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The Board of Supervisors finds that:
1. Buildings are one of the distinguishing elements of human civilization. Traditional building design and construction practices have significant negative environmental impacts. In the United States, buildings consume 48% of all energy, 76% of all electricity, and generate 38% of all carbon (CO2) emissions. In San Francisco, buildings consume 54% of all energy, 80% of all electricity, and generate 56% of all carbon emissions. Advanced green buildings can generate their own energy, minimize carbon emissions, produce and process their own water, emphasize reuse of buildings and materials, and provide healthy interior environments.
2. The selection of sustainable design features and building materials is consistent with the City’s Precautionary Principle Policy. This policy requires that the City consider a full range of alternatives in order to select products and procedures that minimize harm and maximize the protection of public health and natural resources.
3. The United States Green Building Council (USGBC) is a non-profit organization committed to a prosperous and sustainable future for our nation through cost-efficient and energy-saving green buildings. LEED® is an internationally-recognized green building certification system, developed by the USGBC.
4. Green buildings provide financial benefits while protecting human and environmental health. Total construction costs for buildings seeking LEED certification fall into the existing range of costs for buildings not seeking LEED certification. Green buildings, on average, result in savings of 20% of total construction costs over the first 20 years of operation.
5. The California Energy Commission has established a goal that all new commercial construction in California will be Zero Net Energy by 2030, and 50% of existing commercial buildings will be retrofit to Zero Net Energy by 2030.