The U.S. Green Building Council, Natural Resources Defense Council and Congress for the New Urbanism (CNU) have launched the LEED for Neighborhood Development green neighborhoods rating system. The rating system encourages development within or near existing communities and/or public infrastructure in order to reduce the environmental impacts of sprawl, conserves land and promote transportation efficiency and walkability.

“Sustainable communities are prosperous communities for the occupants and businesses which inhabit them,” said Rick Fedrizzi, USGBC president, ceo and founding chair.

Projects certifying under LEED for Neighborhood Development must achieve points in three major environmental categories: Smart Location & Linkage, Neighborhood Pattern & Design, and Green Infrastructure & Buildings across a 110-point scale. For more information, visit www.usgbc.org .