CHENNAI: Today politicians, industrialists and developers advocate going green, but what truly strikes a chord is when ordinary folk adopt this successfully. Such as in the case of 79-year old UVK Rao, who has built India’s first green home, rated ‘Platinum’ by LEED.
An environment consultant by profession, UVK Rao believes that ‘Reduce, reuse, recycle’ is the way to go and his home in Chennai reflects that. Step into his home and the first thing you will notice is the beautiful and spacious corridor with a well-lit living room lit up by the sunlight streaming through the 100 windows spread across the building.
Nearly 90% of the materials used for construction were locally procured, including furniture made from packaged wood bought for just Rs 10 per kilogram. The extra cost incurred in constructing such a house is in fact 15% lesser than any other building of the same size!
The Raos do not have a metro water connection as their 50,000-litre capacity tanks and efficient rainwater harvesting system takes care of their needs. A 3.75Kw solar panel saves the Raos over Rs 35,000 per year and coupled with high-efficient LED bulbs, they pay absolutely no electricity bills!
They even use a solar cooker to make dal and rice, which the Raos say is much tastier than if made with a pressure cooker.
A 160-feet long trough along the compound wall is dotted with plants and the refuse from the kitchen and washrooms is let here. The home is an inspiration for each one of us to go green, reduce our carbon footprint and at the same time pad our bank account while living a healthy life.
Edited By Nikhil Narayan Sivadas