Green Building

How green is your school building?  Light green, dark green, hunter green, olive green? Do you even know what it means to have a green building?  According to GreenBiz.com, many of the buildings we currently use produce roughly a third of our carbon dioxide emissions.  They also affect the environment in other ways by generating waste for example, mismanaging water resources, and having a negative impact on the surrounding land.  They even affect us directly by being the source for many indoor air quality issues.  A green building is one where these negative impacts are minimized or completely offset.
 
Numerous factors determine how “green” a facility is including the building’s energy use, where the building materials come from, how efficiently water is used, how waste is managed, how the on-site land is affected, and the overall impact that a school has on the environment, including its occupants.

All of the issues covered in greenGuide for a Green School contribute to making a building “green.”  In addition, this section will provide you with specific resources related to the design of the building, sources for building supplies, and issues of land use.  It will also offer comprehensive sources incorporating all aspects of “going green.”
 
The Center for Environmental Education is working on providing you these valuable resources and guidelines for meeting specific goals of making an existing building more green or constructing a green building from the bottom-up.

In the meantime, please check out Greener Buildings by GreenBiz.com, a resource center for environmentally responsible building development.

If you are ready to “go green,” and need help finding green contractors, suppliers, and retailers for your renovation or construction project, visit the Green Home Guide. For additional resources, check out this list of green building websites accompanied by reviews written about each of them by Debra Lynn Dadd, a consumer advocate hailed as “The Queen of Green” by the New York Times.

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