Pulte Homes Green Team
The Pulte Homes "Green Team"
• Pulte Homes expanded the internal “green team” that it created in 2007 to a broader cross-functional, company-wide team of sustainability leaders in 2008. The Pulte green team is governed by a steering committee that reports directly to senior management and helps to evaluate current green building products and practices, benchmark division progress, understand existing and pending environmental and resource legislation, and recommend goals and initiatives to senior management that fit within Pulte’s Company strategy.
• Since the inception of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) ENERGY STAR® program in 1996, Pulte has built nearly 70,000 ENERGY STAR®-certified homes, more than any other homebuilder. More than 45,000 of those homes have been built since 2004. Pulte division operations continue to expand the implementation of ENERGY STAR® criteria; for example, starting January 1, 2009, all Pulte homes in Michigan will be ENERGY STAR®-certified. Nationwide, approximately 70 percent of new Pulte homes are being built to ENERGY STAR® standards, a number we plan to increase in coming years.
• Pulte Homes recently received recognition from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) for the Company’s outstanding achievements in the DOE “Builders Challenge” program. Builders Challenge, launched in 2008, is a voluntary energy-savings program with a goal of constructing homes that are at least 30 percent more energy efficient than a typical new home built to code with an ultimate goal of a zero-energy home. The program’s “E-Scale” allows homebuyers to see how the energy efficiency of a particular home compares to the DOE energy efficiency goal and other homes. Pulte’s Las Vegas and Phoenix divisions constructed 649 homes through the program’s standards in 2008, accounting for nearly 78 percent of all Builders Challenge homes nationwide last year.
• Pulte Homes has joined the EPA’s “Climate Leaders” program, becoming the first homebuilder to make this commitment. The Climate Leaders program provides guidance and recognition to companies developing long-term climate-change strategies. Partner companies commit to reducing their impact on the global environment by completing a corporate-wide inventory of their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, setting long-term reduction goals, and annually reporting their progress to EPA.
• Across the country, Pulte’s value engineering initiatives have reduced jobsite waste and construction cycle times. In our Mid-Atlantic division, panelization techniques utilize more efficient dimensions of lumber and cut down on packaging waste at the jobsite. The Mid-Atlantic division also pioneered a jobsite waste recycling program in 2008, which has already recycled more than 1,700 tons of construction waste—equivalent to more than 425 new homes worth of materials diverted from landfills. More than 8,000 pounds of waste is generated during the construction of the average 2,000-square-foot home. In the Mid-Atlantic area, we partnered with a local vendor to implement a construction waste recycling program that so far has enabled Pulte to recycle about 70 percent of its construction waste in this market, including cardboard, metal, drywall, paper, soils, carpet and concrete materials.
• Several Pulte divisions have replaced all lighting in model homes with compact fluorescent lighting (CFLs), and Pulte Homes is in the early stages of taking this initiative nationwide in 2009. Typical CFL bulbs consume as much as 75 percent less energy than incandescent bulbs and last 10 times longer. They also produce about 75 percent less heat, which reduces cooling costs. The Mid-Atlantic division’s conversion to CFL bulbs in the model homes of all 14 of its communities is anticipated to generate more than $150,000 in annual energy savings for the Company.
• In some New Mexico and Nevada communities, Pulte uses a “smart” irrigation system that is activated based on weather/moisture conditions instead of an automatic timer, while some communities reclaim water for landscaping use. Additionally, several Tucson and Las Vegas Pulte communities benefit from the use of tankless hot-water heaters.
• In addition to sustainability efforts in our homebuilding operations, we have focused on internal office sustainability and renewable energy. Pulte’s green team began tracking usage of and recommending reduction/reuse plans for office products and energy consumption at its Bloomfield Hills, Michigan headquarters in 2008. The team will focus on developing an internal office sustainability plan that can be implemented Company-wide in 2009, drawing on many of the best practices that Pulte’s corporate and division teams are embracing.