is important to be minimized to avoid health effects. It is therefore imperative to ensure there are no internal sources that can potentially raise EMF’s to the occupants. There is also EMF shielding options that Envirodetox can oversee.

For more information on the Envirodetox Green and Healthy Building advice complete the
Contact Us Form.