Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

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EPA's mission is to protect human health and to safeguard the natural environment—air, water, and land—upon which life depends. For 30 years, EPA has been working for a cleaner, healthier environment for the American people.

Building-Related Programs

Brownfields Initiative
Works with public, private and non-profit partners to reuse sites whose redevelopment may be complicated by the real or perceived presence of contaminants.

Comprehensive Procurement Guidelines (CPG) Program
The Comprehensive Procurement Guidelines (CPG) program is part of EPA's continuing effort to promote the use of materials recovered from solid waste. Buying recycled-content products ensures that the materials collected in recycling programs will be used again in the manufacture of new products. The CPG program is authorized by Congress under Section 6002 of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) and Executive Order 13101. EPA is required to designate products that are or can be made with recovered materials, and to recommend practices for buying these products. Once a product is designated, procuring agencies are required to purchase it with the highest recovered material content level practicable.

  • EPA Comprehensive Procurement Guidelines (CPG) list recycled content products and provide recommended minimum recycled content guidelines. Building product categories include Construction Products, Landscaping Products, and Park and Recreation Products.

Construction and Demolition Debris
Supports projects to reduce, reuse, and recycle waste generated from building construction, renovation, deconstruction, and demolition.

Database of Environmental Information on Products & Services
This searchable database includes product-specific information (e.g., environmental standards, guidelines, contract language) developed by government programs, both domestic and international, as well as third parties. Users can browse the database or search for specific product categories. Users are also encouraged to submit their own information so the database can be updated continually.

Federal Green Construction Guide for Specifiers
To address the need for a comprehensive guide for procuring green construction services within the Federal government, EPA is partnering with OFEE and the multiagency-sponsored Whole Building Design Guide (WBDG) to develop a guide containing model green construction specification language to be used to supplement full project specifications. The Green Construction Guide for Federal Specifiers is intended to assist Federal agencies in meeting environmental mandates, as well as address EPA and DOE program recommendations. In addition, the Guide will help Federal agencies continue to use the LEED® rating system and a number of voluntary consensus standards more effectively as metrics for their green building practices. Organized according to the Construction Specifications Institute's MasterFormat™, the 60+ section Guide provides users with multiple, performance-based options, allowing for flexibility in application (see below for a list of current draft sections). An updated draft is planned for release in summer 2005.

Energy Star®
EPA Energy Star® program promotes partnerships with homebuilders, office building managers, product manufacturers, and many other organizations to improve the energy efficiency of homes, buildings, and various building components and appliances.

Environmentally-Preferable Purchasing Program
EPA's Environmentally-Preferable Purchasing Program aims to make the environment a factor in federal purchasing of all kinds of products, including building products.

EPA Green Buildings
EPA Pollution Prevention's website on Green Buildings provides information on creating healthier and more resource-efficient models of construction, renovation, operation, maintenance, and demolition.

Green Power Partnership
Provides information about renewable power sources, benefits of using them, and how to participate in the Partnership. Federal partners welcome!

Greening EPA
EPA Office of Administration's (OA) mission is to provide management, infrastructure, and operations support to EPA's approximately 150 offices and laboratories nationwide. EPA strives to make its buildings as energy-efficient and sustainable as possible to serve as models of healthy workplaces with minimal environmental impacts. From the award winning Kansas City Regional Office to the newly constructed regional labs in Chelmsford, Massachusetts, and Kansas City, Kansas, EPA buildings are incorporating the principles of sustainable design.

GreenScapes Program
Provides cost-efficient and environmentally preferable solution for large-scale landscaping that are designed to help preserve natural resources and prevent waste and pollution.

Heat Island Reduction Initiative
Works with communities and other partners to reduce the heat island effect caused by urban patterns of development.

Indoor Air Quality Building Education and Assessment Model (I-BEAM)
I-BEAM can assist in: conducting indoor air quality building audits; diagnosing and resolving indoor air quality related health problems; establishing indoor air quality management and maintenance programs to reduce indoor air quality risks; planning indoor air quality compatible energy projects; protecting occupants from exposures to construction, renovation contaminants; and calculating the cost, revenue, and productivity impacts of planned indoor air quality activities.

Indoor Environments Division
EPA Indoor Environments Division conducts numerous research and educational projects to improve indoor air quality and other elements of the indoor environment.

Integrating Green Purchasing into Your Environmental Management System
Executive Order 13148 requires all appropriate Federal facilities to implement Environmental Management Systems (EMS) by December 2005. Purchasing decisions can significantly influence the environmental performance of Federal facilities. This guidance document, written in collaboration with the Office of the Federal Environmental Executive and EPA's Federal Facilities Enforcement Office and Design for the Environment Program, will help Federal facilities integrate green purchasing into their EMS.

Laboratories for the 21st Century
Sponsored by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy, Labs21 is a voluntary program dedicated to improving the environmental performance of U.S. laboratories. Labs21 is designed to improve laboratory energy and water efficiency, encourage the use of renewable energy sources, and promote environmental stewardship.

Municipal Solid Waste Management
EPA's goals for the nation are to recycle 35 percent of MSW generated by 2005; to reduce waste generation to 4.3 pounds per person per day; to empower state, local, and tribal governments to better manage solid waste; to provide leadership in source reduction and recycling; to build stronger public and private partnerships; and to ensure the environmental soundness of source reduction, recycling, combustion, and land disposal.

Smart Growth Program
Provides tools to develop healthy communities, promote economic development, build strong neighborhoods and helps to make smart transportation choices.

Managing Urban Runoff (Non Point Source Pollution)
Provides information on how to reduce the run-off of pollutants from urban environments into our waters, including low-impact development strategies.

Water Efficiency Program
Efficient water use helps to reduce the need for costly water supply and wastewater treatment facilities, helps maintain stream flows and healthy aquatic habitats, and reduces the energy used to pump, heat and treat water. A broad spectrum of stakeholders, from homeowners to State governments, can find information in EPA Water Efficiency Program's website to help them become more water-efficient.