This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.

January 26, 2005

Home Builders Set New National Guidelines for Green Homes

Photo of a small home.

This energy-efficient home in Texas demonstrates affordable green building.
Credit: Sustainable Living Alliance

The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) has introduced new voluntary guidelines to help mainstream homebuilders incorporate environmental practices into every phase of the home building process while putting a priority on housing affordability. NAHB unveiled the Model Green Home Building Guidelines during the International Builders' Show in Orlando, Florida, in early January. NAHB claims that green building has primarily been the province of high-end, niche builders who cater to a wealthy clientele, while the new guidelines aim to help builders construct resource-efficient homes that are both affordable and customized to local conditions. The guidelines offer voluntary, builder- and market-driven green solutions for lot design and preparation; resource, energy, and water efficiency; indoor environmental quality; operation, maintenance, and home owner operation; global impact; and site planning and land development. Developed for single-family homes, the guidelines also are applicable for multifamily and custom homes as well as remodeling projects for existing homes. See the NAHB press release and Model Green Home Building Guidelines.

The NAHB also introduced the Green Building Initiative, a new not-for-profit organization supported by groups and individuals interested in promoting energy efficient and environmentally sustainable practices in residential and commercial construction. See the Green Building Initiative Web site.

The new guidelines and the Green Building Initiative are sure to be important topics of discussion at the 2005 National Green Builders Conference, the only national conference targeted to green building for the mainstream residential building industry. The conference will be held in Atlanta, Georgia, in mid-March. See the conference announcement on the NAHB Web site.