Green Building
Office of Sustainability  

This page provides an overview of the City's green building efforts, access to many green building resources, information about green building practices and materials for homeowners and builders, and links to many other green building sites.

Green building practices focus on improving both the environment and the health and comfort of building occupants. Proven green building techniques reduce energy, water, and materials use and improve air quality, temperature control, and access to day-light and views for building occupants. Green buildings have lower operating costs and similar construction costs to conventional buildings. Over the life of the building, significant savings are realized.

Demolition Debris Recycling (C&D) Program

    C&D Ordinance
    Waste Management Plan Application
     Haulers and Waste Disposal Facilities 

    In response to State-mandated waste reduction goals and as part of the City’s commitment to sustainable development, the City of Long Beach adopted an ordinance that requires certain demolition and/or construction projects to divert at least 60% of waste either through recycling, salvage or deconstruction.

    The Construction & Demolition Debris Recycling (C&D) Program, which will take effect on November 5, 2007, will aim to encourage permit applicants to recycle all C&D materials through a refundable performance deposit. This program also encourages the use of green building techniques in new construction and promote reuse or salvaging of recyclable materials in demolition, deconstruction, and construction projects.

    A Waste Management Plan (WMP) will now accompany the building permit application for any “Covered Project.” The WMP must be completed and approved prior to permits being issued. The WMP details how the project will meet the 60 percent requirement.

    At the conclusion of the project, a final report detailing the amount of reuse, recycling, and disposal actually generated from the project must be submitted and approved prior to the applicant receiving refund of the performance deposit. Projects that do not meet the 60% requirement may receive a partial refund in proportion to actual diversion.

    Applicants will be required to submit a Performance Security Deposit as well as pay an administrative review fee. The Performance Security Deposit is either 3% of project value or $51,500, whichever is less (REFUNDABLE). The minimum deposit is $1,545 per project. The Administrative Review Fee is either 1/4% of project value or $2,652, whichever is less. The minimum fee is $129.

    Submit the Final Report and Compliance Form portion of the WMP to the Building & Planning Department within 30 days of project completion with total material actually disposed and diverted, by type, in order to receive performance deposit refund. Appropriate documentation must accompany this report in order to comply with this ordinance.

Green Building for Private Development

    On November 21, 2006, the Long Beach City Council adopted interim Green Building Requirements for Private Development as the first step to an ongoing stakeholder process (see Green Ribbon Committee below) to develop permanent Green Building Guidelines for Private Development in Long Beach. The interim policy applies to all new projects that apply for development entitlements and meet the policy thresholds, beginning November 22, 2006 until the date that a permanent policy is adopted and becomes effective:

      All private development projects that meet the following criteria will be required prior to the issuance of a Certificate of Occupancy, to have registered their project with the U.S. Green Building Council with the intent to achieve a minimum level of LEED Certified in their final building design OR to provide third-party verification that they meet the equivalent of the minimum requirements of LEED Certification in the final building design to the satisfaction of the Director of Planning and Building.

      Interim Green Building Policy minimum thresholds:

      • Residential/Mixed Use: 50 or more housing units
      • Commercial/Industrial: 50,000 or more square feet building area

Green Building for City Projects

In June 2003, City Council unanimously adopted the City's new Green Building Policy.

The Municipal Green Building Policy requires the City to:

  • Plan, design, construct, manage, renovate, and maintain facilities and buildings in a sustainable manner.

  • Use the US Green Building Council LEED Rating System and achieve LEED Certification for all new City projects and additions of over 7,500 square feet.

  • Apply it to City constructed and owned new construction & additions of over 7,500 square feet

  • Budget appropriations for projects to include funding to meet the policy requirements.

The Policy also includes building remodel and retrofit goals, and green infrastructure goals.

The Policy calls on the City to pilot test private sector incentives such as:

  • Making Green Building a selection criteria for city released RFPs

  • Providing lower-cost expedited plan check and zoning incentives.

  • Establishing a Green Building speakers bureau and Mayor's award.

View Long Beach's Green Building Policy for Municipal Projects

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