Once-exotic green building practices are now standard in many homes. Habitat for Humanity of Greater Nashville will build at least 40 houses this year, all of them LEED-certified. New apartments built by the Metropolitan Development and Housing Agency in Nashville’s Rolling Mill Hill neighborhood are also environmentally sustainable. Furthermore, Nashville is home to the South’s first LEED-certified neighborhood, the Gulch, and it will have its first Energy Star-certified neighborhood. This neighborhood will have 15 LEED-certified single-family homes with low-e windows and radiant roofs, as well as a community green space and a system for capturing rainwater. Green features in sustainably built houses may include cellulose insulation, radiant-barrier roofs, compact fluorescent lights, Energy Star Appliances, and tankless water heaters. Builders can choose from various certification programs, including the Department of Energy’s Energy Star and the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED program, and the National Association of Home Builders’ program. For 20 years, U.S. businesses and homes have saved nearly $230 billion on utility bills and prevented the emission of more than 350 million vehicles’ worth of greenhouse gases with the assistance of the Energy Star program. | Read More