The Sustainable Sites Initiative (SITES™) is a new national effort to create voluntary guidelines and benchmarks that promote sustainable land design and construction practices. Jointly sponsored by the American Society of Landscape Architects, the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, and the
U. S. Botanic Garden; SITES™ provides a ranking system that awards points for comprehensive sustainable land practices for built projects. The program is complementary to LEED® (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Green Building Rating System, and it is anticipated that the SITES™ criteria will be incorporated into future versions of LEED®.
SITES™ has nine areas of focus—hydrology, soils and vegetation, materials, monitoring, operations and maintenance, construction, pre-design assessment, site selection, and human health and well-being. For more information on Sustainable Sites and to see examples of how these can be incorporated into residential landscapes, visit their website at http://www. sustainablesites. org/.