Creating Green Communities

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Creating Green Communities
The earth’s surface is composed of many ecosystems that exist in balance with each
other. Imbalances often come in following man’s activities on the earth’s surface that is
sometimes disruptive. For the balance to be restored, it is essential to plan, design, and promote
the green communities. In the process of restoring a balance in the earth’s ecosystem, the system
needs to be cooperative, adaptable, self-sustaining, and more resilient. In nature, everything
plays a particular role for the environment to remain sustainable. Trees give shades,
decomposing plants provide enrichment to the soil, plants feed birds and other living organisms,
and birds feed on insects that may act as a threat to other plants. When a large number of
individuals live together, they will require energy, water, transport, food sources, and a stable
government to stay in control. In this respect, the objective of green communities is to design a
plan that would enable such complicated human coexistence to be in balance with the
surrounding environment. Some green communities often adopt some systems that have long-
term positive effects on the environment. This paper seeks to discuss the problem of mobility to
the University of Utah, the problem regarding the buildings in the institutions, and one problem
regarding the life of a consumer.
The main mobility problems facing the University of Utah is the idea that human
movements towards the institution have been limited because a majority of people have
increasingly relied on the use of personal cars that create massive traffic congestion. For this
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reason, low-income communities often face poor access to reliable and affordable means of
public transport. The traffic congestions cause long travel periods among communities hence
affecting the time taken to reach the institution (McCamant and Durrett 94). The streets are
perpetually filled with private cars, taxis, and motorcycles. The public transport is mainly
dominated by minibuses and heavy rail system that is often overcrowded, which cannot
adequately meet the needs of the existing population. The need to adapt to environmental
concerns as relates to climatic changes and to accommodate new technologies shows that
mobility is a great challenge in this particular environment (McCamant and Durrett 189). This
implies that there is need to embrace new forms of transportation that would create green
communities and ensure a sustainable environment. Smart transportation is green, and in this
respect, there exist several beneficial types of green transportation that can sustain and improve
walkable urbanism (McCamant and Durrett 104). The green modes of transportation systems
make life easier, cut down on congestion, reduce dependence on the use of cars, are safer and
cheaper; and above all save the earth's surface.
The main solution to this mobility problem is to embrace the idea of landscape noise
reduction. Landscaping is instrumental in reducing noise in instances where one is living in a
noisy environment or living in a place where people have very loud conversations, thereby
making it difficult to adapt to and live in the environment (Roseland 122). In this respect,
landscaping will help in creating a private, cool, outdoor retreat. To properly block noise, the
type of landscaping chosen should be in a position to obstruct the living room or the classroom,
in the case of the institution, from the source of noise. Being that Utah College is located in an
urban area, it is close to loud sounds from hooting vehicles, industrial machines, and shouting
people. In this regard, this solution is quite applicable in this case because it will block the entry
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of noise into the buildings (Von 78). Noise-reducing landscaping provides necessary privacy,
which is important in the urban neighborhoods that have houses built side by side and close
together. It should be noted that landscaping does not serve to completely block noise but to
significantly reduce the level of noise.
The first landscaping method is to install a good fence. A tall fence works to reflect
sound waves originating from behind the fence. In this sense, the more the wall is solid, the more
it becomes effective. It is important to use items such as brick, stone, or concrete to put up such a
structure. A wooden fence that does not have gaps is not effective even as much as it can be of
help to some extent (Roseland 122). An effective noise-reducing fence should be that which does
not have gaps where sound waves can pass through into the private residences of individuals.
The second landscape noise reduction method is to install a water feature. It should be
understood that running water forms white noise that is pleasant to the brain and in this regard, it
helps to block undesirable sound. With the availability of water from the nearby lake, it is
possible to install water feature within the institution in an environmentally-sensitive and
friendly manner (Roseland 101). It works in such a way that it uses recirculating pump that keeps
water running without draining the fountain as more water is added periodically. The water
features can be filled with water from the lake that is kept in buckets around for convenient
refilling. The water feature should be placed next to the building for it to be effective, such as in
the outdoor seating areas depending on the source and impact of the noise.
