THE NAHB AND THE NAHB RESEARCH Center are making it easier for home builders to construct more resource-efficient and cost-effective housing across the nation. The Model Green Home Building Guidelines, which are slated for completion by the end of this year, will help mainstream green building practices throughout the home building industry.
The NAHB contracted with the NAHB Research Center to facilitate the guidelines' development process, gather input via a consensus process from the stakeholder group recently announced at the 2004 National Green Building Conference (NGBC), and deliver a valuable and practical set of guidelines to the mainstream home building industry. NAHB Research Center president Michael Luzier says, “These guidelines will empower builders and local HBAs with information on green building so they don't have to reinvent the wheel. We are proud to be a part of the process.”
Development of the guidelines marks the first effort to provide a nationally recognized base line for determining minimum “green” thresholds for the home building industry. Though home builders nationwide have been building with high levels of resource efficiency and environmental performance for more than 30 years and there are several well-established green building programs across the country, never before have these green practices evolved into a single, written set of guidelines for the benefit of the entire industry.
The 59 members of the stakeholder group announced at the NGBC represent large and small builders, manufacturers, architects, environmentalists, government agencies, suppliers, and other groups with significant expertise in green building issues. Ray Tonjes, NAHB Green Building Subcommittee chair and a home builder from Austin, Texas, says, “The stakeholders' participation is key to ensuring that the guidelines are comprehensive and worthwhile for the entire home building industry.” The group will convene in small subgroups during the year to address all aspects of green building, including lot planning and design, resource efficiency, water and energy efficiency, indoor environmental quality, and homeowner education.