Global population growth projections will drive the need for increased resource consumption that will stress water supplies and worsen the global warming problem. Choices made today in planning for growth and practices implemented to reduce resource consumption will determine the resiliency of our communities and whether or not we add to the production of greenhouse gasses and degradation of water supplies. Principles of Green Building and Smart Growth are tools to reduce resource consumption and create communities that are more adaptable and resilient as we face global warming and the effects of climate change.
The buildings in which we live, work, and play protect us from nature's extremes, yet they also 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.
EPA Smart Growth Website
EPA helps communities grow in ways that expand economic opportunity, protect public health and the environment, and create and enhance the places that people love. This site has information related to smart growth including: research, tools, partnerships, case studies, grants, and technical assistance.
EPA Smart Growth Network
The Smart Growth Network (SGN) is a partnership of government, business and civic organizations that support smart growth. Since its creation in late 1996, the Network has become a storehouse of knowledge about smart growth principles, facilitating the sharing of best practices and acting as a catalyst for implementation of ideas.
EPA Urban Heat Island Effect Information
For millions of Americans living in and around cities, heat islands are of growing concern. This phenomenon describes urban and suburban temperatures that are 2 to 10°F (1 to 6°C) hotter than nearby rural areas. Fortunately, there are common-sense measures that communities can take to reduce the negative effects of heat islands.
EPA WaterSense Program
Saving water also saves energy because it takes energy to deliver water. Look for the WaterSense label to choose quality, water-efficient products.
EPA Energy Star Program
Energy Star is a joint program of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy helping us all save money and protect the environment through energy efficient products and practices.
EPA GreenScapes Program
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) GreenScapes program provides cost-efficient and environmentally friendly solutions for landscaping. Designed to help preserve natural resources and prevent waste and pollution, GreenScapes encourages companies, government agencies, other entities, and homeowners to make more holistic decisions regarding waste generation and disposal and the associated impacts on land, water, air, and energy use.
U.S. Green Building Council
The U.S. Green Building Council is a 501(c)(3) non-profit community of leaders working to make green buildings available to everyone within a generation. The USGBC manages the LEED Green Building Rating System.
National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Model Green Home Building GuidelinesNAHB's voluntary Model Green Home Building Guidelines are designed to be a tool kit for the individual builder looking to engage in green building practices and home builder associations (HBAs) looking to launch their own local green building programs.
International Economic Development Council report: Economic Development and Smart Growth
Economic development success and smart growth can go hand-in-hand. IEDC’sEconomic Development and Smart Growth presents eight case studies on communities that incorporated smart growth principles in their development projects and have experienced economic development improvements in the form of increased tax revenue, more jobs, higher income levels, downtown revitalization, business growth, and other indicators of economic success.
International Conservation Code (ICC) Green Building website
Highlights of the forthcoming ICC/NAHB National Green Building Standard, development of Green Building Certification for Inspectors, and other related information.
Green Cross International
The mission of Green Cross International is to help ensure a just, sustainable and secure future for all by fostering a value shift and cultivating a new sense of global interdependence and shared responsibility in humanity's relationship with nature. Programs include: Preventing and resolving conflicts over natural resources, Addressing the environmental consequences of wars and conflicts, and Promoting values and behavior changes.
Also visit Global Green USA
Founded in 1993 by activist and philanthropist Diane Meyer Simon, Global Green is the American Arm of Green Cross International (GCI), which was created by President Mikhail S. Gorbachev to foster a global value shift toward a sustainable and secure future by reconnecting humanity with the environment.