When you're trying to create a sustainable new home or renovation then using low maintenance building materials to limit the environmental impact over the life, is important.
Assessing different building materials on the basis of the energy used in their manufacture is one thing. But the energy consumed over their life - and the emissions produced - during maintenance, repair and replacement, is another important consideration.
Common repair and maintenance issues are:
This article looks at:
building materials that don't need frequent painting
materials that are resistant to cracking, moisture and termites
materials and building approaches that stand up to fire and cyclone