The buildings in which we live, work, and play protect us from nature's extremes, yet they affect our health and environment in countless ways. As the environmental impact of buildings becomes more apparent, a new field called "green building" is gaining momentum.
Green, or sustainable, building is the practice of creating and using healthier and more resource-efficient models of construction, renovation, operation, maintenance and demolition.
The built environment has a vast impact on the natural environment, human health and the economy. By adopting green building strategies, we can maximize both economic and environmental performance.
Green construction methods can be integrated into buildings at any stage, from design and construction, to renovation and deconstruction. However, the most significant benefits can be obtained if the design and construction team takes an integrated approach from the earliest stages of a building project:
Enhance and protect biodiversity and ecosystems.
Improve air and water quality.
Reduce waste streams.
Conserve and restore natural resources.
Reduce operating costs.
Create, expand, and shape markets for green product and services.