KB Home met its 2009 goal to have all of its homes built in newly opened communities Energy Star qualified, according to the company’s 2009 Sustainability Report (PDF). Sixty-two percent of all homes (5,258) delivered in 2009, including in older communities, exceeded the company’s goal to have 50 percent ENERGY STAR qualified.
Since 2001, KB has built 55,407 ENERGY STAR qualified homes. Every Energy Star qualified home built by KB Home reduces greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) by approximately 2.6 metric tons per year compared to a standard new home, according to estimates from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
In 2008 alone, Energy Star-qualified homes reduced their annual utility bills by more than $250 million, which saved more than 1.5 billion kWh of electricity and 155 million therms of natural gas while reducing GHG emissions equivalent to nearly 350,000 cars annually, according to the EPA.
KB Home reduced its operational GHG emissions from 42,204 metric tons CO2-e in 2008 to 20,296 metric tons CO2-e in 2009. The company attributes the significant reduction to greater data accuracy, a broader sample that takes into account regional variances in the sources of electricity generation, and the company’s focus on reducing energy consumption in its business operations.
The home builder also surpassed its goal to add four environmentally-friendly products in 2009 to the standard features built into every home at no additional cost to home buyers. These include WaterSense labeled Moen bathroom lavatory faucets, dual-pane low-emissivity (low-E) windows, 100 percent recyclable carpets with Cradle-to-Cradle Silver Certification and low-VOC carpets with CRI Green Label Plus certification, low-VOC paint, Carrier Puron refrigerant-based HVAC systems, Carrier programmable thermostats, and high-efficiency MERV–8–rated air filters.
The company also achieved its goal to introduce at least four new optional products in 2009 that will help increase energy efficiency, reduce water consumption, increase indoor air quality or are made with sustainable sources.
These include upgraded varieties of WaterSense labeled Moen bathroom lavatory faucets, LED light fixtures from Sea Gull Lighting, recycled-content Emser Tile and Daltile tile and Mannington vinyl flooring that include at least 20 percent post-industrial recycled content, wood flooring free of endangered tree species and produced in the U.S., and energy-saving Whirlpool ranges.
KB Home partly met its commitment to launch its “My Home. My Earth” option packages to increase consumer adoption of environmentally-friendly choices and to help reduce their carbon footprint. Instead the company allows home buyers to create their own optional packages due to regional variations in climate and preferences as well as local regulations.
Focus areas for 2010 include water conservation and efficiency, which includes becoming the first national homebuilder to construct homes that meet the EPA’s new WaterSense for New Homes water efficiency specifications, reducing waste at job sites, and developing new building practices, materials and products to increase efficiency in its homes.
KB plans to introduce new standard and/or optional WaterSense products such as showerheads, faucets and toilets in 2010. The company will also develop a plan to reach 100 percent WaterSense products in every KB home. The company has built 7,193 Water Smart Homes since 2005.
According to the EPA, WaterSense labeled new homes use 20 percent less water than conventional new homes and save homeowners more than 10,000 gallons of water per year.
In March, KB Home announced that it is certifying all its Northern California home communities to GreenPoint Rated standards, which is a third-party certification program from Build It Green, a green building program. The rating encompasses efficiency in energy consumption, carbon dioxide emissions and water use.