In a continuing effort toadvance the use of environmentally responsible techniques and technologies in residential construction, the NAHB, the International Code Council (ICC), and the NAHB Research Center are close to attaining final approval for an American National Standards Institute (ANSI) standard for green home building construction practices. After completion of the ANSI process, the National Green Building Standard will be promulgated as a joint publication between the NAHB and ICC.
The standard defines the way that land can be developed as an integral part of a total green community and provides a scoring mechanism for having developments certified green. Builders and developers will be able to get their existing or new developments certified green while choosing from a wide array of options such as natural features, topography, and landscaping to accomplish a green development.
Land development techniques that cluster homes in proximity to each other and preserve trees, wetlands, and other natural amenities can be very attractive to potential home buyers, can limit the environmental impact of residential projects, and can score points in the green certification process. With a green development, developers can expect to see an increased ability to sell land to their builder customers; builders will enjoy the benefits of an increased customer base; and the community at large will benefit from the decreased impact on the environment.
Once the standard is available publicly, many types of projects including multifamily buildings, remodeling, and subdivisions will be able to be certified green under the National Green Building Certification Program. Currently, only single-family homes can be certified under the national program. The Online Green Scoring Tool—located at www.nahbgreen.org/ScoringTool.aspx—is the first step builders and developers can take to evaluate their existing or proposed projects. The scoring tool provides information about the why and how of green building at every step.
For a draft of the National Green Building Standard, visit www.nahbrc.org. For more information on the National Green Building Certification Program, call 877-NAHB-GRN (877-624-2476).