Legislators Approve Environmental Guidelines for County Construction Projects
Nassau ‘LEEDs’ the way: Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design
Nassau County Legislators Dave Denenberg (D-Merrick) and Jeff Toback (D-Oceanside) joined their fellow lawmakers in unanimously approving a green building policy for the County, setting guidelines for water and energy consumption on all capital projects, at the September 5 legislative session.
Under the law, the county will use the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), a green building system utilized by the United Stated Green Building Council, for new development construction, rehabilitation, and maintenance projects.
“It is important for Nassau County to continue to be a leader on environmental issues,” Denenberg said. “Through our open space programs, compressed natural gas bus fleet, and hundreds of acres of pristine parks and preserves, we have shown a commitment to reducing pollution and energy consumption. This initiative is just another step towards a cleaner, healthier county.”
The LEED system promotes improved energy efficiency and increased generation of energy through renewable and clean energy technologies; increasing the demand for environmentally friendly building materials; decreasing the discharge of pollutants from buildings; and improving the health and productivity of building occupants by meeting advanced criteria indoor environmental quality.
“New construction should be planned, designed and managed to minimize its environmental impact,” Toback said. “By taking action to ensure healthier development, we are dedicated to preserving Nassau’s air quality, water quality, and quality of life for all its residents.”
“As part of our Healthy Nassau initiative, we are reducing greenhouse gas emissions from County buildings by improving energy efficiency and purchasing a portion of our electricity from wind power,” said County Executive Thomas R. Suozzi. “This legislation takes the next step by ensuring that new buildings and major renovations undertaken by the County are designed to save energy and resources while improving health and the environment.”
"This legislation just makes good sense,” said Adrienne Esposito, Executive Director of Citizens Campaign for the Environment. “It will reduce energy costs, preserve drinking water quantity and promote cleaner air. These are all objectives that are widely supported by the public and are reflected in this new public policy.”
For more information about LEED guidelines visit the following Web sites:
www.USGBC.org – United States Green Building Council
www.BuildingGreen.com – Information and products used in green building design
www.DesignCoalition.org – Sustainable energy design firm
www.GreenBuilding.com – Tips and information on building green
www.EPA.gov/greenbuilding - Government page on the benefits of green buildings