The solutions discussed above will be instrumental in improving the social and
environmental needs of people around this area. To improve the quality of life of people learning
in this institution, it is crucial to put in place proper drainage systems to ensure that wastes do not
run into the lake to pollute the water. Learners should also be advised to avoid playing loud
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music within the institution because this is not healthy to the environment. Moderate sound
systems would reduce the level of sound pollution within this particular environment (Rogerson
35). To ensure adequate and free aeration in the college classrooms, the windows should be
erected at strategic points of the buildings. Adequate ventilation will reduce air pollution within
the classroom while providing fresh air to individuals as they are learning (Rogerson 54). Such a
step has the potential of improving the lives of individuals as far as their quality of life is
The Downtown Salt Lake City is also facing degradation as a result of human activities,
which dwindles the size of Utah's Great Salt Lake. The shores of the Salt Lake City form the
ecotone between people living within the institution and the organisms living inside the lake,
such as birds. In this regard, there need to be a proper existence between human beings and the
lake organism by ensuring that human activities do not pollute the water. While the shift in water
levels of the lake is partly attributed to the role played in climatic transitions, such as floods and
droughts, the decrease is largely as a result of human causes. Research shows that the water level
has decreased by around 11 feet while its volume has declined by around 48 percent (Rogerson
54). With the increasing number of people settling around the lake, the water levels have
increasingly declined with net river inflow equally decreasing by 39 percent in the recent past.
The salt lake has an economic value of about 1.32 billion dollars in terms of recreation
(Rogerson 89). This implies that the reduced water levels have a negative economic impact on
most industries and even the residents.
The lowered water levels leave the lake bed exposed hence producing more severe dust
storms. For this reason, the Salty Lake City faces adverse air pollution, especially during events
of winter inversions. The events have made the city to experience the worst air quality in the
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recent past. The increasing levels of dust storms will also pose adverse effects on the health of
residents around that region. Also, millions of living organisms call the lake home since it acts as
a source of food and their nesting areas. For this reason, low water levels in the lake threaten the
natural habitat of the living organisms such as birds (Roseland 102). The decreasing water levels
also leave the salt exposed to the environment, which subsequently corrodes the buildings around
the lake. This is the reason most of the buildings around the lake appear old and wasted. To
avoid these massive levels of environmental degradations, humans should regulate their activities
to preserve the water levels and make the environment sustainable (Roseland 153). As much as
the lake may not face a threat of disappearing any time soon, environmental decisions made
today could avoid any dire consequences in future and reserve the benefits that come with its
One of the problems regarding buildings that may compromise greener community poor
air quality and old buildings that often causes corrosion when it rains. It is important to
understand that putting up structures that have a poor circulation often cause air pollution within
particular buildings (Roseland 102). This is an architectural problem that can be solved by
embracing methods that will reduce both air and noise pollution. This can be achieved by
transitioning from traditional building methods to embracing modern and sustainable methods
that involve site planning, architectural design, and barrier construction. There is the acoustical
site design that involves the arrangement of buildings that minimize the impact of noise by
making use of contours and natural shape (Von 54). Acoustical architectural design makes use of
noise reducing concepts that significantly reduces noise pollution. This encompasses room
arrangement, window placement, and building height. The windows and the height of the
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building are placed such that they allow free air circulation into and out of the building. In this
respect, the classes will have fresh air, which is favorable for the students while learning.
As portrayed above, there is a range of green construction standards based on the type of
construction an individual wishes to put up. As much as new design and construction in the
country has significantly slowed during times of recession, the level of change in the entire
industry has not slowed down in any way (Roseland 54). In the recent past, the adoption of new
construction methods has increasingly been observed alongside more environment-friendly
methods of building. It is without a doubt that green building construction has earned a place in
the country's construction industry.
With climatic change and environmental issues fast becoming a matter of concern,
sustainable construction has increasingly been embraced globally. However, these efforts are
faced with some impediments that need to be addressed if a greener construction is to be fully
achieved (Roseland 73). One of the challenges associated with these efforts is lack of proper
project management in the process of construction. Research shows that project cost is another
challenge facing the construction industry. To address the problem related to project costs, there
is need to widen government incentives to include usage of green products and other forms of
technologies that support green construction. Market and client demand form two of the primary
forces that drive green construction (Roseland 66). In the past few years, state and local
governments have been seen to support and adopt regulations and initiatives that support
sustainable buildings. Cutting down on the use of energy and water are among the top driving
forces for green construction.
