The Green Urbanism Program of Global Green USA has released its 2016 analysis of state Qualified Allocation Plans in regards to green building criteria. The study, which has been ongoing since 2005, identified several trends in 2016:
- Almost ¾ of all states have incorporated smart growth principles and energy efficiency standards into their QAPs.
- Over half of all states now include resource conservation and health protection strategies.
- The presence of resource conservation topics have increased significantly over the past 3 years – especially references to stormwater protection and water conservation.
- Smart Growth: Since 2013, 3 topics in this category increased in prevalence (brownfield redevelopment, proximity to transit, proximity to services) while the remaining topics have become less prevalent (urban infill, adaptive reuse, revitalization plans, and habitat preservation).
The report made several recommendations:
- Require benchmarking and monitoring of energy, water, and solid waste
- Continue expanding proactive health strategies (no-smoking, energy star Indoor airPLUS program, providing exercise rooms and active design features)
- Establish a common standard for addressing resilience in the context of design and construction.
The only state this year to receive an “A+” was Ohio. Closely following were Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Washington, DC with A’s, and Connecticut, New Jersey, New York, Washington, Colorado, California, and Indiana with A- scores.