Can Clearing the Home Site Be…Green?

Clearing a site to build a home is inevitable. Anyone can cut trees and move dirt. Clearing a site, reducing the impact on the surrounding land and building a home with green building practices takes talent.

Whenever a home is to be built a team of clearing experts is summoned to perform land improvement duties in an environmentally sensitive way. The first step is identifying the location of where the home is to be built. Once the location for the foot print of the home has been identified one can begin the process of marking which trees must be removed so that construction may begin. Most commonly any tree with in 25′ of the home will need to be removed. The trees within the 25′ need to be removed for several reason, though not limited to the reasons below.

  1. If they are not removed their feeder roots, which are usually toward the top where the fertile soil is, will be trampled and compressed by machinery. The tree will die as a result of compressed feeder roots.
  2. Trees will seek moisture and the foundation drains can drown the trees by displacing too much moisture toward the trees left.
  3. Trees will interfere with the foundation and compromise the structural integrity of the home.

There is a need to to be sensitive to land in the clearing process. What used to be considered waste can be maximized and used in alternative ways promoting a Green process. The following is a good example of best practices in land clearing.

Mark the trees out side of the clearing perimeter with a bi-degradable flagging system

Removing the top soil for re-installation at rough-grade is a good use of resources.

Removing the top soil and establishing a way to control and stabilize remaining soil and silt run off that can choke oxygen levels in lakes and streams is essential. This stabilization is completed thru a silt fence

Sending the logs from the trees to the saw mill promotes efficient use of resources. Sending branches and unused timber to a mill so they can produce mulch is an efficient use of resources.

Tree stumps are cut to the lowest point and remain the only unusable waste.

Not bad for efficiency! One thing you can count on is if your builder promotes best practices during the lot clearing phase, more than likely they will do the rest throughout the entire building process.

Going Green is not just about materials being green but also practices and efficiency. The whole package can be green by maximizing the resources available.

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