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Beyond Waste


Green Building


Learn about green building practices in your area. Green buildings are designed to last longer, use healthier materials, and be less expensive to operate. Green building efforts can help to eliminate waste generated by building construction, and grow markets for healthy, sustainable building materials.

We all depend on buildings to live, learn, and work in. As our state's population grows, we will need more homes, schools, and offices. This ongoing opportunity for Washington's building industry provides living-wage jobs in our communities and plays an important role in a healthy economy.

But buildings can have negative impacts on our health, our wallets, and the environment. For example:

  • Residential and commercial buildings used nearly two-thirds of all electricity consumed in the U.S. in 2003.
  • Construction and demolition waste made up 34 percent of the solid waste generated in Washington in 2002.
  • The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimates that most adults now spend an average of 90 percent of their time indoors, which means that ensuring quality indoor environments is critical for our health.
Green buildings will be a big part of creating sustainable communities and moving Washington toward a sustainable future

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Click here to find green building resources in your area