The Next Phase in Green Building Is Healthier Buildings

165923-1The financial benefits of green building have been well established. Studies have repeatedly shown green building certification such as LEED and BREEAM lead to lower operating costs, such as reduced utility bills and lower total lifecycle costs.

Another business benefit: building owners report seeing a median increase of 7 percent in the value of their green buildings compared to traditional buildings.

So it’s not that surprising that green building is outpacing overall construction growth in the US.

But as green building increasingly becomes the norm, driven both by market demand and environmental regulations, some savvy developers and owners are looking to the next phase of green building: healthier buildings that improve employee wellness.

These buildings are better for the environment. They incorporate features like daylighting, which decreases electricity use, and zero volatile organic compound paints and glues, which reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

They’re also better for their human inhabitants. Daylighting — using natural light and direct sunlight — improves workers’ health, happiness and productivity. And zero-VOC products means building occupants aren’t exposed to these chemicals that can irritate eyes and cause central nervous system damage.

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