Deforestation, carbon emission, extensive use of fossil fuels, inadequate waste management, and a general lack of awareness and responsibility towards the environment have led to prolonged and alarming conditions of global warming and pollution. To bring all aspects of the environment into balance again, the global developmental aim has undergone a major shift opting for sustainability over commercial gains. This paradigm shift has prominently made its presence felt in the infrastructure sector as construction and civil consultancy companies incline toward the making of more ecologically compatible infrastructure. Here are five how they do it.
1. More In-depth Research:
Thorough research of the location has always been one of the primary criteria before the construction of any infrastructure begins. However, this geospatial research of the location was previously conducted to ensure safe construction, durability, and usage of the economic structure. Currently, civil consultancy companies in India and around the world are also making sure that the ecological balance in and around construction sites are not tampered due to the building of an economic structure.
2. Eco-friendly Materials and Process:
The construction process is another important aspect of erecting any economic infrastructure. Materials are closely scrutinized to check its ecological viability, erosive, and/or corrosive properties so that any negative environmental impact can be avoided in the future. Along with ensuring the compatibility of the construction process with stipulated cost and time, infrastructure consultants also research and determine its effect on the natural surrounding.
3. Increased Focus on Green Energy:
The overuse and depletion of fossil fuels have resulted in large-scale pollution worldwide. To mitigate this crisis, government bodies are investing more in the development and installation of infrastructure that caters to harnessing solar, wind, and hydel power to generate energy. With the advent of the idea of electric vehicles, future infrastructure plans consist of highways with the ability to charge electric cars via solar power. Currently, with a capacity of 33.730 GW, solar power is the fastest growing industry in India, followed by wind energy. Offering electricity and fuel to multiple areas across the country, numerous houses in both urban and rural areas can be witnessed with varied cost-effective solar products. The engineering expertise of infrastructure consultants has proved to be a positive catalyst in the growth of the green energy industry in the country.
4. Sustainability is the New Power:
Infrastructure is the backbone of any city, state, and country. It is created in accordance with its surrounding terrain and climate. And, it is the first thing that receives the blow of any natural catastrophe or climactic upheaval. Now, with the predictions of increased sea-level rise due to polar meltdown because of global warming, the uncertainty of a natural disaster and/or sharp climactic shifts has increased. In the current world, sustainability is not just a noble vision but a necessity. And, it starts with re-innovating infrastructure design ideas. Blending nature with structure, the design of highways, bridges, tunnels, and other economic infrastructures are going through a sea change. While highways incorporate rainwater harvesting systems and solar-powered street lights, tunnels through forest areas are constructed in a way that creates a green overpass to restore the safe movement of wild animals.
5. Natural Infrastructure:
Sustainability has further broadened the scope of infrastructure. Apart from building environment-friendly structures, engineers, scientists, NGOs, governments, and business leaders worldwide are now coming together to think much ahead of the current time and make use of the often economically disregarded natural landscapes. Research is being conducted to explore the possibility of utilizing natural landscapes to reduce damages done by catastrophes and/or restoring natural resources. Termed as natural infrastructure, it involves the construction of wetlands for wastewater treatment; oyster reefs, and seagrass beds to prevent coastal erosion and storms; permeable pavements, rainwater harvesting systems, rain gardens, and bioswales to reduce flooding, and many other innovative ideas and designs that have the potential to not just restore air and water quality, and biodiversity but also offer expansion of the tourism industry. Sustainability is the key factor that steers modern economic infrastructure to strike the necessary ecological balance.