The Green Certification Process
Here in Florida, there are three major green certifying agencies that establish performance standards for construction. We prefer Florida Green Building Coalition (FGBC) because it is specifically tailored for homes here in our state. Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) is perhaps the most well known but has it's strength in commercial construction. The National Green Building Standard (NGBS) has ties to the building code and the National Association of Home Builders, but for some reason isn't as popular.
Each of the green certifying programs uses similar checklists for tracking the green components of a home and calculating the overall performance rating. In general "Green" can be categorized into:
Waste Management; and
Operations and Maintenance.
Each comprises several methods of varying values that meet the intent of the category. The process is an integrative whole-building approach where points earned in one category may benefit or impede performance elsewhere.
A preliminary analysis can be performed during the home design phase so that goals can be established for development of the project. Some of the most cost-effective and beneficial results can be obtained by incorporating green decisions into the early design phase.
We have built several green certified homes and have been twice recognized by FGBC as building some on the greenest homes in the state. Even when we don't pursue green certification, most of our homes are designed and built with many of the green standards in mind. Look at the categories above. Isn't that they way you would like to have your home built?