The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently released its greenhouse gas (GHG) data report in the form of a new online tool — an interactive map that lets members of the public see what facilities are the largest suppliers of fossil fuels and highest direct emitters of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.
Users can easily search for emitters by region, down to the street level, to see what type of greenhouse gases have been released as of 2010, at what quantities, and by whom.
Gina McCarthy, assistant administrator for EPA’s Office of Air and Radiation, explained that the new reporting map offers a tool for communities and businesses to find cost- and fuel-saving efficiencies. The information, she said, may also “foster technologies to protect public health and the environment.”
According to NAR’s 2011 Profile of Buyers and Sellers, home buyers are becoming more conscious of environmental efficiency and commuting costs when it comes to their home purchase due to higher energy expenditures as well as “an overall concern for the environment.” When it came to factors being considered when purchasing a home, environmentally friendly community features were listed as “very important” or “somewhat important” to nearly half of all buyers.
Real estate professionals can use the map to help educate their buyers, alleviate concerns, or help answer questions in their market.
Environmental factors that are most important to buyers are those “directly related to the buyers’ pocketbook,” according to the 2011 Profile of Buyers and Sellers survey. Heating and cooling costs were at least “somewhat” important to 87 percent of home buyers. Commuting costs were at least “somewhat” important to 73 percent of home buyers.
By Erica Christoffer, REALTOR® Magazine