The Big Picture

Photo: NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. License: CC BY 2.0.

OVERVIEW

It’s easy to get caught up in the details—earning one more LEED point or getting that documentation you need for recycled content.

But it’s a lot easier to achieve all the project goals if the owner and the whole project team are in agreement about why you’re putting in all this work in the first place. Stuff like:

  • slowing down climate change

  • dealing with global water shortages

  • avoiding depletion of nonrenewable resources

  • preventing public health problems associated with manufacturing

  • righting social wrongs

Here we set the scene, providing context that can help get—and keep—everyone on the same page about project goals.

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  • Greening Your Electricity

    Feature Article

    Many businesses and homeowners are choosing to buy green power, including renewable energy credits (RECs). This article examines the environmental benefits of green power, including on-site renewables, what REC buyers should know about their purchases, and investing in energy conservation.

  • Passive Survivability: A New Design Criterion for Buildings

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    Buildings and their occupants are vulnerable to threats ranging from storms and rising sea levels to accidents and terrorism. In this feature article, EBN describes how to design and construct buildings to maintain livable conditions in the event of extended power outages or loss of heating fuel or water.

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    The world's largest company claims to have embraced environmental responsibility in everything from its supply chains to its waste stream, with goals of creating a prototype store with 30% lower greenhouse gas emissions within four years and doubling trucking efficiency within ten years. But how big a difference can the shift make, and is it enough?

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    Building operations represent 75% of Boston’s greenhouse gas emissions. Here’s what we can learn from the city’s work on ambitious climate goals.

  • 2030 Culture: Six Selfish Reasons to Commit

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    2030 Commitment signatories are making progress on climate goals. Along the way, they’re also finding new ways to save time and money.

  • Progress on 2030 Goals, Ten Years Later

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    The number of firms committing to 2030 carbon targets has more than doubled, and 8,182 project teams reported in 2014. But what about the carbon?

  • Six Ways Existing Buildings Can Save the Planet

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    Renovations, retrofits, and better-informed O&M will determine how quickly the developed world slows its carbon emissions.