image credit: Franco Folini
Big Green Building news out of San Francisco today:
According to an article posted yesterday on SFGate.com, it’s becoming clear that San Francisco building practices are moving directly towards the Green.
We’ve seen indications that changes were coming, but it looks close to becoming official: San Francisco will become a green building leader.
San Francisco moved a step closer Wednesday to imposing the country’s most stringent green building codes, regulations that would require new large commercial buildings and residential high-rises to contain such environmentally friendly features as solar power, nontoxic paints and plumbing fixtures that decrease water usage.
City officials estimate that by 2012, the new green building codes could reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 60,000 tons and save 220,000 megawatt hours of power and 100 million gallons of drinking water.
This is amazing step forward, which can’t be understated. Here is how the changes will get approved, and be rolled out:
The Building Inspection Commission, which oversees building permitting and construction, voted unanimously Wednesday to send the green building standards to the Board of Supervisors. If the supervisors approve the regulations, Mayor Gavin Newsom, who last year convened a task force to study and develop the proposals, has promised to sign them into law.
The rules, if implemented, would be phased in gradually, and developers would have until 2012 to fully comply with the strictest levels of the green building codes
I can’t help but feel the political aspect of this as well. So, my favorite quote out of the entire piece? This:
“George Bush is doing nothing to fight climate change on the national level, but with this groundbreaking ordinance, we’re doing our part on the local level,” said Nathan Ballard, a Newsom spokesman. “Many people don’t realize that buildings have a big carbon footprint, and this will help reduce the size of that footprint.”
Green building is definitely a big lever when it comes to reducing carbon footprints, so we should all be very excited about this.
So where is Los Angeles and San Diego (or even San Jose) when it comes to developing green building codes? Not to mention other major US cities? I’m taking a look, and will post back about that soon.
More news to come as it develops!