Historic preservation is one vehicle communities can use to achieve many environmental sustainability goals, including:
Conserving energy. For example, wood-frame windows are proven to be as efficient as newly installed double-paned vinyl windows when properly maintained.
Improving air quality
Historic preservation and “green building” are shown to be mutually supportive when incorporating renewable energy technologies into historic buildings, such as micro-hydro electric power sources, solar, and geothermal.
A report produced by the Preservation Green Lab of the National Trust for Historic Preservation provides the most comprehensive analysis to date of the potential environmental benefit of building reuse. The Greenest Building: Quantifying the Environmental Value of Building Reuse, concludes that, when comparing buildings of equivalent size and function, building reuse almost always offers environmental savings over demolition and new construction. Visit the National Trust to learn more about the key findings from the report.