Contractor’s Commitment to Sustainable Building Practices

Building a revolution, one commitment at a time.

Contractors have power.

We hold the checkbook for purchasing products and materials. We also reign over the jobsite—how much it pollutes air, soil, and water; how much landfill waste it produces; and how effectively workers do their part to advance high performance.

Are we using all this power to move forward on sustainability? Well, it’s hard to know. There’s been few guidelines and no standard for tracking progress—until now.

The Contractor’s Commitment is the industry’s new way of assessing what it means to be a green contractor. Created by contractors for contractors, it’s a great way to get started on a sustainability journey or, for those of us who are well along, to apply a yardstick to our progress. It’s also a way to (optionally) get public recognition for our green building work.

Get started today by committing to sustainability goals on just 30% of your projects.

Category #1: Carbon Reduction

The goal of this category is to outline practices that General Contractors can implement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (“carbon”) from our construction activities and our corporate operations and to advocate for greenhouse gas reductions by our partners and suppliers. The best management practices (BMP) outlined in this category generally align with three themes:

  • Plan, Implement and Advocate
  • Track and Reduce
  • Report and Disclose

(For complete guidelines, download the Guide to the Contractor’s Commitment.)

Category #2: Jobsite Wellness

The goal of this category is to ensure the wellness of a contractor’s employees. Jobsites can be dangerous places and the materials that we use to construct buildings can be harmful if not handled properly. This section is designed to help ensure that the sustainability of our buildings does not come at the expense of the health of our employees.

(For complete guidelines, download the Guide to the Contractor’s Commitment.)

Category #3: Waste Management

The goal of this category is to outline steps General Contractors can take to minimize construction and demolition waste and maximize waste diversion. It is understood that each construction project is unique, and project-specific waste management plans are required to ensure success on a project-by-project basis.

(For complete guidelines, download the Guide to the Contractor’s Commitment.)

Category #4: Water Management

The goal of this category is to promote responsible use of water. It is understood that each construction project is unique, and project-specific water plans are required to ensure success on a project-by-project basis. This plan has been created to give all contractors an ability to participate in this section of the commitment, regardless of their sphere of influence.

(For complete guidelines, download the Guide to the Contractor’s Commitment.)

Category #5: Material Selection

The goal of this category is to outline steps General Contractors can take to advance the update of healthy and sustainable materials on projects. Each contractor has varying levels of influence with materials, from almost no control with bid-build, to moderate control with self-perform, and significant control with design-build projects.

Definition: Healthy and Sustainable Materials are those that minimize adverse impacts on human health and ecological systems while promoting social equity and transparency regarding their ingredients and impacts. Healthy Materials are, as much as possible, harmless during their manufacture, installation, application, operation, maintenance and end of life processes.

(For complete guidelines, download the Guide to the Contractor’s Commitment.)

How to Participate