The City of Austin, Texas began implementing sustainable guidelines in the early 1990s through Austin Energy Green Building (AEGB), the first comprehensive program in the U.S. designed to encourage sustainable practices in residential, commercial and municipal construction. In 2000, Austin became one of the first cities to require Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Silver certification for its new municipal buildings.
The LEED green building certification program is the nationally accepted benchmark for the design, construction and operation of high performance green buildings. The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) is the developer of the LEED certification program. USGBC is committed to a sustainable future for our nation through cost-efficient green buildings that ensure better environmental and health performance. AEGB is a City of Austin green building certification system similar to LEED.
It is the City of Austin's goal to continue to pursue sustainable practices and reduce the effects of climate change through green infrastructure, such as innovative storm water facilities which make use of natural and engineered systems to mimic natural processes that enhance environmental quality and provide utility services.