ecological buildingsEtienne Hoeckx is one of the first bio-ecological architects in Flanders (from 1979) In the early years it was an item that few worried. Now we can see that green building is recognized generaly. We only can be happy about. On the other hand, we also see that nowadays the term 'ecological' is used even unfairly. For example products are sold "with a small amount of fossil fuels', a euphemism for oil-based products. We don’t use synthetic insulation as primary insulation and opt resolutely for mineral or renewable materials. Where available we use products with a low carbon footprint. (Read more in the following page on from cradle to cradle). The late prof.Patfoort had developed a method to develop mineral monomers with lots of potential. We hope that his work will be continued.
Today, the concept ‘ecological building’ also seems reduced to applying insulation, but that is only part of the story. We better name it ‘energy efficient building’ . It is of course very important to reduce the use of fossil fuels drastically . Can we be satisfied with the situation, that we still have enough oil and gas to win for a few decades, closing our eyes to the impact for the next generation? Really?
Since 2006 in the Flanders buildings should meet the EPB (Energy Performance Regulations) In 2006 the standard K45 and E100 was demanded. Anno 2014 it is K 40 and E 60. These requirements are tightened each year. So in 2020 in Flanders zero-energy buildings will be demanded, in the Brussels region in 2015! We strive to K15 and K30 at E 45 and E30 in our designs. This is achievable both in masonry and in wooden structures.
Conserving water is also important. Rainwater can be collected in cisterns and reused.. Where possible, we will advise reed ponds to collect the ‘gray water’ Even the heat shower water is collectable. Remarkable technical solutions are at our disposal.