Development Benefits & Basic Elements
Developers often equate green development with reduced profits
and delayed schedules. On the contrary, however, green development
projects often "perform extremely well financially,"
according to the Rocky Mountain Institute, and often command
a price premium in the marketplace. There are many additional
benefits of building green, as well, including lower operating
costs for residents, increased comfort, higher perceived value,
reduced sprawl, and protection of the natural environment.
The elements of green development fall into three basic categories:
environmental responsiveness, resource efficiency, and community
and cultural sensitivity. Thus, green development projects consider
siting and land-use issues; conserve energy, water, and other
precious resources; provide a healthy and comfortable indoor
space through the use of reused and recycled products, as well
as energy- and resource-efficient products; blend in with the
natural environment and protect open space; increase a sense
of community; and address cultural issues.
The following resources provide more information on the benefits
and basic elements of green development. For additional information,
see our section on Guiding Principles.
Well by Doing Good -- Benefits of Green Development"
Illustrates the benefits of green development approaches
through an excerpt of Green Development: Integrating Ecology
and Real Estate, a book produced by the Rocky Mountain Institute.
Summary and Benefits Associated with Green Development Approaches
Provides a compendium of examples, case studies, and issues
related to urban development and the implementation of Green
Development. EPA's Oceans and Coastal Protection Division (OCPD).
Development Benefits, Community
Outlines the Green Building Alliance's perspective on the multiple
advantages that green development offers for strengthening communities.
Design Can Be An Asset to the Bottom Line"
Reviews studies that indicate that increased efficiency and
worker productivity associated with sustainable design can have
a major positive impact on company profits."
Green Building Council Research Compendium on the Benefits of
Green Buildings and Development
Provides access to multiple research documents and presentations
on the benefits of green development in economic, environmental,
and social terms.
Practice of Sustainable Development (publication by
the Urban Land Institute)
Analyzes the concept of sustainable development and the relationships
between sustainable development and ecology, economic development,
and social equity. Specific topics covered include site design,
financing, building systems, marketing, and approval processes.
the Business Benefits of Sustainable Buildings"
Aims to define the business benefits arising from sustainable
construction techniques through case studies. (PDF file.)
for Land Use Education's "A Look At Conservation Subdivisions
Outlines the potential benefits of conservation subdivision
to a community.
Economic Benefits of Parks and Open Space: How Land Conservation
Helps Communities Grow Smart and Protect the Bottom Line
A report from the Trust for Public Land that describes how communities
around the country are learning that open space conservation
and green development are an investment that produces important
of a Green Building - City of San Jose, CA
Offers the perspective of a city government agency on the benefits
of Green Development.
British Columbia Fact Sheet and Background on Alternative Development
Provides an array of potential benefits for creating and maintaining
municipal infrastructure by use Green Development approaches.
Market for Green Development"
Describes consumer preference for green buildings and developments,
as well as the profitability and marketability of such projects.
An excerpt from Green Development: Integrating Ecology and
Elements of Green Development"
Describes the common features of green development projects.
An excerpt of Green Development: Integrating Ecology and
Benefits of Smart Growth
A section of EPA's smart growth website discusses environmental
benefits of smart growth development approaches.
Last updated: January 30, 2004
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