Tuesday, September 1, 2009

USGBC launches LEED for Homes affiliate program

The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) has announced the introduction of its new LEED for Homes Affiliate Program, allowing regional green home building providers to promote green residential building through partnerships with the non-profit.

The program's goal is to increase the availability of green housing stock and to increase sustainable design techniques and energy-efficiency in all dwellings.

"This is an important step forward as we advocate for full marketplace adoption of green home building," said Nate Kredich, vice president of residential market development for the USGBC. "One of the greatest benefits of the LEED green home certification program is its continual progress and flexibility. Through the LEED for Homes Affiliate Program, green residential programs can partner with us to further promote green homes."

So far, the HBA of Greater Dallas and Minnesota GreenStar have signed on for the program.

"Our association is committed to creating awareness and interest in green, high-performance and efficient homes through our Green Built Texas program, said Phil Crone, director of government affairs and green building programs for the HBA of Greater Dallas. "By becoming a LEED for Homes Affiliate, we are providing our members with another tool to remain competitive in a soft market."

According the the U.S. Department of Energy's Energy Information Administration, households account for 20 percent of the energy consumed in the U.S. and 21 percent of carbon emissions.

The department also reports that U.S. residential energy use has risen 34 percent since 1985 and estimates that 120 million homes need energy efficiency improvements and retrofits.

So far, more than 2,600 homes have been certified through LEED for Homes, with more than 18,000 currently in the certification process.

USGBC has 78 local affiliates, including a Cincinnati chapter.

Previous reading on BC:
USGBC issues call for ideas (7/28/09)
USGBC seeking public comment for LEED neighborhoods(5/19/09)
Public comment sought for new green neighborhood rating system (12/29/08)