Earth Advantage Launches Green Certification
Program For Small Commercial Buildings

The Earth Advantage Institute (EAI), a nonprofit sustainable building organization, has launched its Earth Advantage Commercial (EAC) green building certification program.

EAC is a rigorous green building certification that is accessible and cost effective for commercial buildings smaller than 100,000 square feet. Ninety five percent of all commercial buildings fall into this smaller category; however, green certification is often overlooked due to its perceived complexities and cost. 

There are three levels of certification: Platinum, Gold, and Silver. The measures are cumulative and prescriptive, allowing for a greatly simplified certification process, which EAI's pilot program found to be missing in the market segment. Developers, architects, engineers, green building consultants, and builders wil likely welcome a simplified, cost effective pathway to certification for commercial buildings smaller than 100,000 square feet. These professionals note that the absence of such a tailored certification program has been a strong deterrent against certifying smaller buildings. 

Since 2010, ten new buildings were involved in testing program requirements and viability. Late last year, EAI determined that the success of the pilot projects warranted a full national launch of the program. This August,  representatives from 8 architectural, engineering, and green building consulting firms successfully completed the 2-day Project Trustee training and credentialing exam to become part of EAC's Preferred Partner network.

The success of our EAC pilot in Oregon, along with the tremendous interest we've received from across the country, is a clear indication that there is a demand for green building certification options for small commercial buildings. EAC is fully prepared to meet that demand,” said Diana Fischetti, the commercial program manager at EAI.

About Earth Advantage Institute
Earth Advantage Institute works with the building and design industries to implement sustainable building practices. Its nonprofit mission is to create an immediate, practical, and cost effective path to sustainability and carbon reduction in the built environment. The organization achieves its objectives through a range of innovative certification, education, and technical services programs. Residential energy efficiency programs nationwide use its Energy Performance Score (EPS) label to estimate savings and measure home performance.

The Home Depot & U.S. Green Building Council
Launch Database of Green Building Products offers info on products
that may contribute to LEED for Homes certification

The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), in conjunction with The Home Depot, has launched an online green products database, The "Home Depot LEED Initiative" website features products for use in green home building that are available at Home Depot stores or for online purchase.
At present, more than 2,500 products sold at The Home Depot are listed on the website.

Green building offers opportunities to reduce energy and resource consumption, enabling lower utility costs and critical savings for homeowners. Green developments are also designed to offer superior indoor air quality to protect residents' health and reduce health-care costs.

This database represents just one of the many ways in which The Home Depot is advancing sustainable, efficient and healthy homes by supporting green building and green products,” said Nate Kredich, vice president of Residential Development at USGBC.
“We have innovative, environmentally-friendly products that make LEED certification simpler,” said Lindsay Chason, senior manager of Environmental Innovation at The Home Depot. "Now through our partnership with U.S. Green Building Council and their LEED for Homes program, we are simplifying the process of bringing healthier, greener homes to reality.”

The green housing market is growing rapidly, having tripled since 2008. Green homes, which comprised 17% of new residential construction last year, are expected to increase by 29% to 38% of the market by 2016, according to a report last week by McGraw-Hill Construction.

Green building offers opportunities to reduce energy and resource consumption, enabling lower utility costs and critical savings for homeowners. Green developments are also designed to offer superior indoor air quality to protect residents' health and reduce health-care costs.

About LEED
The U.S. Green Building Council's LEED green building certification system is the nation's largest program for the design, construction and operation of green buildings.
By using less energy, LEED-certified buildings save money for families, businesses and taxpayers; reduce greenhouse gas emissions; and contribute to a healthier environment for residents, workers and the larger community.

Over 44,000 projects are currently participating in the commercial and institutional LEED rating systems, comprising more than 8 billion square feet of construction space. In addition, nearly 16,000 homes have been certified under the LEED for Homes rating system, with more than 67,000 additional  homes registered. Learn more at

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