News Analysis

Environmental Initiatives at Habitat for Humanity

Americus, Georgia-based Habitat for Humanity International is well-known for its coordination of locally based affordable housing projects. Working largely with donated materials and volunteer labor, Habitat (with its many local affiliates) is now one of the nation’s twenty largest homebuilders. Minimizing environmental impact has not traditionally been high on the organization’s list of priorities, but that appears to be changing.

Senior advisor David Ewing, Ph.D., a full-time volunteer with Habitat, has been working for several years to increase the attention given to sustainability through his office for environmental initiatives. Several local affiliates have also pushed an environmental agenda, with various projects that are each ground-breaking in different ways. Until recently, however, attention to environmental concerns from top management at Habitat had been lukewarm. In December 1995 a two-day Environmental Initiative Symposium with about fifty environmental design experts, including Alex Wilson and Nadav Malin of

EBN, and representatives of several dozen Habitat affiliates set the tone for what may be a major shift in Habitat’s agenda.

Published January 1, 1996

(1996, January 1). Environmental Initiatives at Habitat for Humanity. Retrieved from