LEED, or Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design, is a certification program for green buildings with stringent requirements for building energy efficient and environmentally responsible structures. Some requirements of this program include specific building materials, smart grid capable, gray water reclamation systems, green space minimums, high levels of insulation and low thermal transfer glass (US Green Building Council). Green buildings are a must if we are to sustain our current level of growth. Despite the higher initial cost of these buildings, the long term energy savings make these buildings a smarter choice for
A green building (also referred to as sustainable building or green construction) is a structure that employs an approach that is responsible for the environment besides being efficient in regard to resources all through its life cycle: This is from selecting the site to designing it, constructing, operating, maintaining, renovating and demolishing it. To achieve this, the client, the engineers, the architects and the entire design team closely cooperate at all stages of a project (Yan and Paliniotis, 2006). Practicing Green Building complements and expands the conventional building design areas of comfort, durability, utility and economy.
Torcellini, P., Poles, S., Deru, 2006, Zero Energy Buildings : A Critical Look at the Definition, Preprint, NREL, ACEEE Summer Study, Pacific Grove, CA, USA
Smart materials are designed materials that have one or more properties that can be significantly changed in a controlled fashion by external stimuli  that provide architects with more opportunity to design that are environmentally sustainable. According to early definitions, smart materials are materials that could respond to their environments in a timely manner . With a look to characteristics of smart materials, we discover that they directly focus on their actuation events and the ability of prognosis, immediate response to the environmental conditions. The external stimuli, Light, Temperature, Pressure, Electric field, Magnetic field and Chemical environment  on smart materials cause different effect on smart materials. Addington and Schodek say “The behaviour of a material is dependent upon its interaction with an energy stimulus” . Smart materials according their response to external stimuli classify to three groups: Property change, Energy exchange and Shape memory alloy . Smart materials are often described as adaptive or intelligent materials . Because of this adaptivity, also increases the option space for saving energy while at the same time supporting favourable comfort conditions . With the aim of developing and encouraging appropriate energy policies for the future, it is required to gain an understanding of professional views in all countries, as well as those with extensive fossil fuel reserves . Smart Materials are a particular type of materials that have recently received considerable attention in the international construction industry because they suggest the feasibility of preparing clean energy sources for buildings in aesthetically and architecturally fascinating ways
As the environmental problems become more and more serious these years, especially that intense negative impact that buildings in modern cities bring to the cities, the concept of Green Building is being more and more important considered by local and federal government. According to the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), a green building is one that utilizes design and construction practices that significantly reduce or eliminate the negative impact of buildings on the environment and the building's occupants. Besides the more and more advanced building structure and technology, the main goal of green building is to protect the health of the occupants, save energy and reduce pollution to environment. There are many certifications of green buildings to judge whether the building meets the standard of green buildings and what environmental performance level is this building at, to help government regulators, building professionals and consumers to see better how this building can be improved and what is its impact on human beings and environment. Such green building programs include Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), Environmental Protection Agency's Energy Star program, National Association of Home Builders (NAHB Green), etc. Among them, LEED is one of the most popular certification programs that give the building credits for its environmental performance. In this essay, I will discuss the costs and benefits of different types of building projects that were certified by LEED.
Buildings and the appliances alone account for 40 percent of America 's energy use and a third of our global warming emissions (NRDC). New buildings will need to meet new energy-efficiency standards that maximize energy savings and existing homes and commercial spaces can be improved to save energy through weatherizing and installing energy efficient heating, cooling and lighting systems. Ultimately, this will not only be energy efficient but also cost effective as well. In the bigger picture, retrofitting just 1 out of every 5 homes would avoid the need to build 13 mid-sized power plants every year. Retrofitting every house in the country would cut as much global warming pollution as taking a half a million cars off the road – and would save more oil and gas than we could extract from drilling in our coastal waters (NRDC). In the long run, creating more efficient communities through homes and buildings, we could cut back on the global warming issues we are dealing
Well-recognized cities worldwide have built over the years great buildings with a variety of designs and concepts however consequently too much building has been making grievous decrease on energy efficiency. Now, “Green Architecture” has been popularized and as a result a modicum of energy efficiency has increased and also it has substantiated a new perspective, a new versatile way on architecture.
Sustainable design seeks to reduce negative impacts on the environment, the health and comfort of building occupants, thereby improving building performance. The basic objects of sustainability are to reduce consumption of non-renewable resources, minimal waste, and create healthy, productive environments (“Sustainable Design”). Focusing primarily on the sustainable design principles, there are five, including: low-impact materials, energy efficiency, quality and durability, design for reuse and recycling, and renewability. As sustainability appears to become the necessary trend in architecture, the question concerning the cost versus outcome of “going green” really an investment or a waste of time and money comes to mind. With our research provided below, we believe the expenses may truly be with the investment in the end.
Sustainable buildings are becoming somewhat of a necessity in the world today. As the demand for green building develops, so does the demand for green building materials. Just as the old techniques and building materials seem to disappear in the assembly of things, they are now making a come back. Green building focuses on the efficiency of major resources like water and energy. As the cost for sustainable materials and products are on the decline, building green seems to be the most cost effective kind of design and construction. Looking specifically at green materials and their impact on the production of structures, it is evident that they are a prime choice for building material. The use of green materials should be promoted because they are better for the environment, more healthful for the consumer, and better for the economy.
The beginnings of today's green revolution can be traced back to the environmental awareness of the 1960s and European design. New construction techniques have lead to the development of innovative materials and design concepts. Green buildings are designed, constructed and commissioned to ensure they are healthy for their occupants. Successfully designed green projects can involve an extensive array of factors, ranging from the resourceful use of materials, to careful consideration of function, climate, and location.