Green Building

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Currently, buildings in the US are responsible for 30% of the nation’s greenhouse gas emissions. Building green means being smart about how we use resources without needlessly damaging the environment. Green buildings can save energy and money while having a positive effect on building occupants' health.

Green Building Codes & Standards

Resources for Zero Net Energy Buildings (ZNEs)

  • Buildings are major emitters of greenhouse gases and Zero Net Energy (ZNE) buildings are a new innovative approach in construction and design that reduces energy use and greenhouse gas emissions. A ZNE building produces as much energy as it consumes through clean, renewable resources over the course of a year. When committing to a high efficiency building, ZNE can have benefits like increasing occupants' comfort and potentially higher resale values.
  • Energy Upgrade California is offering a plethora of information on Zero Net Energy buildings. California has set goals for new residential construction to be ZNE in 2020 and new commercial construction to be ZNE in 2030.
  • For a general introduction and guidelines for ZNE, check out the following resources:

1. Introduction to ZNE

2. ZNE Frequently Asked Questions

3. ZNE Design Fundamentals

4. ZNE for Schools and Public Buildings

5. ZNE For Architects and Engineers

Resources

  • Build It Green is a non-profit organization whose mission is to promote building green
  • LEED (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design) is a green building certification program through the U.S. Green Building Council that recognizes best-in-class building strategies and practices.
  • The Bay Area Regional Energy Network's Codes & Standards program is a joint effort of Bay Area cities and counties to achieve full compliance with the California Energy Code and provides resources on energy and green building codes.
  • To encourage residents to "build it green," the City of Walnut Creek offers free, helpful, informational booklets at the Permits Counter on the second floor of City Hall.