Cutting down on construction waste and reducing greenhouse gas emissions are among
environmental concerns that dictate how buildings are constructed. Renewable energy and
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primary solar are fast becoming popular in terms of becoming alternatives to building a safer and
green environment. Constructing healthier buildings have become popular because developers
have increasingly realized the benefits associated with embracing healthy buildings (Roseland
92). One of the attributes of healthy buildings is the idea of adopting better air quality and
increased daylighting. Removing volatile organic compounds within the building structures is
one way of improving air quality. Volatile organic compounds often become gases, which can
irritate the eyes, dizziness, and headache. Long-term exposure to this kind of gas can cause
greater damage to major organs such as liver and kidney. Achieving transparency in the
buildings can go a long way in achieving a healthy and sustainable environment. Presently, every
individual is talking about going green and at some point in the future; they shall have joined the
green movement (Scarce 114). The rate at which the world is moving, it is evident that earth is
losing its sustainability due to issues related to pollution and poor construction methods.
One of the problems regarding people’s lives as consumers includes having to deal with
faulty household goods. People’s homes and lives are often filled with goods that are meant to
make life more comfortable and convenient. People are often surrounded by machines that serve
different purposes such that little thought is often given to the possibility of the products
becoming faulty. When the products meant to make life move more smoothly become defective,
the possibility of them causing harm becomes even higher (Scarce 82). For example, an electric
blanket that has defective wiring is likely to cause serious burns to the user while a
malfunctioning garage door opener has a possibility of causing head injury and other life-
threatening crushing injuries (Scarce 109). It is important to understand that when buying
household goods, the same legal procedures are applicable when it comes to buying any other
product. In this respect, the same consumer rights and laws should be applied if anything goes
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wrong. According to the Consumer Rights Act 2015, any type of good bought should be fit for
purpose and have satisfactory quality (Scarce 114). Anything purchased that lack these qualities
should be treated as defective, and for this reason, a consumer has the right to demand a refund
or order for repair or replacement if that particular good is damaged.
When a product is fit for purpose, it means that it should be in a position to accomplish
the role it is meant to play. On the other hand, goods are of satisfactory quality if they fit the
standards they are meant to meet. Consumer goods are expected to be safe for use and in this
sense; a person who sells unsafe products is committing a criminal offense and should, therefore,
face charges in a court of law (Von 54). On the other hand, such goods are also expected to have
satisfactory appearance short of things such as dents and scratches. To solve the problem of
defective products, it is important to put in rules that would ensure that the products sold meet all
the requirements of consumer goods and consumption. When safe products are sold to
consumers, the whole community benefits because people are likely to stay safe and healthier
(Von 77). Consumers should always strive to use eco-friendly products since they cause no harm
to the environment. Most people are often discouraged from embracing the use of eco-friendly
items because they tend to believe that achieving it requires a lot of money and effort. However,
it should be noted that embracing an eco-friendly home is not a very difficult activity (Von 54).
It should be noted that for every good bought from the market, there is often an eco-friendly
alternative that can be chosen by the consumer. For this reason, every consumer should embrace
the use of eco-friendly products because they do not cause harm to the environment and have a
low likelihood of causing injury to the users.
There is an increasing desire for most cities and towns to become green communities.
This is because of the benefits associated with sustainable transportation, renewable energy,
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clean water, and so on. In the process of transforming into a green community, the communities
equally promote the growth of new industries while improving the lives of citizens by giving
them hope and polishing their image. A green community will give organisms in that particular
environment an adaptive ability to transform themselves and make the environment a better
place to live. There is a range of quality resources that can be used by any particular community
to achieve sustainability. In this respect, most municipalities are increasingly appointing
sustainability committees to realize this objective. To create green communities, every state
should ensure that the buildings constructed are environment-friendly and do not put the lives of
people at risk. Consumers should also use products that are safe and healthy.
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Works Cited
McCamant, Kathryn, and Charles Durrett. Creating Cohousing: Building Sustainable
Communities. Gabriola, B.C: New Society Publishers, 2011.
Rogerson, Robert J. Sustainable Communities: Skills and Learning for Place Making. Hatfield,
Hertfordshire: University of Hertfordshire Press, 2011.
Roseland, Mark. Toward Sustainable Communities: Solutions for Citizens and Their
Governments. New York: New Society Publishers, 2012.
Scarce, Rik. Creating Sustainable Communities: Lessons from the Hudson River Region. , 2015.
Von, Hausen M. Dynamic Urban Design: A Handbook for Creating Sustainable Communities
Worldwide. , 2013. Print.

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