Other Ratings & Standards

Photo: Elekhh. License: CC BY-SA 3.0.


Standards and rating systems have been at the heart of the green building movement at least since U.S. energy standards for buildings (like ASHRAE 90.1) started ratcheting up following the 1970s energy crisis.

If you care about health and sustainability, you can now rely on dozens of ratings and standards for buildings as well as things in and around them, including:

  • Lab protocols for chemical emissions from finishes and furniture

  • Testing methods for durability of paints, textiles, and many other products

  • Standards for energy use, ventilation, thermal comfort, and more

  • Rating systems for schools, healthcare facilities, parking garages, landscapes, and healthy spaces
  • New Standard Puts Air Barriers to the Test

    News Analysis

    To test the performance of air barriers in real-world conditions, a new ASTM standard uses an eight-foot-square mockup of an exterior wall.

  • GE and Masco Team Up on Homebuilder Program

    News Analysis

    The new GE Ecomagination Homebuilder Program brings branded product requirements and greater marketing power to Masco's respected Environments for Living program.

  • Appraising Green in Vancouver

    News Analysis

    The Vancouver Valuation Accord aims to bring environmental responsibility to real estate appraisal standards.

  • Homebuilders and Code Officials Partner to Create Green Standard

    News Analysis

    The National Association of Home Builders is working with the International Code Council to create a new residential green building standard.

  • Two Reports Laud Green Schools

    News Analysis

    Two recent reports, one from the National Academies' National Research Council and one from Capital E, confirm that green schools support student and faculty health and performance, and are a good investment.

  • D.C. Considers Green Building Legislation

    News Analysis

    Legislation before the Washington, D.C. Council would enact green building requirements for both public and private projects, making it the first major U.S. city to do so.

  • Strawbale Walls Fare Well in Firewall Tests

    News Analysis

    Two new tests of strawbale wall assemblies under ASTM E119-05a resulted in separate one- and two-hour firewall ratings.

  • U.K. Homes Rating System Recognizes FSC, SFI

    News Analysis

    The Building Research Establishment's (BRE) EcoHomes environmental rating system for homes in Great Britain recently gave equal recognition in its guidelines to wood certified by FSC and SFI, two rival programs.

  • National Center for Healthy Housing Rates Green Building Systems

    News Analysis

    The National Center for Healthy Housing (NCHH) has announced results of its evaluation of major national green building and indoor air quality standards.

  • Clinton, Large Cities Group, Act on Global Warming

    News Analysis

    Former President Bill Clinton recently launched the Clinton Climate Initiative, which includes a partnership aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions with an international group of major cities and the U.S. Green Building Council.