La Casa G is a private non-profit venture, which aims to foster the rational use of materials, promote good environmental practices, energy saving and sustainability in Latin America. The developer’s objective was to prove that it is not only possible but also convenient to build using sustainable technologies and techniques.
The letter G is derived from the initials of Green, Gaia and Galileo, three key references regarding contact with the environment, the connection with Earth and respect for the planet. Gaia is the name given by the ancient Greeks to the Earth goddess, which was recently used to name scientist James Lovelock’s hypothesis, in which he considers the planet as a living being, that is, as a large intertwined system composed of oceans, forests, atmosphere, animals and plants.
Nowadays, a modern sustainable construction has a higher cost than that of a traditional one. In other countries this difference is financed either by a green credit, economic incentives granted by the government, energy companies, etc. In Argentina this overrun has to be financed by the owner. Therefore, it is essential to identify and value the costs of such ventures, measure the power consumption and other resources in real time, to calculate the recovery of investment in green technologies and to quantify the savings over time.
Main Sustainable Features of La Casa G:
• Bio-climatic design. Development, positioning, orientation of the building and interior distribution to achieve optimal inside thermal comfort. Cross ventilations, shades, passive heating & cooling techniques and natural lighting systems.
• Efficient thermal insulations in walls, ceilings, openings and windows.
• Doors and floors made from FSC certified wood and/or forest crops.
• Use of renewable energy. The house runs entirely on electricity.
• Smart metering technology to measure electricity and water usage.
• Home automation and intelligent use of energy.
• Roof windows and solar tunnels for natural daylight illumination.
• LED lighting.
• Aerothermal heating: LG´s Therma-V with inverter technology.
• Water heating with solar thermal energy: 4 solar collectors.
• Energy provided by 12 photovoltaic panels.
• Sectorized radiant floor heating: healthier and more efficient.
• Fireplace with double combustion chamber.
• Drinking water filtering by reverse osmosis device.
• Water saving: high performance faucets and showers with built-in diffusers and Roca´s “eco click” system. Dual flush toilets.
• High efficiency water pumps. Grundfos SQFlex solar water pump.
• Rain water harvesting for uses not requiring potable water: Irrigation, toilets flush, house and car cleaning.
• Recovery and reuse of gray water from showers, sinks and laundry. Since our country has no regulation on this matter, our system is based on California State, US regulations.
• Sewage water treatment using a biodigestor device.
• Advanced weather station with air quality (Co2) monitoring.
• Eco swimming pool with a minimum use of energy and chlorine, combining Finnish overflow system, solar pump, intelligent filtering & cleaning (Dolphin robot) and water ionization. Passive water heating from solar radiation over dark colored coating and active heating using exceeding heat form solar water collectors.
• Low VOC (Volatile Organic Compounds) paint.
• Most materials are FSC certified, Energy Star compliant, ISO 14001 certified or made from renewable or recycled materials.
• Garbage separation in kitchen and laundry.
• Composting facilities and earthworm composting.
• Energy and water saving appliances.
• Lawn maintenance using only electric powered tools.
• Battery charging stations and rechargeable batteries management.
• Garage fitted to recharge electric powered vehicles.
• Drip irrigation, sprinklers and nitrifying beds. Rain sensor.
• Greenhouse Annex integrated to the house.
• Organic vegetable garden.
• Astronomy observatory and control room integrated into the house. Fiberglass dome. It is important to become aware of the huge proportions of the cosmos and the relatively small size of our planet. As far as we know, Earth is the only planet in our solar system containing water in liquid form.
• Sustainable management of the project: Selection of professionals and suppliers according to the quality and sustainability of their products, services, industrial processes and proximity of their production facilities or distribution centers to the construction site. In many cases we teamed with our sponsors to developed and/or launch new sustainable products or services in Argentina. The initial stage of the project was promoted using only digital media and 100% recycled paper.
• Sustainable management of construction site: Construction of workshop and perimeter fence using FSC certified wood or other materials that were later reused. For example, the wood used in the siege of the work was reused for the construction of raised garden beds, composters, earthworm composters and furniture. Classification and disposal of waste generated during construction, etc.
La Casa G is a content factory. For the next years, the developer will publish articles and give lectures explaining the benefits of living in a sustainable home. All project information, details of technologies implementation and related material is available through the website www.lacasag.com and Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google+and Pinterest social networks.
To achieve its objective, La Casa G is supported by almost 80 companies that stand out for the quality and sustainability of their products and services: LG Electronics Argentina, Grupo Climax, Roca Argentina, Elster Metering, Industrias Saladillo, Grundfos, ABB S.A., Enertik, Vetroluce, Velux, H2O Design, Shawer, Maytronics (Dolphin), Aisa Ionic S.A. (Pura & KOR), Tromen, Cambre (iHaus), Smappee, AFtech (iRobot Roomba & Parrot Flower Power), Alvarez Lonas, Dickson, El Indio, Ecosoluciones, Aguasclaras, Faplac, Canteras del Mundo (Silestone), Marcarlas, Motores DAF, Smooothway,Sustentator, Rehau, Rotoplas, Ctibor, Oblak, Mastropor, Kalciyan, Wellpac, Alsig XXI, Grupo DAP, Radog, Sitex, Patagonia Flooring, Navarro Ache (ILVA), SurPool Piscinas, Novoplack, Trato Hecho, Aqua2use, Pinturerías Rex, Maderera Lavallol, Impacto Inmobiliaria, Hormigonera Cañuelas, Curto Martins, Casa Fatima, Abelson, Agroredes, Fiebre Web design, Duoptic & Espacio Profundo, Velayos Electricidad, LPD Argentina, Carrier Argentina, Ediner, NB instalaciones, Sika Argentina, Marmolería Alvarez, Toyota Argentina, Inti Zen & Chamana, Qero ecovasos, La Mersa, Estudio V, Loly Albasini, Krethaus, El Espartano, 3R ideas, Cámara Argentina de la Construcción, Sociedad de Arquitectura Sustentable and Argentina Green Building Council.