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LID LEED and Policy (24 Feb 2011)


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A paradigm shift is on-going from high impact development to low impact development. There are proponents and opponents to these established building practices.

'Nobody' is asking to prove that conventional development isn't 'bad' for the environment. "Everybody' wants to prove that LEED and LID are 'good' for the environment.

Published in: Real Estate
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LID LEED and Policy (24 Feb 2011)

  1. 1. LID and Policy: SustainableDevelopment PracticesWhat is Stopping Us?Jon Barsanti JrMasters in City and Regional PlanningBA Interdisciplinary Study in Biology and Chemistryjbarsanti@alumni.unc.edu919.943.1915 24, 2011
  2. 2. Goals ofPresentationIdentifyProblemsProvide PossibleSolutionsBe a ReferenceGuide
  3. 3. Who is holding us back B N N A I O N M My A B D N Y A
  4. 4. Who is holding us back Build Not Not Almost In OnNothing My My Almost Back- DimeNowhere YardAnytime
  5. 5. Who Why Why NotDevelopers Others Aren’t “Cost” Designers Right Thing ResistanceDepartments Reduces Costs Ordinances Decision Good All Fear of Loss Makers Around
  6. 6. Law of Unintended Consequences:As average house size increasesimpervious surface area increases
  7. 7. All Development Occurs in a Watershed Wetlands are more than Undevelopable LandStream Buffers Impact Development and Developments Impact Stream Buffers All Land Uses have a Pollutant/Volume Profile
  8. 8. Undeveloped Land can be valuable LID & LEED can improve Water Quality and Quantity; Cost LessNeed to view Run-off as a Resource Net Density versus Gross Density
  9. 9. All Development Occurs in a WatershedWatershed Critical AreasWatershedProtected Areas Barriers:Remainder • “Highest and Best Use of the Land” of the • One person’s/community’s out-flow is another’s intakeWatershed
  10. 10. Wetlands are more than Undevelopable Land Nutrient filtration systems Manage volume and sediment load Wildlife habitat preservation Barriers: Wetlands have been filled and built upon, leaving areas flood proneNeed to be seen from environmental, aesthetic, and water quality perspectives
  11. 11. Stream Buffers Impact Development Developments Impact Stream Buffers Stream Buffers protect encroachment on ecosystem by development Stream Buffers Protect development from encroachment by ecosystem (e.g. floods.) Barriers: Inconsistent setbacks between communities; Vertical versus Horizontal Setbacks
  12. 12. Stream Buffers Impact DevelopmentDevelopments Impact Stream Buffers Buffers Address Sedimentation (100 ft) Phosphorus and Nitrogen Levels (100ft) Wildlife Habitats (35-100 – 300 ft) Trout streams (100 ft)
  13. 13. All Land Uses have aPollutant/Volume Profile Volume of water flow NutrientsTemperature of water flowing off the land Toxins Bacteria From Kimberly Brewer’s Presentation to the TJCOG Smart Growth Committee
  14. 14. All Land Uses have a Pollutant/Volume Profile Sources Land-Use Contribution Contribution to N Load to P Load Residential (SF) 29% 12% Residential (MF) Agriculture 36% 51% Forest 19% 15% Commercial/ 9% 6% Industrial Other 7% 16% Non – Point Source Pollution OnlyData from A Nutrient Credit Trading Framework for the Jordan Lake Watershed: Using Market-Based Mechanisms to Make Watershed Restoration More Cost-Effective
  15. 15. All Land Uses have a Pollutant/Volume Profile Sources Land-Use Contribution Contribution to N Load to P Load Residential (SF) 14% 29% 12% Residential (MF) 1% Agriculture 20% 36% 51% Forest 56% 19% 15% Commercial/ 3% 9% 6% Industrial Other 6% 7% 16%Data from A Nutrient Credit Trading Framework for the Jordan Lake Watershed: Using Market-Based Mechanisms to Make Watershed Restoration More Cost-Effective
  16. 16. Nitrogen in the soilMicrobes are part of the answer It is estimated that 40% of all chemical nitrogen fertilizer additions are never used by plants. Some bacteria convert nitrogen into ammonia by the process called nitrogen fixation; Other bacteria bring about transformations of ammonia to nitrate, and of nitrate to nitrogen and other nitrogen gases; Many bacteria and fungi degrade organic matter, releasing nitrogen for reuse by other organisms.
