Sustainable Sites Initiative – Green Infrastructure by Another Name…

I just wanted to let everyone know about a new initiative that is being worked on that involves green infrastructure. The sustainable sites initiative is an effort by the American Society of Landscape Architects, The United States Botanic Garden and the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center (which also has a great plant database) to create voluntary national guidelines and performance benchmarks for sustainable land design, construction and maintenance practices.

Over the past two years they have convened a diverse group of soil experts, hydrologists, botanists, as well as experts in human health and well being to create sustainable building Guidelines and Performance Benchmarks. The report, which is currently in draft form, focuses on measuring how a site can protect, restore and regenerate ecosystem services – benefits provided by natural ecosystems such as cleaning air and water, climate regulation and human health benefits. Essentially the report is looking at different aspects of green infrastructure and how to encourage its use in bigger and better ways.

Here at American Rivers we’ve been engaged in working on Green Infrastructure policy and practice, so we’re really excited about how good this report looks and how useful it could become.

As I mentioned, this report is currently in draft form and is open for comments. So feel free to go take a look and tell them what you think.