The International Code Council has issued a policy position on green building and sustainable communities to emphasize its commitment to social responsibility and public safety.

“Building safety professionals and others in the construction industry have long had a positive impact on the environment,” said ICC board President Wally Bailey. “Strong, durable buildings that are safe and affordable have a smaller impact on the world’s limited resources. ICC is committed to educating our members on green building and participating in activities with other organizations that will assure green building practices are sustainable and safe.”

The policy outlines several initiatives to support green building, including educating its members on programs available for achieving environmentally responsible buildings. The code council will advocate for green building in the legislative, regulatory and codes arenas. It will promote environmental features of the I-Codes and how the international codes support green building, according to the policy.

“Our organization is already a champion for green building,” said International Code Council CEO Rick Weiland. “This policy reinforces our commitment to the environment and assures that our members play an important role on matters related to green building.”

The council reports that historically it has supported green building and the use of environmentally friendly alternative building materials. ICC promotes the benefits of green building in its magazine, Building Safety Journal, which includes an annual issue devoted to environmentally responsible building.

The International Code Council recently moved its headquarters to a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design-certified building in Washington, D.C. Among the green features in the council’s new world headquarters are energy efficiency, rainwater collection, high-efficiency HVAC and lighting systems, water-efficient fixtures and waterless urinals, and use of recycled content materials.

“The International Code Council’s commitment to green building reflects its vision to protect the health and well-being of people and the environment,” said Rick Fedrizzi, president, CEO & founding chair of the U.S. Green Building Council. “The Council’s leadership sets a wonderful example for its members, its employees, and other organizations around the world, and will lead to safer, healthier communities for us all.”

The U.S. Department of Energy continues to reference the International Energy Conservation Code as the benchmark for conserving resources used in construction and daily living. In a report issued to the International Code Council Industry Advisory Committee by the Task Group on Green Buildings, it concluded that there were very few, if any, serious barriers in the I-Codes that would inhibit green building techniques and methods.