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|Green schools are far more than a large garden with plenty of shade: they are the first step in the education of students to become healthy and responsible global citizens|
Do Viet Chien, general secretary of the Vietnam Real Estate Association emphasised at a workshop on green schools that, “If you want to have a green city, it needs to have green buildings including green schools that begin with the future in mind, designing a learning experience for students that will prepare them to lead the world toward a healthier, cleaner, and more sustainable future."
According to the Vietnam Green Building Council (VGBC) over the past decade, Vietnamese cities have been gradually becoming greener, but there is still a long way to go and many obstacles to overcome.
“There has been a massive increase in construction works. To raise the demand for green building, we will require not only awareness but an accurate understanding of the costs and benefits of green buildings, as well as the government to move towards encouraging green building development through incentives and green building codes,” said Chien.
In 2010, the VGBC introduced LOTUS, the first green building rating system tailored for Vietnam’s building regulations, climate conditions, and construction practices. Now LOTUS contains many systems that cover most building types, including non-residential, multi-family residential, existing buildings, single-family homes, small buildings, and interior fit-out projects. LOTUS serves as a framework and a planning tool to create healthy, environmentally friendly, and cost-saving buildings.
|Genesis School receiving LOTUS green school certificate|
Do Thuy Chi, vice chairman of Capital House Board, the investor of Genesis School, said that green schools are not only school buildings with green walls or a huge garden with many plants. It is more of a method of contextual education integrated with the environment and nature.
Genesis School is the first school project initiated by Capital House Group that applies green building criteria towards the school’s mission of “Nurturing A Green Future”. Genesis School aims to create a green community among teachers, parents, and students to practice “green education” and “green lifestyle” by sustainable action.
Chi added that green projects not only bring added value to residents but also build the Capital House brand. "We balance the purpose, benefit, and profit that we get from green real estate investment. Normally, the payback time will be 6-7 years for green buildings. For green schools, it will be 12 years, which is completely acceptable if we look at the future values they bring, and we are proud of promoting green schools first in Vietnam."