All projects receiving Brownfields Program Assistance are encouraged to incorporate sustainable practices into their redevelopment projects, business plans, and evaluate the potential for green building certification.
Green building trends are on the rise in Springfield and nationally, and provide numerous opportunities to improve the impacts of buildings on the environment and health. The benefits are even greater when green buildings are located on a former brownfields site where there is access to existing infrastructure, eliminating the need to use green-space on the outskirts of town, and the brownfields issues have been eliminated and are prevented from returning in the future.
EPA recently issued a new green building strategy to facilitate the mainstream adoption of green building practices. The strategy builds upon and calls for better coordination among existing programs, such as Energy Star and WaterSense, which are designed to reduce the impacts of buildings and development.
Understanding the benefits of green building on people is important, as Americans spend nearly 90% of their time in buildings. Currently, buildings are responsible for nearly 40% of U.S. energy use and about 40% of U.S. carbon dioxide emissions, the primary greenhouse gas. But there are many opportunities to reduce these impacts in the buildings where we live, work and play.