The Sustainable Sites Initiative™

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/.