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Sustainable Building Technical Manual

July 30, 1996


WASHINGTON, D.C. — A new manual produced jointly by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), Public Technology, Inc. (PTI), the U.S. Green Building Council (USBGC), and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency shows how to design, operate, and maintain environmentally friendly buildings. 

Note: The entire manual is available here in PDF format for downloading. It is 292 pages long, and 3.1 MB in size.  

= pdf =Acrobat Reader, available free from Adobe, is needed to read PDF files. 

The Sustainable Building Technical Manual: Green Building Design, Construction, and Operations is one of the most comprehensive publications now available to help architects, developers, building owners, government officials, and others implement sustainable development practices. It contains more than 300 pages of practical, step-by-step advice on sustainable buildings written by some of the foremost experts in the field. 

Among the issues the book addresses are the economics of green building; pre-design strategies; passive solar design; heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning systems; electricity; plumbing; indoor air quality; acoustics; selection of building and landscaping materials; and housekeeping. 

Sustainable development is a strategy through which communities seek economic development approaches that also benefit the local environment and quality of life. 

"Sustainable development allows economic progress and environmental quality to be compatible goals," said Christine Ervin, [former] DOE assistant secretary for energy efficiency and renewable energy. "Communities are finding that sustainable development strategies save taxpayer money, improve the profits of local businesses, and make the community much more livable." 

According to PTI president Costis Toregas, advances in building, recycling, and conservation technology are putting the goals of sustainability within easy reach of most communities. "New technological breakthroughs allow local governments to more effectively conserve and safeguard energy and natural resources," Toregas said. "By those actions—not in spite of them—cities and counties can tone their economic muscle in an increasingly competitive world, and leave future generations the asset base necessary for their prosperity." 

Printed copies of this publication are available for purchase through the PTI Publications Center at You also can reach the Publications Center by calling (800) 784-8976, faxing your request to (301) 604-0158, or sending e-mail to Copies can also be downloaded from this website by clicking here

PTI is the non-profit technology research and development organization of the National League of Cities, the National Association of Counties, and the International City/County Management Association. Now in its 25th year, PTI is dedicated to creating and advancing technology-based services and products in local and state government and is committed to sustainable development. 

DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy funded the manual. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency also provided financial support. 

Contact: Christopher Powers, DOE, (303) 275-4742, or Michael Wood-Lewis, PTI, (202) 626-2455.

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