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green building

National Green Building Standard Approved for Use

green buildingThe latest version of the ICC/ASHRAE 700-2015 National Green Building Standard (NGBS) has been approved for use by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI).

The residential construction standard provides a pathway by which builders and developers may seek third-party green building certification of their new homes, developments and remodeling projects. Many cities and states offer incentives, such as rebates and additional density allowances, to builders and developers whose projects are NGBS-certified.

According to the US Green Building Council, 62 percent of firms building new single-family homes report that they are doing more than 15 percent of their projects green. By 2018, that percentage is expected to increase to 84 percent.

This is the third edition of the NGBS, which was first published in 2009. The International Code Council (ICC), the National Association of Home Builders and the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) all collaborated on the latest version.

The associations say the new 2015 edition better aligns the NGBS with international building codes and “expands the application” and sustainable building and efficiency practices.

“The updated NGBS provides designers, contractors, developers and policy makers with the most innovative options for minimizing a building’s environmental footprint,” said ICC chief executive officer Dominic Sims in a statement.

Some significant changes to the 2015 edition are the energy efficiency chapter referencing the 2015 International Energy Conservation Code; expanded builder options by including environmental product declarations for both specific and industry-wide products; and revamped stormwater management options that focus on low-impact development.

In other green building news, earlier this month the US Green Building Council updated the LEED green building rating system in an attempt to stop illegal logging.

The new pilot Alternative Compliance Path (ACP) credit, which is in the LEED quarterly addenda, aims to advance environmentally responsible forest management by rewarding project teams that proactively verify that the wood they are using is legal.

Photo Credit: green building via Shutterstock

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