  17. 17. Nitrogen absorbing Plants are part of the answerIn the warm season, water convolvulus showed moreactivity than mint, jute or water hyacinth (a plant widely usedagainst eutrophication).In the cold season, calla lily showed the highest level ofactivity. Thus, the plant species need to be selecteddepending on the season.Both plants can be effectively used to improve water qualityand as useful resources after harvest. (author abst.) Evaluation of Plants for Absorbing Nitrogen and Phosphorus to Purify Eutrophic Water
  18. 18. SoilCompactionOccurs inalmost allsituationsHow much isreversible?
  19. 19. Table 1: Comparison of Bulk Density for undisturbedSoils and Common Urban Conditions (Compiled fromvarious sources)Undisturbed Soil Type or Urban Surface BulkCondition Density (g/cc)Peat 0.2 to 0.3Compost 1.0Sandy Soil 1.1 to 1.3Silty sands 1.4Silt 1.3 to 1.4Silt Loams 1.2 to 1.5Organic Silts/Clays 1.0 to 1.2Glacial Till 1.6 to 2.0Urban Lawns 1.5 to 1.9Crushed Rock Parking Lot 1.5 to 2.0Urban Fill Soils 1.8 to 2.0Athletic Fields 1.8 to 2.0ROW and Building Pads 1.5 to 1.8(85% Compaction)ROW and Building Pads 1.6 to 2.1(95% Compaction)Concrete Pavement 2.2Quartzite 2.65
  20. 20. Reversing Compacted Soils • Soil Amendments • Compost Amendments • Reforestation • Time
  21. 21. Benefits of Compost Amendments Compost Amendments Can: • Increase Porosity • Reduce Peak Flows • Produce Thicker lawns • Reduce Fertilizer Applications and Watering Needs • Create better lawns, faster EPA/600/R-00/016
  22. 22. FAQ regarding Compost Amendments • Increase Concentrations of N and P • Decreases Volume of Run-off • Decrease Total N & P • Can be tilled or applied directly • 2:1 ratio soil to compost tilled to at least 12 inches EPA/600/R-00/016 • Construction compaction can reacha600r00016/epa600r00016.pdf 24 inches
  23. 23. Other perspectives on Compost Amendments Barriers: It takes time and money tomeasure predevelopment conditions and post-development conditionsCost to amend soil decreases, per lot, as area amended increases
  24. 24. LID Can Improve Water Quality & Water Quantity How we develop/redevelop Where we develop (and where we do not) What we do with the Run-off (Pipe or Percolate) What is disturbed – What is conserved?
  25. 25. LID Can Improve Water Quality & Water QuantityIncreasing density increases run-off for thewatershed and decreases the run-off per household
  26. 26. LID Can Improve Water Quality & Water Quantity • Impacts on Land Start At the Grading Stage • Fertilizers can have an impact on water quality, even in LID Neighborhoods • Volume and Peak Flows were kept at predevelopment levels. • Need to Control Compaction, Minimize Soil Disturbance, and have on-site supervision.
  27. 27. LID Can Improve Water Quality & Water Quantity NAHB reports that conventional development negatively impacts water-related ecosystems through Impervious Surfaces (Volume and quality) Introduction of Contaminants Site Location of Development relative to natural features
  28. 28. LID Can Improve Water Quality & Water Quantity Perceived Barrier: It costs more and does not provide a benefit to the builder Actual Barrier: Educating the entire community to the value versus costs of LID (Almost always costs less than conventional)
  29. 29. LID Can Improve Water Quality & Water Quantity … (In) the vast majority of cases, significant savings were realized due to: • reduced costs for site grading and preparation; • stormwater infrastructure, site paving, and landscaping; • Total capital cost savings ranged from 15 to 80 percent when LID methods were used...
