(360) 789-9669 codeinnovations@ecobuilding.org

For Innovators

Think you can’t afford to build green?

We ask:
Can you afford not to?

Building Green isn’t out of your reach.

It’s no longer a gimmick. Building Green is about high performance structures that save money, increase property value, and help the environment now and for future generations.
With the the Building Innovations Database at your fingertips, you can find multiple ways to save money and the environment, while creating the perfect living space.


Average Monthly Energy Cost Savings

Though most green buildings cost 0 to 4% more than conventional buildings, about 50% of all the buildings studied reported a payback of five years or less just from energy and water savings. Note that when health and productivity benefits were also taken into account, that figure jumped to 90%.

ENERGY STAR for New Homes promises homeowners will save on average 25% of monthly energy costs when compared to standard homes built to the minimum building code.

Sources: Residential Property Tax & Utility Charges Survey and ENERGY STAR benefits


Reduction in Communicable Respiratory Diseases

It was found that building retrofits which improved the indoor environment of buildings resulted in a reduction of communicable respiratory diseases (9-20%), reduced allergies and asthma (18-25%) and non-specific health and discomfort effects (20-50%).

Sources: “Health and Productivity Gains from Better Indoor Environments and their Implications for the U.S. Department of Energy” and Why Go Green?


Per Square Foot Property Value Increase

In addition to utility savings, green buildings are also showing higher property values and average sales price increases of more than $20 per sq. ft.

Sources: “Making the Business Case for High Performance Green Buildings,” “Green Value: Green Buildings, Growing Assets” and “Greening Buildings and Communities: Costs and Benefits

Where do you start?

Talk to your architect or contractor about how you can make your home higher performance. Get up to speed about current building techniques and codes that will directly impact your bottom line. Browse the Innovations Database and Policy Profiles together with your building team to find the Green Building Opportunities that will change how you think about building.

From starting a new structure, to upcycling an existing structure, to simply retrofitting a dorm room, you can find so many ways to make your dwelling environmentally responsible!

Once you’ve gotten comfortable with some of the current thinking around Green Building, help others learn what a difference they can make! Contribute your own innovations to the Green Buildings Database so that others can build their knowledge. Together, we can transform our built environment!

I am already building Green. Now what?

Making a difference in common practices takes the efforts of many. So how can you make a difference?  You are on the cutting edge of technology that is transforming our built environment for energy efficiency, low-impact development, sustainable materials. Share your experiences, your knowledge, and let all of the other homeowners and home-buyers see how they can benefit from best practices.

Contribute to the Building Innovations Database!

What you’ve learned from your project.

Building Innovations Database

Help us Build the Database:  Submit a Code Innovation Case Study Idea

If you’ve ever convinced a code official to approve your innovative building design, material or technology, please tell us about it! A code innovation is a green building, high-performance or other innovative approach or item which challenged the code in some way (i.e. took a non-prescriptive permitting path), but ultimately gained approval to be constructed. Learn about our Case Study Methodology.

If accepted, a Case Study of your project would include details of the permitting process, approval requirements, & design specifications of your innovation, ultimately providing a “road map” of how you got the permit. Whether the case was site-specific or universally replicable, our volunteer researchers will work with you and the approving official to write a 2-3 page case study documenting what you did and the “lessons learned.”  Finished case studiesare posted on our website, and perhaps even featured on our blog.

To Submit your case study idea, simply take five minutes to complete our “Project Short Form.” We will contact you if your project is selected for further study.  See our Case Study Methodology.

See previous case studies!

Find the latest in Green Code development, programs and initiatives

We are building a growing list of references including adopted, under review or proposed “Green” Codes and Standards, which are those codes, design and development, engineering or other standards which affect the regulation of building and construction in the United States and abroad.  Please help us discover a new Green Code [Insert Submit Green Code Reference form]

Link to Building Codes & Standards organizations

The Project is assembling a list of Codes and Standards Organizations which will include:

  • PNW State Codes and Standards Organizations:  Washington, Oregon and Idaho (neighboring states and provinces will be added to the list later TBD).
  • U.S. Codes and Standards Developing Organizations
  • International Codes and Standards Organizations
  • Professional Associations
  • U.S. Federal Agencies