Friday, September 22, 2023

Sustainable construction is the most efficient way to save electricity and water

The sustainable construction Its objective is to minimize the environmental impacts that are generated in the construction life cycle, however, they must be thought from the plans to be environmental. The Dominican Republic is one of the countries affected by the climate changebut implementing construction strategies would contribute to its mitigation and would mean savings.

“To obtain a sustainable construction classification, we have to develop and implement actions at a technical engineering level… Reduce the energy cost with the installation of photovoltaic panels, create a water reuse system and the correct management of solid waste”, explains the architect Raúl Prieto Román, which means a reduction in the carbon footprint of its inhabitants.

The National Statistics Office (ONE) indicates that in 2018 the Dominican population reported a consumption of 192,682,349 cubic hectometres of drinking water, with 192,686,326 destined for domestic water consumption. In smaller quantity, industry with 23.1 cubic hectometres in the industrial sector and barely 0.061 in the agricultural sector.

Drinking water consumption in homes shows an increase in the last decade, going from 49,108,413 in 2000 to 116,488,688 in 2010, a difference of 67,380,275 cubic hectometres. Meanwhile, in 2011 it stood at 121.5 million; 2012, 129.2 million; 2013 with 139.1 million and in 2014 it closed with 143.9 million. In 2015 it stood at 159.6 million, 10.7% less than the 176.8 million of 2016 and 16.4% increase compared to the 185.8 million of 2017.


The ONE indicates that of the 2,671,979 households registered in 2010, 95.6% had electric lighting from the public network. That is, 2,555,325 homes. This is followed by kerosene and propane gas lamps with 46,086 and 13,968, respectively. While the own power plant is in 3,583 homes and other unidentified lighting amounts to 53,017.

“Dominican households can use 50% of the terrace to create a photovoltaic panel, which means that there will be a reduction in the cost of the electricity rate and, at the same time, the dependence on fossil fuels will be reduced and it will reduce the carbon footprint”, considers Prieto Román.

According to the ONE, 85.4% of the buildings have exterior walls made of block or concrete, followed by 10.1% made of wood and 2.3% made of zinc. In a lower percentage, 1.8% of palm board, or.3% of other undefined material and 0.1% of shingle.

The country has 1.5 million people who lack the financial resources to acquire decent housing. Therefore, item 9 of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) indicates that building resilient infrastructure, promoting inclusive and sustainable industrialization fosters innovation.

According to the architect, sustainable buildings are synonymous with good for the global population and for the ecosystem. “If you make a building that is aimed at achieving the highest degree of sustainability, it will contribute in the long term to reducing the carbon footprint of your actions,” he said.


Investing in sustainability is becoming a priority issue in companies. In fact, global society demands sustainable operations from businesses and is aware of corporate social responsibility.

However, when will the investment in environmental issues be recovered? According to the architect, the investment happens in the long term. “For example, I consume RD$20,000 a month of electric light, but a solar panel unit amounts to RD$100,000… In a month the return on investment will not be seen, but the increase in surplus value of the good will increase,” he says. .

The specialist indicates that in Paseo Isleño there are 60 single-family homes with prices that vary between US$283,000 and US$379,000, while Rivera Costeña offers 300 rooms between US$118,000 and US$225,000.

“Many Dominicans are interested in investing in real estate and joining tourism at the same time. If you have an investment in Punta Cana, which is a luxury place with a high demand for room supply, in high season you can rent the house and generate income”, says Prieto Román.


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