  30. 30. LID Can Improve WaterQuality & Water Quantity
  31. 31. LID Can Improve Water Quality & Water Quantity • Site Design was 103 Lots on 24 Acres • Conventional Site Design required 270,000 Cu Ft of Stormwater Facilities • LID Required 55,000 cu ft of stormwater facilities • 62% of land was saved as open space • Cost Savings of 20% to the Developer • 10% More units were able to be built than conventional design would have allowed.Managing stormwater in Pierce County: Kensington Estates case study sheds light on low impact development
  32. 32. LID: How do we define conservation/disturbedType of Residential Disturbed Open Space Conserved SpaceDevelopment SpaceLow Density Could be entire Yes – may be yard No(e.g. 1 unit/2a) siteCluster Could Be entire Fragmented No siteOpen Space 50% or less 50% or More Open Space can be undevelopableConservation Less than 50% More than 50% Undevelopable area excludedBarrier(s): How each is defined varies by community/county
  33. 33. What is being conserved? subdivision%20design%20handbook.pdf
  34. 34. What is being conserved? Belvedere Subdivision – Charlottesville, VA
  35. 35. What is being conserved? 2008 Green Project of the Year NAHB Green Building Award Hidden Lakes Preserve Wake Forest, NC
  36. 36. What is being conserved? Area of Future Development Hidden Lakes Preserve Wake Forest, NC
  37. 37. What is being conserved? Pleasant Green Farms – Hillsborough, NC – Durham County
  38. 38. What is being conserved? Bundoran Farm -- North Garden, VA
  39. 39. What is being conserved? Green/Dark Blue – Active Forestry Wildlife Habitat Pale Yellow – Public Viewshed Pale Peach – Productive Farmland Aqua Stream Corridor & Wetlands Bundoran Farm -- North Garden, VA
  40. 40. Need to change thinking from stormwater as waste to stormwater as resource. Impervious surface coverage impacts the micro-climate at water basin and larger areas Withdrawing just a little more than recharge rate impacts everyone OurWaterComonsOctober2008English.pdf
  41. 41. Need to change thinking from stormwater as waste to stormwater as resource. 1) Utilization of Opportunistic Available Water 2) Storage and Conveyance 3) Water Treatment Technologies 4) Non-Point Source Pollution Control 5)Closed Loop Water Management of Water Supply, Stormwater, andt_events/sc_water_resources/t4_proceedings_presentations/t4_zip/zimmer.pdf ENTS/Wingspread%20Final%20Report.pdf Wastewater.
  42. 42. Need to change from Environment or Economy to Environment & Economy The concept of the Cities of the Future, the fifth paradigm of urbanization… is a paradigm of integration • Future, and existing, urban developments will accommodate landscape, drainage, transportation and habitat infrastructure systems • Cities will be resilient to extreme hydrological events and pollution • There will be an optimal balance between recreation, navigation and other economic uses of water.
  43. 43. Water is Water Paradigm Shift All Development Impacts Water Quality Highest use versus the best use of the land Wetlands and stream buffers are undervalued One community’s outflow is another community’s intakeReducing usage of drinking water for irrigation and toilets
  44. 44. Barriers to Implementing LEED Across the Region Report questions weighting of Indoor Air Quality And how a project COULD be LEED Platinum and get no points for IAQ.
