At trade shows we ask customers and passersby what their biggest challenges are in green building.
“Wading through the greenwash”
“Getting customers to buy into it.”
Those are a few of the common answers. But one answer that’s all too common is “Convincing my building inspector that what I want to do is better than what (s)he wants me to do.”
When we talk to building inspectors about _their_ biggest challenges in green building, they tell us that it’s the magnitude of new stuff they need to learn in order to keep up with it.
Many inspectors are reluctant to accept non-traditional ways of doing things because they represent the line of health and safety requirements in homes–building inspectors are protectors of the people. But green building is a better way to build and actually represents a higher standard of health and safety. So inspectors ought to be welcoming it with open arms (which some do).
The main problem is one of information and communication.
At Green Building Advisor, we’ve built a sizable information base in our Green Building Encyclopedia
and a good communication tool in our forums
. This new Building Code forum
is designed to bridge the gap between information and communication.
, the Chief Building Official from Norfolk Virginia will lurk in the forum and answer the good questions (after all, he’s got a day job so we can’t ask him to answer the bad ones too). But we’d like to invite other building officials to join the discussion.
Inspectors: What are your biggest challenges in accepting green building practices?
Builders and remodelers: Are there examples you’d like to share on how you smoothed over the speed bumps? How did you get your local building inspector to buy in to a sealed crawlspace, or un-vented roof?
How can we help builders, architects, and inspectors solve problems so that we can get on with the business of building better, more durable, healthful houses?
Visit our new Building Code Forum.