Top 10 Green Building Trends of 2010

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Jerry Yudelson, a prominent leader in the green building world, recently published his annual top ten list of green building trends.  As founder of green building consultancy Yudelson Associates, Yudelson is an author of 11 green building books and past chair of the Greenbuild (2004-2009).  He’s a big deal.  In mostly his words below, check out what’s in store for green buildings in 2010:

1. Green building will continue to grow more than 60 percent in 2010, using new, cumulative LEED project registrations as a proxy.  According to Yudelson,  “there’s no sign that the green wave has crested.”

2. Green building will benefit from the Obama presidency and the strongly Democratic Congress, with a continued focus on green jobs gained by applying incentives to energy efficiency, new green technologies, and renewable energy.

3. The focus of the green building industry will continue to switch from new buildings to greening existing buildings. The LEED for Existing Buildings rating system was the fastest growing system in the USGBC’s portfolio, and Yudelson wrote the book on greening existing buildings (giveaway coming soon).

4. Awareness of the coming global crisis in fresh water supply will result in further steps to reduce water consumption in buildings with more conserving fixtures, rainwater recovery systems, and innovative new water technologies.

5. The green building movement will go global, as more countries begin to create their own green building incentives and developing their own green building councils.

6. Solar power use in buildings will accelerate with the prospect of increasing utility focus on state-level renewable power standards (RPS) for 2015 and 2020. Third-party financing partnerships will continue to grow and provide capital for large rooftop systems.

7. Local governments will step up their mandates for green buildings for both themselves and the private sector. We’ll see at least 20 major new cities with commercial sector green building mandates.

8. Zero-net-energy designs for new buildings will become increasingly commonplace, in both residential and commercial sectors, as LEED and ENERGY STAR ratings become too common to confer competitive advantage.

9. The retail sector will embrace green building, especially green operations.  Retailers are becoming conscious of the importance of green operations and green supply chain endeavors.

10. European green building technologies will become better known and more widely adopted in the U.S. and Canada. Yudelson wrote the book on green building trends in Europe.

BONUS: Campus sustainability plans and actions will become the defining trend in higher education with +800 educational institutions racing to embrace a thorough response to climate change.

In 2010, make sure to keep track of these green building trends and others through Jerry Yudelson’s website, Yudelson Associates.


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    I love living in Portland which is the forefront for green initiative and green thinking. Our city is making it as easy as possible to do solar energy and rainwater collection.

    -Tyler

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