Sustainable Design and Construction


  • Buildings use 41% of all primary energy consumed
  • Buildings account for 74% of electricity consumption and 80% of electricity expenditure



  • Buildings use 15 trillion gallons of water per year
  • Up to 30% of that is for use outdoors (e.g., landscaping)

Materials and Solid Waste

  • Building-related construction and demolition debris in the
    U.S. totals 160 million tons per year, nearly 26% of all
    non-industrial waste
  • 250 million tons of trash is generated per year in the U.S.6
    Greenhouse Gas Emissions
  • Buildings are responsible for 37% of all greenhouse gas
    emissions in the U.S.
  • Fossil fuels account for 75% of energy sources used by the
    buildings sector

Productivity and Comfort

  • Studies done by the EPA show indoor levels of pollutants may be up to 10 times higher than outdoor levels
  • Poor indoor air quality in buildings can affect health and decrease productivity

NEXT: Xanterra’s Fundamental Elements of Sustainable Design and Construction

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