Enterprise Green Communities

January/February 2010
A version of this article appears in the January/February 2010 issue of Home Energy Magazine.
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January 08, 2010
Enterprise Green Communities provides financial support and technical expertise to enable developers to build and rehabilitate homes that are healthier, more energy efficient and better for the environment on a cost-effective basis. The organization has been building thriving green communities for five years and has invested more that $700-million in green affordable housing developments. Its recently published report, Incremental Cost, Measurable Savings: Enterprise Green Communities Criteria proves that the benefits of creating sustainably built, measurably energy-efficient, healthy multifamily housing outweigh the up-front costs. According to the report’s executive summary, applying comprehensive green methods and materials to affordable housing developments invariably raises two hotly debated questions. First, How much do these measures cost? And second, Are these measures cost-effective? The report answers these questions by studying 27 affordable housing developments across the United States that meet the Enterprise Green Communities Criteria. The criteria include standards for indoor air quality, energy efficiency, and environmental benefits by addressing integrated design, location, site improvements, water conservation, materials with low environmental impact, and operation and maintenance. Enterprise puts a good amount of emphasis on the design and early planning stages of the developments for optimal savings—and not just financial savings, either. Focusing ...

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