EcoDesign Resources Society Contact Us  
Resources & Links    

About Us


Services & Activities

Resources & Links

Site Map


GREEN DEVELOPMENT: Buildings and Land

The Canadian Green Building Council
The Canada Green Building Council is being formed to accelerate the design and construction of Green Buildings across Canada.The Council is a broad-based inclusive coalition of representatives from different segments of the design and building industry.

The Council will work to: change industry standards, develop best design practices and guidelines; advocate for green buildings, and develop educational tools to support its members in implementing sustainable design and construction practices.

The Canadian Eco-Lumber Co-op
The Canadian Eco-Lumber Co-op offers sustainable solutions to building and construction needs. All products that are carried by the Eco-Lumber Co-op are independently eco-certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC). FSC wood and products are also recognized by the Us Green Building Council and LEED. The Eco-Lumber Co-op carries a wide range of products including: lumber, timbers, plywood & sheet goods, flooring & decking, siding & paneling, doors, furniture & millwork and home packages.

Greener Buildings
GreenerBuildings: The resource for environmentally responsible building developement is a free, Web-based resource to help companies of all sizes and sectors understand and address building design, construction, and operation in a way that aligns environmental responsibility with business success.

Their mission is to provide hands-on tools, action steps, and other resources companies can use to understand the underlying issues, and to promote positive, cost-effective practices that improve buildings' environmental performance while simultaneously reducing costs and negative health impacts.

GreenerBuildings is a partnership between two nonprofit organizations: the U.S. Green Building Council, the United State’s foremost coalition of leaders from across the building industry working to promote buildings that are environmentally responsible, profitable and healthy places to live and work; and Green Business Network, a program of The National Environmental Education & Training Foundation (NEETF), that also produces GreenBiz, ClimateBiz, and other sites.

Better Buildings for Greater Vancouver
Initiated by the Greater Vancouver Regional District (GVRD) and its partners, this site acts as a one-stop resource to retrofitting buildings to perform at higher efficiency. It provides resources for municipal sector, institutional, commercial and industrial building types. Included in this website are resources for financing, various initiatives, supports and case studies.

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation – Innovative Buildings
These case studies from CMHC illustrate some of the innovative approaches to sustainability and green buildings in Canada (and a few from Sweden, U.S., Netherlands, etc). They are all conveniently sorted in categories such as green buildings, acoustics, energy efficiency, earthquake resistance, retrofit, financial considerations, and planning design issues.

City of Santa Monica Green Buildings Design & Construction Guidelines
Conflict of Interest Declaration! I headed the team (with David Rousseau and Ray Cole, among others) that created Santa Monicas GB Guidelines. We tried very hard to make them as useful as possible to time-pressed design and construction professionals. Covering Siting and Form, Landscape, Transportation, Envelope/Space Planning, Materials, Water, Electrical, HVAC and Control Systems, as well as Construction Management and Commissioning, each chapter has a discussion of its topic, an annotated information resource list, and (most important) Recommended Practices that succintly illustrate and summarize most GB design approaches. While it's tailored to what works in the coastal Southern California climate, I'd say that most of the design advice is useful anywhere. Available for free download as one or several .pdf files, the site also includes an annotated WWW resource list.

EBN: Environmental Building News
This monthly newsletter is probably the most useful independent information resource on all aspects of green building design in North America; and their website is as well-considered and valuable. It provides access to articles from past issues of Environmental Building News; summaries of EBNs current issue feature articles; product reviews, and article-related links. They also publish GreenSpec, Green Building Advisor software, and co-sponsors excellent listservs on green homes and commercial buildings.
Some very user-friendly documents on how to build green:

GBIC - Green Building Information Council
Supported by Natural Resources Canada's C2000 program, the GBIC and its president, Dr. Ray Cole of the UBC School of Architecture have been central sparkplugs driving the seminal Green Building Challenge conferences. The site, edited by Nils Larsen, is primarily an index for green and energy-efficient building resources, but also allows ordering of the GBC proceedings - one of the best sources on performance of green buildings globally. The GBIC also publishes the Advanced Buildings Newsletter bimonthly; the website has .pdf files of past issues available for free download. The GBIC site hosts - an excellent resource on green building technologies and approaches, in its "Advanced Buildings Technologies and Practices" section; with case studies, technology summaries and contacts - home page for Natural Resources Canada's Buildings Group, which develops software tools to support energy-efficient building design.

Green Buildings B.C.

