Green construction in Israel

Green construction is a method that favors avoidance of damage to the environment (as much as possible) and favors the use of perishable and recycled natural resources as well as maximum energy savings. Among other purposes it strives to create a comfortable, healthy and pleasant living / working environment while saving on energy, water and raw materials.

As expected, this green trend has been gaining momentum over the last several years, but in Israel of all places, it is advancing slowly compared to world trends. Standard # 5281 is being promoted here, which involves sustainable construction to reduce the building’s effect on the environment. This standard can be applied to both new buildings and existing buildings that are being renovated. Buildings that fulfill the standard’s requirements will be defined as sustainable of green buildings.

The process of granting the standard is done in two steps:

  1. The first step is part of the planning phase that includes the plans’ approval by the authorities. The planning is rated according to a chart.
  2. The second step is done be evaluating the completed building and ensuring that the actual implementation actually matches the planning. The results of these steps constitute the building’s final rating. The minimal rating is 55 points and the maximal rating is over 90 points. The rating is performed by a lab that has been certified for this purpose.

As of the end of 2016, 329 buildings have been certified as fulfilling the standard, and 650 additional buildings were in the process of being tested. Some 50 buildings have been erected according to foreign standards such as Leed Breeam and others. Most green buildings in Israel are residential condominiums, and a few are office buildings or public and educational buildings. The ministry responsible for the standard is the Ministry of Environmental Protection in collaboration with the Standards Institution, and this is the entity that authorizes the marking of a building with Israeli Standard Mark 5281.

The current situation in Israel is that there are still many barriers to making the standard widespread among entrepreneurs and designers. There is lack of collaboration between the different government ministries, particularly the Housing and Construction Ministry and the Ministry of Internal Affairs. No economic incentives are being offered to entrepreneurs yet, and without significant incentives no progress or advancement will take place.

Possible incentives: tax benefits, subsidizing water and energy systems, preference in mortgages to residents purchasing homes with a green standard, and loans that will be provided by funds dedicated to green construction. Obviously there is still a lot to do and improve.

Quality of life and ecological contribution:

The important benefits of green construction as far as quality of life and ecological contribution are having an effect, and more and more people choose to build their homes by using this method. Its significant benefits are more effective thermal and acoustic insulation in both summer and winter, considerable reduction of on-site construction waste, improved natural lighting, minimal maintenance needs after construction has been completed and more.

At Austec Shamir we have been building green right from the beginning (1991). As time progressed, we improved the green qualities of our houses to even higher levels. For us, green construction is not a slogan, but a practical principle that we actually implement in the buildings we construct.

We do it out of ideology and out of the understanding that the consumer is smart and wants to live in a high quality home that utilizes green principles. A home that provides comfort must save on energy and preserve the environment for future generations. Austec Shamir is one of the leading green construction companies in Israel. Please leave your contact information in our contact form, in order to talk to a professional consultant who will help you make a decision about your future actions.