In the United States, buildings account for:

  • 39 percent of total energy use
  • 12 percent of the total water consumption
  • 68 percent of total electricity consumption
  • 38 percent of the carbon dioxide emissions
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. Potential benefits of green building can include:

Environmental benefits

  • Enhance and protect biodiversity and ecosystems
  • Improve air and water quality
  • Reduce waste streams
  • Conserve and restore natural resources
Economic benefits
  • Reduce operating costs
  • Create, expand, and shape markets for green product and services
  • Improve occupant productivity
  • Optimize life-cycle economic performance
Social benefits
  • Enhance occupant comfort and health
  • Heighten aesthetic qualities
  • Minimize strain on local infrastructure
  • Improve overall quality of life