Covering both the BC Governments' New and Retrofit Programs, this site summarizes these initiatives, and provide a number of information resources created and used by them for free download. (Conflict-of-interest declaration: I acted as a technical resource for the New Buildings Pilot Program.) IMHO, the most valuable New Building Program documents are the Draft Performance Targets, and summary of the "Integrated Design Process" used in the New Buildings Pilot projects. The New Buildings Program site also has an information resource list covering both WWW and print documents, listed in order of the performance target they help address; and a listing of GB consultants, practitioners and suppliers in BC. The Retrofit Program matches BC-funded school districts, universities, colleges and health care institutions with funding agencies, low-interest loans and qualified consultants, to retrofit government-funded facilities to improve their energy and water efficiency, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions and waste. The Retrofit Program site includes an excellent "How-To Guide" for the program and GB retrofits in general; links to other North American retrofit programs; and pre-qualified consultants and contractors.
See "Resources " section for case studies, places to find money, guidelines and other info. URL link " Resources" in description:

Green Development
Rocky Mountain Institute's list of links on green development. Includes energy links (rating systems, energy efficiency, renewable energy) and links to centers, listserves, etc. on green building.

Home Resource Efficiency
Rocky Mountain Instute's site includes basic information on home resource efficiency and more detailed publications in the following areas: Energy efficiency; appliances and lighting; home cooling; household greenhouse-gas reduction; water efficiency; resource-efficient new home construction; environmentally friendly building materials; renewable energy: solar, wind, micro-hydro; ndoor air quality; recycling.

The Ministry of Finance and Corporate Relations: Policies and Guidelines

The Ministry of Finance also has a "Ministry of Finances Green Building Checklist" and is available at:

OIKOS Green Building Source
OIKOS is allied with Environmental Building News, and publishes the Energy Source Builder newsletters, which have long been respected independent reviwers of green building products and equipment. The site offers a searchable archive or ESB articles, and a database of GB products and EE/RE equipment; as well as a pretty good online library and Project Showcase.

SBIC - Sustainable Buildings Information Council
The Sustainable Buildings Industry Council (SBIC) is an independent, nonprofit organization whose mission is to advance the design, affordability, energy performance, and environmental soundness of America’s buildings. SBIC serves as a national resource clearinghouse for whole building design, product information, professional training, consumer education, and analytic tools. The SBICs (very good) books and software can be ordered online; but there is little available for free.

Sunlight Homes
The Sunlight Homes is a residential development company specializing in design and building the so-called sunlight homes. Sunlight homes are houses designed to maximize the use of natural sunlight, thus providing energy efficient, and comfortable living space. Other than selling their services, it also has two useful sections for those who are consider a sunlight home over a conventional home.

Sustainable Building Sourcebook
The City of Austin (the first North American municipal Green Building program) publishes this online GB design guide, covering water, energy, and materials. While oriented to Texas conditions and suppliers, much of its advice is universally applicable.

US GBC - US Green Building Council
The U.S. Green Building Council is a non-profit coalition of US building industry leaders, working to promote buildings that are environmentally responsible, profitable, and healthy places to live and work. Originators of the Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) GB performance rating system, the US GBC is having a major effect on building design practice in North America. Their site hosts LEED documentation, a few case studies, and a brief list of high-quality GB standards and information resources.

Whole Building Design Guide
The Whole Building Design Guide provides government and industry practitioners with a one-step, up-to-date portal to information relating to building guidance. It provides design guidance and suggestions to various building functions, design objectives, and products. It also provides guidance to project management involved with planning, development, delivery and control. Sustainability is one of the design guidance principles and is found in its own section.


Basic Guidelines - Environmental Building Design and Construction
The Environmental Building Design and Construction guidelines were developed by the US consulting firm known as BEST (Building Environmental Science and Technology). The list suggests ways to build buildings that are more comfortable, durable, healthy to live in, and less costly to operate in the long run.

Green Buildings BC: Performance Targets for Pilot Projects

BCBC and the Province are using these performance targets (prepared by EDRS members Ian Theaker & Jessica Wooliams) on some green building pilot projects.

Architecture | Climate | Energy | Finance | Food | General Sustainable Development Information | General Sustainable Urban Development | Green Building Resources | Green Chemistry | Green Roofs | Indicators | Industrial Ecology | Interiors: Products | Intriguing Potential | Landscape | Landscape Planning, Design and Management | Planning | Stormwater | Sustainable Community Design and Management | Water Issues