Any change that you introduce to the world is going to have at least a minimal impact on the immediate environment. If you are building a new home, take a look at the surrounding area and ask yourself how your efforts will change the area. Then, use the tips below to help you reduce the impact your new home has on the environment, both immediately and in the long term.
Consider Building into the Landscape
If it is at all possible, why not build you home into the landscape? Put your home in the side of a hill rather than digging out a flat area. You will reduce your impact on the environment, but you'll also find that your home is well insulated, or at least well insulated in the area that is built into the hill.
Replant What You Pull Up
In the process of creating your new dwelling, you may have to pull up some plants and/or cut down some trees. In some situations that can't be helped. Avoid pulling up or cutting down anything if you can, but if not, be sure to replant the same species. Introducing a new species of tree or plant to the area may not have a positive impact on your immediate environment.
Use Hydro Excavation
When you dig your well, put in your power lines, and do any other things that really only require a straight drop rather than a sloped opening, use hydro excavation. Hydro excavation uses a combination of pressurized water and a vacuum system to remove soil only from the area where you need it removed. This means you won't have large sloped holes that can change the terrain completely. Instead, you'll have openings only where you need them, reducing the impact on the environment and making it easy for the holes to be filled in at the same time.
Use Pads Under Heavy Equipment
If you have to use heavy equipment on your land, be sure to ask the operators to place pads under the equipment to reduce soil erosion and prevent any oil or other chemicals from leaking into the ground while the equipment is sitting there. Otherwise, your building efforts can impact the environment long after they are over.
If you have an interest in reducing your carbon footprint, be sure to look into ways you can make your home use fewer resources and have a positive impact on the environment instead of a negative one. Just remember that you can use the tips here to reduce your impact before you even move in.