Asheville Real Estate Journal: removing barriers to sustainable design and green building
In order to assist local governments in identifying and removing barriers to sustainable design and green building within their permitting process, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has developed the Sustainable Design and Green Building Toolkit for Local Governments Toolkit. (let me know if you desire a copy in PDF format.) Request the PDF if you are interested in codes/ordinances that could affect the design, construction, renovation, and operation and maintenance of a building and its immediate site.
The PDF contains two distinct sections- an Assessment Tool and Resource Guide that addresses important subjects such as:
• Sustainable Sites and Responsible Land Use Development
• Materials and Resource Conservation
• Energy Conservation and Atmospheric Quality
• Water Efficiency, Conservation, and Management
• Indoor Environmental Air Quality (IAQ)
Possibly very important to those of you interested in sustainable building and neighborhoods, the second section offers a guide to developing an Action Plan for implementing changes within a community's permitting process.
Here you will learn the "right" questions to consider when REALTORS© and/or our clients are conversing with decision-makers about green building codes such as:
• Are existing codes/ordinances highly prescriptive or is there room, or requirement, for interpretation?
• If there is room for interpretation, is there a policy that supports and defines parameters for interpretation?
• Is there periodic review of codes/ordinances? If so, by whom?
• Is there a clear process for variances? Who has the authority to grant variances, and is the granting of a variance a rare or common activity?
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