States with a green thumb
In 2012, green buildings sprouted up across Illinois like wild flowers (let’s say violets, since we’re talking about the Land of Lincoln.)
In fact, last year the state certified 156 LEED projects, representing 25 million square feet of real estate. In total, the state now has more than 700 LEED certified projects, representing more than 140 million square feet of real estate. That’s the equivalent of 30 Willis Towers.
The state’s leadership in green building – from the state house to city halls – has helped propel Illinois into the 5th spot on USGBC’s Top 10 LEED states – coming only behind DC, Virginia, Colorado and Massachusetts. Our annual ranking considered states based on the amount of 2012 LEED-certified space per capita.
“Since the day I took office I have been committed to making sure Illinois is the most environmentally-friendly state in the country,” Gov. Pat Quinn said. “I’m proud to have the U.S. Green Building Council recognize the success of our efforts to make sure sustainable practices are implemented in homes, schools and businesses throughout Illinois.”
As we celebrated the public and private sector leaders who helped make Illinois a national leader in green building (Gov. Quinn standing out as an absolute stalwart for green building), I wondered more about all they did to get here.
Upon further reflection, it seems that states like Illinois and others on the Top 10 list have some common farming practices, if you will. They grow green because they nurture this burgeoning industry (see the Booz Allen Hamilton study that shows green building accounts for nearly half a trillion dollars in annual economic activity).
Kind of like those books about the 7 habits of the most highly effective people, these states stand out for having many of the same green thumb strategies that significantly help cultivate greener, healthier places to live, work and learn.
Read more: What do these states have in common?