Sustainability is a concept centered on satisfying the needs of current generations without compromising the ability of future generations to satisfy theirs. Sustainability has become a major talking point in several forums throughout the world just like the recently concluded Rio+20 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio de Janeiro in June last year. More and more emphasis is being placed on projects that have sustainability at their core. Geodesic domes have been widely associated with sustainability in many contexts. The following is an explanation of why geodesic domes are considered sustainable.
Geodesic domes are manifestations of a man's dream to improve the housing for humanity. In fact this man, Robert Buckminister Fulller, spent two decades trying to do just that until he settled for the amazing geodesic domes. Geodesic domes are spherical and sometimes semi spherical structures with an outer shell made up of a series of triangles which contribute to its enormous structural strength and integrity. Geodesic domes have a number of uses including housing, storage, entertainment spots and sporting locations just to mention a few. A huge majority of geodesic domes are used as houses; popularly referred to as geodesic dome homes.
Geodesic domes are considered sustainable for a number of reasons. Firstly, they have relatively higher energy efficiency. Secondly, they can be made without using wood. Thirdly, they are resistant to all kinds of natural calamities. Finally, they produce little or no waste.
Extravagant energy consumption puts a strain on earth's natural resources. This strain has produces a negative ripple effect. Contemporary housing structures are not designed to improve energy efficiency. With geodesic domes however, you are guaranteed of a 50% or more increase in energy efficiency. It costs lower to light or heat up a geodesic dome. This not only reduces the costs on energy consumption but also minimizes the environmental footprint.
Geodesic domes offer the builder so many choices on the materials to be used for construction. This means that wood is no longer a building material that cannot be avoided during construction. Alternatives to wood in geodesic domes include plastics and metallic alloys. Geodesic domes assembled without using wood protects precious trees from wanton destruction. Protection of trees goes a long way in preserving the planet earth that we live on.
Other than their aerodynamics, geodesic domes do not have roof or truss structures that act as recipes for disaster in the event a natural calamity strikes. Moreover, they have tremendous strength which ensures that stress such as wind loads are distributed throughout the entire structure. All these make geodesic domes to be resistant to natural calamities and therefore suitable housing options for people living in disaster prone areas and in the coast.
Geodesic domes produce virtually no waste materials. First of all, a huge majority of geodesic domes are delivered as SIPs to be assembled by companies. These companies use materials with low embodied energy optimized for waste reduction in a controlled environment. Any waste that is produced is often recycled.