Category Archives: Alternative Energy & Energy Conservation

Alternative energy methods including solar, wind and thermal options.

The Importance of Effective Household Plumbing

Bahamas Villa Photo Credit : Caribbean Land and Property

Bahamas Villa
Photo Credit : Caribbean Land and Property

According to the Caribbean Environment Programme, the effective management of wastewater is a huge challenge in the Wider Caribbean Region with up to 85% of untreated wastewater currently being discharged in rivers, bays and seas.

While current and prospective home owners can do very little about larger sources of waste like, factories and refineries we can certainly make a big difference by controlling our domestic sewage.
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Caribbean Water Cisterns

Grenada roof with guttering.

Grenada roof with guttering.
Photo Credit : Caribbean Land & Property

The cistern system utilised in the Caribbean is one of the most innovative and cost effective ways of capturing and storing large quantities of fresh rain water.

For the everyday Caribbean home owners, the cistern is merely an addition to the house. But, in fact, when we examine the secret life of a cistern – its appreciation is deepened and this multifaceted, pivotal part of every Caribbean homes’s functionality becomes simply – a blessing! Many islands experience water shortages during periods of low rainfall or unexpected water interruptions from the local water boards and then – old faithful, heroically, steps in and saves the day or even weeks!
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Five Ways To Trim Your Caribbean Villa’s Utility Costs

Five Ways To Trim Your Caribbean Villa’s Utility Costs

clp-blogWe are  all familiar with the evolution of Caribbean Villas and how comfort in the villas, during the summer, have changed. The older designs have huge wooden windows and doors which allow air and light freely inside – they also allow the ever changing, wide range of Caribbean moths which come out to play during summer nights. The more modern villas, those constructed over the last 10 years have catered to cool indoor air circulation with the windows and doors shut. This modern method is called air-conditioning and while it can prevent the un-welcomed winged friends, it can also be quite costly! Continue reading

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Building with Quartzite Stones

Building with Quartzite Stones in the Caribbean

White Quarzite tiles

White Quartzite tiles

Quartzite is a great alternative to mass produced ceramics and other common flooring options where durability and natural beauty are required.

Finishing touches to the floors of Caribbean properties can be a hectic phase for homeowners. The choice of flooring material is always dependent, firstly, on whether it is an indoor space (kitchen) or an outdoor space (garden paths or pools) and secondly the type of material that will give the best finish.

By choosing quartzite, you have a solution that gives both a first class finish and that is durable both indoors and outdoors. Additionally, it is easily accessible being available in Trinidad and Tobago!

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Energy Efficient Caribbean Home

5 Steps to create a Net-Zero Energy Home within the Caribbean

Creating a Net-Zero home

Creating a Net-Zero home

Moving to the Caribbean gives one the automatic option of living in harmony with nature. No, I don’t mean using large glass windows to bring outside in! We are talking about the harmony which nurtures, rebuilds and strengthens the environment that we live in.

You don’t have to attend the G2 Summit and place a vote to make your contribution – start with these simple five steps and create a Net-Zero Energy Home within the Caribbean Continue reading

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Clean Energy Island Style Must Replace Fossil Fuels

solar-panels-150

Caribbean Solar Panel Suppliers

The Caribbean islands are still far too dependent on imported fossil fuels for household, government and commercial energy supplies.

The region has some of the world’s most expensive per unit cost, which creates an economic vulnerability and fossil fuel dependency on other nations who don’t have the Caribbean’s best interest at heart.  Caribbean energy consumers pay between four to five times as much per unit of electricity as the continental USA and Europe. As an example Aruba used to spend 16% of its economy on importing 6,500 barrels of diesel fuel a day to generate electricity to serve 110,000 people.

This is changing, and as a result there are opportunities opening up on all the islands for alternative energy technology supply and support.

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Caribbean Beachfronts – Windy or Not?

Caribbean Beachfronts – Windy or Not?

What is the perfect position for a villa on a Caribbean island?

Caribbean Beachfronts - Windy or Not? Anguilla beachfront home.

Caribbean Beachfronts – Windy or Not? Anguilla beachfront home.

There are two clearly defined types of beachfront…leeward or sheltered, windward or open to the oncoming weather.

Building a house with a garden, or even a verandah that opens out onto a white sand beach paints a wonderful picture, but the reality of life on the beach is somewhat different.

90% of beaches are on the leeward side of the islands, sheltered from the big Atlantic rollers and storms which have carved the coastline to form rocky windward shores and small sandy coves.

 

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Earthbag Construction for Curved Designs

Earthbag Construction for Circles and Curved Designs

Earthbag construction is used for several very good reasons but one of them is the ability to create structures that are made up from flowing curves.

earthbag-guide-book-cover

Earthbag Construction

These curves can be on the horizontal, such as an elegantly curved wall.  Or they can be compound curves where the structure curves in both the horizontal and vertical plane at the same time, such as a dome structure.

To obtain the beauty of these curves with other traditional building materials used in the Caribbean is difficult.

Masonry can be arranged to create curves and if you are willing to pay for expensive form work it is also possible to create curves with poured concrete. However most other building materials are much better suited to creating straight vertical walls, and used for the majority of construction projects in the Caribbean.

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Puerto Rico Concrete Manufacturer Introduces New Eco Method

Puerto Rico Concrete Manufacturer Carmelo Introduces New Eco Construction Method

Puerto Rico Concrete Manufacturer

Puerto Rico Concrete Manufacturer – SCIP Construction

Several architects and contractors in the Puerto Rico have turned to a non-conventional method of construction. Although it has been in the market for over three decades, it is relatively new to many of our local Puerto Rico clients and contractors and the wider Caribbean construction industry.

In Europe it is a familiar practice and preferred by contractors.  This is mostly due to the time and cost savings implications both for the contractor and the end user.  Moreover, it is a system that provides for a much cleaner and eco friendly construction. The pre fabricated system is known as Structural Concrete Insulated Panel or SCIP.

 

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Caribbean Earth Bag Home Construction

Caribbean Earth Bag Home Construction  – Rum Cay Bahamas

earthbag-house-bahamas-walls

Caribbean earth bag home construction – Rum Cay Bahamas

Imagine building the castle of your dreams on a Caribbean island with…sand!  I don’t mean adding sand to cement and making a concrete home.  I mean from the pure materials at hand, in this case coral sand from dredging.  Introducing a couple who built their earth bag home in the Caribbean.

Builders, NGOs, research institutes, and governments are discovering the potential for using earthbags in affordable housing and emergency shelters. But so are those wanting to build a home for themselves and their families using local materials leaving as smaller carbon footprint as possible. Continue reading

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