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Green Building

Green build­ing tech­niques use envi­ron­men­tally sus­tain­able mate­ri­als to con­struct build­ings that con­serve resources and save energy, both in their con­struc­tion and in their oper­a­tion, and pro­vide healthy liv­ing or work­ing space. Howard County green build­ing require­ments and State and local tax cred­its are based on the United States Green Build­ing Council’s Lead­er­ship in Energy and Envi­ron­men­tal Design (LEED) Guide­lines. Infor­ma­tion about LEED Guide­lines is avail­able at: U.S. Green Build­ing Coun­cil.

Green Build­ing Requirements

Howard County is a leader in build­ing “green” in pub­lic spaces:

  • Most new pub­licly funded build­ings (30% or more County fund­ing), larger than 10,000 square feet must attain a LEED Sil­ver rating.
  • Most new pri­vate build­ings larger than 50,000 square feet must attain a LEED Cer­ti­fied rating.

Howard County also has a Green Neigh­bor­hood pro­gram which is imple­mented by the Depart­ment of Plan­ning and Zoning.

Tax Cred­its

Howard County pro­vides tax cred­its for “high per­for­mance build­ings”.   Qual­i­fy­ing com­mer­cial and res­i­den­tial build­ings receive tax cred­its when the build­ings are built to cer­tain LEED and equiv­a­lent stan­dards.  For more infor­ma­tion about the high per­for­mance build­ing cred­its, please visit Howard County’s Finance Depart­ment page.

Maryland’s state gov­ern­ment allows a green build­ing tax credit for busi­nesses that con­struct or reha­bil­i­tate a build­ing con­form­ing to spe­cific stan­dards intended to save energy and mit­i­gate envi­ron­men­tal impacts. The Mary­land Energy Admin­is­tra­tion offers incen­tives such as tax cred­its and rebates for energy effi­ciency. Please visit their web­site for details on state res­i­den­tial and busi­ness programs.


In addi­tion to tax cred­its, the Mary­land Energy Admin­is­tra­tion oper­ates a Com­mer­cial Clean Energy Grant Pro­gram. These grants are avail­able for small or large projects. Please check the web­site for details and the lat­est requirements.

Green Tip

Unplug.40% of the electricity used to power home electronics is consumed while they’re turned off.