Common Sense Guide for Consumers
According to the US EPA, in the United States, buildings account for:
- 39 percent of total energy use
- 38 percent of carbon dioxide emissions
It’s time for smarter building. If you are planning a project, hire a contractor with experience and knowledge of green building (ask a few questions and if they can’t go into detail about why the products and process they use are better, call the next contractor on your list.) The US Green Building Council website has a searchable database for locating contractors, builders, and architects. If you are in Washington, use the Built Green website to find professionals or the Northwest EcoBuilding Guild’s Green Pages.
Everyone should take advantage of King County’s comprehensive GreenTools for Builders and Homeowners. I especially like their Residential Remodeling Guides series. Green Home Solutions, located in Seattle, is a trusted resource for greener building materials.
Are you working on a house built before 1978, when lead based paint was outlawed? A new national law requires contractors to be certified in lead safe work practices. Be sure to ask your contractor if he or she is compliant. Don’t risk unnecessary lead exposure to your family.