Sustainable Design

Sustainable Header

Green building technologies like site planning, tree canopy coverage, and green roofs have positive impacts on communities and the environment, including reduction of stormwater runoff, improved air and water quality, mitigation of urban heat island effect, and energy savings. ASLA supports efforts to encourage the use of these technologies and other design techniques that will create more sustainable communities.

Federal Advocacy

Accessible Design: ASLA works to keep our members informed on compliance with the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) and to disseminate information on accessible design standards.  Beginning on March 15, 2012, entities must comply with the revised design standards adopted in the 2010 Standards for Accessible Design that were announced by the Department of Justice in the Federal Register on September 15, 2010. The Access Board adopted these revisions or changes in a series of rules that addressed recreation facilities, play areas, and certain State and local government facilities. Learn more.

Energy Conservation Through Trees Act of 2011 : Introduced in 2011 by Rep. Doris Matsui (CA), H.R. 2095 is designed to help improve air quality and lower the need for energy consumption. The legislation includes key recommendations by ASLA and specifically mentions the Society in the bill. 
Learn more.

The Small Business Environmental Stewardship Assistance Act of 2010: ASLA supports legislation (H.R. 4509 and S. 3279)  that promotes tree planting in urban and suburban areas that would provide jobs and revitalize communities by beautifying retail storefronts, rental housing, and local parks. Learn more.

Green Energy Education Act: ASLA worked with Congressman Mike McCaul (TX) to re-introduce The Green Energy Education Act (H.R. 957), which would award grants to university programs related to the design and construction of high performance buildings. The legislation specifically states that, in awarding grants, the Department of Energy should give priority to university programs in design, architecture, landscape architecture, and city, regional, or urban planning.  A primary goal of the legislation is to improve the ability of landscape architects, engineers, architects, and planners to work together on the incorporation of advanced energy technologies during the design and construction of buildings. Learn more.

The GREEN Act: Introduced by Congressman Ed Perlmutter (CO), H.R. 2336, The Green Resources for Energy-Efficient Neighborhoods (GREEN) Act, was re-introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives on May 7, 2010.  The GREEN Act recognizes the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA), and landscape architects’ expertise in site planning, tree canopy coverage, and green roofs, and provides incentives for consumers to buy, build, or remodel their homes and businesses to improve their energy efficiency. The legislation also allows mortgage companies to issue energy efficient mortgages, and location efficient mortgages, both of which offer incentives for reducing energy consumption. 
Learn more.

Public Policies

Environmental Education (pdf)
Environmental Sustainability (pdf)
Open Space (pdf)
Preservation of Historic Sites, Districts, and Landscapes (pdf)
Public Lands (pdf)
Public Participation (pdf)
Rural Landscapes (pdf)
Transgenic Plants and the Environment (pdf)
Transportation Corridors and Facilities (pdf)
Urban Growth and Development (pdf)
Vegetation in the Built Environment (pdf)
Water Quality and Conservation (pdf)
Wetlands (pdf)
Wildlife and Wildlife Habitat (pdf) 

See full list of ASLA Public Policies

Advocacy Partners

American Institute of Architects 
Architecture 2030
High Performance Building Congressional Caucus Coalition 
Sustainable Urban Forest Coalition 
U.S. Green Building Council 


General Resources:
Code of Federal Regulations 
Federal Courts 
Federal Government Web Portal – FirstGov 
Federal Register
The Official Daily Publication of Federal Rules, Notices of
Rule Making Procedures, and Agency Announcements

Government Printing Office 
Thomas - House/Senate Bills & Resolutions 
The White House 
The Supreme Court 
U.S. Code – Federal Statutes 
U.S. House 
U.S. House Legislative Calendar 
U.S Senate 
U.S. Senate Legislative Calendar 

Advocacy Network
Advocacy RSS
Advocacy News
Track Federal & State Legislation



Roxanne Blackwell, 
Esq., Hon. ASLA,
Director of Federal
Government Affairs

Elizabeth Hebron,
Director of State
Government Affairs