  45. 45. Barriers to Implementing LEED Across the Region • Formaldehyde • Second Hand Tobacco Smoke • Particulates • Pesticides • Flame Retardants PBDEs • Drinking Water • Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) • Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs) • Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) • Artificial Turf
  46. 46. Barriers to Implementing LEED Across the Region September 2010 – EPA Draft Report: Opportunities for Green Building (GB) Rating Systems to Improve Indoor Air Quality Certain LEED options are heat and humidity related and cannot be used in all regions of the country
  47. 47. Barriers to Implementing LEED Across the Region “The main idea of LEED was to reduce environmental impacts of buildings on their surrounding environment. Nevertheless, new research studies are emerging, so it will be possible to understand more detailed building impacts on its environment as well as to develop new strategies for addressing intermittent environmental impacts on the building itself due to extreme weather conditions and increased outdoor air pollution.”
  48. 48. Barriers to Implementing LEED Across the Region Moderately high temperatures and humidity in buildings have been associated with: • Increased occupant discomfort, perceptions of poor indoor air • Unsolicited occupant complaints • Reduced productivity • Adverse respiratory health symptoms
  49. 49. LEED is Evolving
  50. 50. 120,000 Electric Primary Energy Consumption Transportation Primary (Trillion BTU )(1949-2009)100,000 Industrial Primary Commercial Primary Residential Primary 80,000 60,000 40,000 20,000 0 1949 1951 1953 1955 1957 1959 1961 1963 1965 1967 1969 1971 1973 1975 1977 1979 1981 1983 1985 1987 1989 1991 1993 1995 1997 1999 2001 2003 2005 2007 2009
  51. 51. Barriers to Implementing LEED Across the Region Similar to Implementing LID “Everybody knows….” it costs more.
  52. 52. Barriers to Implementing LEED Across the Region Its is not about the costs/price It is about playing up the benefits Cost is a Negative Term
  53. 53. Barriers to Implementing LEED Across the Region Pricing premiums ranging from ZERO to 6.27% Energy Savings from 23% to 50% Water Savings from Zero to 78%
  54. 54. Case Study: Residential Development • 73 Projects • Range Under 5 Acres to Over 100 Acres • Utilization of LEED techniques depend on points awarded and cost to develop • Gold and Platinum Certified Utilize Green Technologies and Green Construction • Platinum tend to include affordable housing and Habitat/wetland restoration
  55. 55. November 19, 2010 San Diego – South Orange County Restrictions on Lawn Irrigation Run-off Restrictions on Car Wash Run-off
  56. 56. Toxic, Carcinogenic Pollutant in Common Surface sealer December 6, 2010 40 lakes in residential and commercial areas PAH in the H20 • Coal-tar-based sealants contribute 50% • Vehicles account for 25% • Coal combustion 20%Science of The Total Environment Volume 409, Issue 2, 15 December 2010, Pages 334-344
  57. 57. “Potential to Modify Clearing, Grading, and Landscaping Practices Project (2001) Value placed on landscapes that are “Natural,” “Attract Wildlife” “Provide Privacy and screen noise,” Minimal Lawn Dissatisfied group bought homes over 250,000 without/preferred landscaping Dissatisfied group most likely to have planted shrubs, trees, native plants after moving into new house. ToModify.pdf
  58. 58. Our Floating Future? • Research by NC State University and Bill Hunt • Being Tested in City of Durham – Hillendale Golf Course and Museum of Life and Science • Originated in Montana (2000) • Costs: $30/sq ft"When all the plants have grown up, youdont actually see any of the green plastic. • Benefit: “natural”Its just a lush green environment on top of removal of Phosphorus andthe pond, so in theory theres a habitat for Nitrogen usingfish, frogs, wildlife as well." Ryan Winston wetland/bog plantsNews and Observer – 4/14/2010
  59. 59. Barriers to Implementing LID Across the RegionNeed to look at Decentralized solution for a Decentralized problem Our ordinances hold us back “Everybody knows….” Maintaining it after it is built
  60. 60. Conclusion We have a new resource We can ‘sing from the same songbook.’ We can customize our solutions to meet the requirements of our communities and our region. We can have a Win-Win-Win for the consumer, the developer, and the community. If we ‘only’ apply to new construction, existing conditions will ‘only’ not get worse.
  61. 61.
  62. 62. Jon Barsanti 919.943.1915Presentation available at