The City of Thornton strives to support sustainable policies, including the preservation of the natural environment and conservation of resources such as energy and water. Thornton provides opportunities for the community to engage and participate in sustainable and green practices. Check out the 'Thornton Sustainability Programs' link for more information on programs and services related to social, economic and environmental sustainability.
Thornton Greenhouse Gas Inventory Report
Curious about Thornton's carbon footprint? In July 2009, the City partnered with the University of Colorado at Denver to conduct a Greenhouse Gas Inventory. The findings were compiled in the April 2010 report and provide a baseline energy measure to compare Thornton to the surrounding region and help identify areas of improvement.
Green Building and Design Practices
The City encourages developers and builders to use sustainable and green practices through all phases of site planning and building design. Green buildings can be designed, constructed and operated to use less energy, water and natural resources, create less waste, and be more comfortable for occupants. The following are just a few of the certification programs and systems that provide guidelines for developers and builders:
- U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). The U.S. Green Building Council is a 501(c)(3) non-profit community of leaders working to make green buildings available to everyone within a generation.
- LEED, or Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, is an internationally-recognized green building certification system. Developed by the USGBC in March 2000, LEED provides building owners and operators with a framework for identifying and implementing practical and measurable green building design, construction, operations and maintenance solutions. LEED promotes sustainable building and development practices through a suite of rating systems that recognize projects that implement strategies for better environmental and health performance.
- Built Green Colorado. Introduced in 1995, Built Green Colorado is one of oldest and largest green home building programs in the nation. A voluntary industry-driven program of the Home Builders Association of Metro Denver offered to builders across the state, the purpose of Built Green Colorado is to encourage home builders to use technologies, products and practices that result in homes that are better built and better for the environment.
- ENERGY STAR for New Homes. To earn the ENERGY STAR, a home must meet strict guidelines for energy efficiency set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), making them 20–30% more efficient than standard homes. Homes achieve this level of performance through a combination of energy efficient improvements, including effective insulation systems, high–performance windows, tight construction and ducts, efficient heating and cooling equipment, and ENERGY STAR qualified lighting and appliances.
- National Association of Home Builders: Green Building, Remodeling & Development. NAHBGreen is helping builders, remodelers, developers and home owners/buyers build and understand high-performance construction and development. While some of the impetus to build green is being dictated by policymakers, increased awareness among home buyers is also driving the growth in this sector. Accordingly, NAHBGreen helps prepare the industry by educating and credentialing building professionals, developing measurements for green building, and advocating at the national level for credible, voluntary, and market-sensitive green building initiatives.