The built environment has a profound impact on our natural environment, economy, health and productivity.
In the United States alone, buildings account for:
· 70% of electricity consumption
· 39% of energy use
· 39% of all carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions
· 40% of raw materials use
· 30% of waste output (136 million tons annually)
· 12% of potable water consumption
Environmental benefits: Enhance and protect ecosystems and biodiversity - Improve air and water quality - Reduce solid waste - Conserve natural resources
Economic benefits: Reduce operating costs - Enhance asset value and profits - Improve employee productivity and satisfaction - Optimize life-cycle economic performance
Health and community benefits: Improve air, thermal, and acoustic environments - Enhance occupant comfort and health - Minimize strain on local infrastructure - Contribute to overall quality of life.
Watch a 5-minute presentation on the benefits of building 'green' by Tim Hemsath, 2008 Chapter Chair and Assistant Professor for the College of Architecture at UNL: http://breeze.unl.edu/greenbenefits