Green Building Programs
Green building is becoming more widespread both
as a solution to specific building-related problems, and as
a means of working toward a sustainable future. Community green
building programs such as the following are making great strides
toward promoting public acceptance of green building and its
benefits, as well as encouraging builders to adopt green building
practices. While some green building programs are sponsored
by state or local government, others are administered by home
building industry associations or by other nonprofit groups.
County, Virginia, offers both a Green Choice Home program
that promotes green residential construction and a Green Building
Incentive Program that requires all site plan applications in
the county to include a completed LEED scorecard.
a Better Kitsap program promotes environmentally
friendly construction, energy-saving concepts, and use of natural
resources in Kitsap County, Washington. The program establishes
"Code Plus" standards to improve a building's performance
and provide significant economic and environmental benefits
to the owner and future generations. Features include point
weighting for items, and a handbook with carefully linked content
areas and local resources.
Green is a program of the Master Builders Association
of King and Snohomish Counties, Washington designed to provide
Puget Sound homeowners with comfortable, durable, environmentally
friendly homes. The Built Green Checklist, the program's menu
of actions that builders use to certify homes, can be downloaded
as a PDF file.
Green Colorado was developed to highlight green builders
in the Denver Metro Region, which now applies statewide. The
program is voluntary and serves as a guide and a marketing tool
for homes that meet certain green criteria. Builders and remodelers
that participate in the program receive technical assistance,
discounts on educational seminars, and other benefits.
Green Builder Program is a voluntary program developed
by the Building Industry Institute that sets standards for improvements
in energy efficiency, reduction in air emissions, on-site waste
recycling and reduction in water use.
of Austin Green Building Program is a voluntary program
that certifies green homes on a scale of one to four stars,
with more stars being awarded to homes with more green features.
The program also provides assistance to building professionals,
such as architects, engineers, and builders, in exchange for
offering and promoting green building practices. For more information,
Builder Program: A Sustainable Approach"
City of Portland's
Green Building Program is an integrated, conservation-based
effort to promote resource-efficient building and sustainable
site design practices throughout the City. Coordinating the
expertise and resources of six City bureaus, this intiative
sets aggressive goals and recommends a carefully selected set
of strategies to leverage local expertise and develop cost-effective
solutions for builders, developers, and building owners and
House Program is a program of Georgia's Greater
Atlanta Home Builders Association that provides training, design
and construction technical assistance, marketing materials and
direct referrals to participating builders. Building projects
earn points by implementing a range of options for site planning,
energy efficiency, waste reduction, water conservation and indoor
Green Building Coalition Green Home Designation Standard
is a standard for green homes, available online in checklist
or complete form. The Florida Green Building Coalition also
has a broader Green Development Designation Standard.
Green Government Council, in Pennsylvania, offers High-Performance
Green Building Guidelines, as well as numerous online resources,
reports, and a green building database.
Building is a city program in San Jose, California that
has been created to encourage and facilitate new construction
or remodeling of homes or workplaces into spaces that are healthier
for people and the planet. Program policies are available online.
Design and Construction, a program of the California
Integrated Waste Management Board, not only provides information
for the sustainable construction of state facilities, but also
offers a Sustainable Building Tool Kit for project managers,
and green building case studies.
Building Guidelines is the second generation of sustainable
residential design guidelines from the Sustainable Buildings
Industry Council, in cooperation with the National Association
of Home Builders. With illustrations, case studies, and checklists,
the six-chapter book is a valuable resource for builders and
even buyers interested in producing or purchasing energy- and
resource-efficient homes. The book can be ordered from the Sustainable
Buildings Industry Council, which also offers a companion workshop.
Built Home, a green building initiative that reviews
and certifies homes that meet sustainable building and energy
standards, is a voluntary program of Wisconsin Environmental
Initiative and is sponsored by participating home builder associations
in cooperation with leading utilities, organizations that promote
green building and energy efficiency and the State of Wisconsin.
Points Building Program is a green builder program in
Boulder, Colorado that applies to both new construction and
remodeling projects. The Green Points New Home Program applies
to new construction and additions larger that 500 square feet,
and requires building permit applicants to earn "points"
by selecting optional measures in order to receive a building
permit. The Green Points Remodeling Program is voluntary and
applies to remodeling projects and additions less than 500 square
feet. Homeowners and contractors are encouraged to include as
many green options in their projects as possible.
BuiltGreen is a voluntary green building program
of the Hawaii Building Industry Association.
BEST! (Building Energy Efficient Structures Today),
a program of the Marin County Board of Supervisors, exists to
enhance energy efficiency and conservation in residential, commercial,
and community facilities. The program offers green building
guidelines, technical assistance, incentives and rebates.
Green Building Program works with county and municipal
planners to evaluate and modify codes, ordinances and policies
that foster green building and green development. Also coordinates
a traveling green building exhibit and sponsors workshops. Maryland
also offers a Green
Building Tax Credit on commercial construction.
Jersey Green Homes Office is working to fundamentally
improve the environmental performance, energy efficiency, quality,
and affordability of housing in New Jersey. Through advocacy,
education, and technical assistance they are accelerating the
use of innovative green design and building technologies, raising
building standards and creating consumer demand for efficient
and environmentally responsible high performance homes.
New York's Battery
Park City Green Guidelines establish a process for the
creation of environmentally responsible residential buildings
that are appreciably ahead of current standards and practices.
The guidelines, developed by the Hugh L. Carey Battery Park
City Authority, may be viewed in PDF format.
York State Green Building Initiative offers a tax incentive
program for developers and builders of environmentally friendly
Green Building Program, in Arizona, encourages a whole-systems
approach through design and building techniques to minimize
environmental impact and reduce the energy consumption of buildings
while contributing to the health of occupants. The program rates
homes on six environmental impacts.
Sustainable Building, at the City of Seattle, Washington,
implements the city's Sustainable Building Policy, provides
guidelines for city facilities, and offers technical assistance
The U.S. Green
Building Council is a nonprofit coalition of
1,500 leading companies, organizations, and federal/state/local
agencies advancing buildings that are "environmentally
repsonsible, profitable, and healthy places to live and work."
Members have developed the LEED rating system and third-party
certification system for new and existing commercial buildings, and high-rise residential
buildings. New products are being developed for homes and neighborhoods. USGBC also offers LEED training workshops
to Developing Green Builder Programs, a publication
and CD available from the National Association of Homebuilders
Research Center, analyzes six green building programs to determine
the most effective requirements and incentives, as well as details
like organizational structure and advertising budgets. Identifies
the necessary steps to create a program and includes a Green
Builder Program Template. NAHB Research Center also has an online
section on Local
Green Building Programs, with profiles of programs nationwide.
Construction: Green Building Guidelines are provided
by the Alameda County Waste Management Authority & Alameda
County Source Reduction and Recycling Board. A green building
materials resource guide is also available.
Monica Green Building Design & Construction Guidelines
were created by the City of Santa Monica to facilitate the development
of "green" buildings in Santa Monica without forcing
excessive costs or other burdens upon developers, building owners
or occupants. Santa Monica also operates a Green Building Resource Center open to the public.
Sustainable Building Sourcebook was created by the City
of Austin Green Building Program. Includes chapters on water,
energy, building materials, and solid waste.
U.S. Green Building Council
State and Local Government Tool Kit, released in November,
2002, is designed to assist state and local governments in developing
green building programs. The Tool Kit provides information on
existing green building programs and publications, particularly
those based on the LEED rating system, to serve as models and
resources for new programs. Information on starting a green
building program and adapting and adopting LEED is included.
Last updated: February 7, 2005
Back to Top