Sustainable housing development and environmental management

The world population demographics are greatly changing such as age and urbanization which influence housing consumption. The world’s rapid rate of urbanization continues to increase pressure on housing infrastructure in urban areas. This has led to the growth of slums and informal settlements due to inadequate affordable housing facilities.

High demand for housing consumption has increased demand for land as a resource and extraction of natural resources for housing development. On the other hand, the sprawl of informal settlement provided contribute to environmental degradation through waste disposal. Housing development has also encroached forest protection and water catchment areas compromising environmental sustainability.

There has been overexploitation of natural resources such as land, water, and energy to support the housing sector and therefore the need to integrate environmental sustainability into development policies. There should be sustainable extraction of resources to ensure the resources are available for use by both the current and future generations.

The concept of sustainability in housing as shelter should be in harmony with the natural environment. Sustainable housing ensures; appropriate use of land and its resources, efficient use of water, energy, and other resources. It should also enhance human health by ensuring proper waste disposal, protection of cultural, agricultural, and archaeological resources, conservation of endangered species, and strengthen local economies and community

Sustainable housing should majorly focus on energy management. Responsible use of energy is critical to sustainability and is an environmental concern. Energy management should ensure efficiency and advocate for renewable sources and minimize energy-related pollution. Suitable design and building should maximize on natural temperature and light control

Waste management should be enhanced to minimize consumer demand for products that generate hazardous waste and to practice the conservation of resources. The waste reduction should also be enhanced by limiting the use of packaged products and disposable products

Air and water quality through the protection of water sources and sustainable use should be promoted through pollution control and enhancing both indoor and outdoor air quality

Therefore, governments and development partners should ensure environmental aspects are integrated into development policies and programmes for the prosperity of both environment and housing sector to actualize sustainable development agenda.

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