COLUMBIA, Md., March 2 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Enterprise joins
Congressmen Adam Smith (D-WA), Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), John Lewis (D-GA)
and Wayne Gilchrest (R-MD) in support of legislation to "green" affordable
housing by promoting energy efficiency, resource conservation and
sustainable development in low-income communities across the country.
More than 2.5 million families in America live in substandard housing.
Nearly 17 percent of a low-income family's earnings are consumed by energy
costs. And environmental challenges take a disproportionate toll on
limited- income families -- both asthma rates and blood lead levels are
significantly higher among low-income children. Building green addresses a
host of pressing problems facing many families and communities, including
run-down and unhealthy housing, rising transportation and energy costs, and
sprawling, unsustainable development.
This legislation, the High Performance Buildings Act of 2007,
thoughtfully builds on lessons Enterprise has learned through its national
Green Communities initiative, a $555 million commitment to build more than
8,500 environmentally responsive, affordable homes. This is the nation's
largest, most ambitious initiative focused on leveraging private capital
investments to significantly increase the production of green affordable
housing across the country. To date, only two years into the five-year
initiative, Enterprise has helped to finance more than 7,000 green
Enterprise strongly supports the bill's emphasis on ensuring that
community development organizations have the resources and expertise
necessary to successfully incorporate green elements into their affordable
"Enterprise is working to change the way Americans think about, design,
locate and build homes affordable to low-income families," said Doris Koo,
Enterprise's president and chief executive officer. "This legislation makes
strides in meeting the needs of low-income families, who stand to benefit
the most from housing that is healthy, energy-efficient and located near
schools, jobs and transportation. We look forward to working with members
of Congress and our colleagues in the housing and sustainable development
fields to pass this critical bill."
In addition to Enterprise, the High Performance Buildings Act is
endorsed by the American Public Health Association, Global Green USA, the
Local Initiatives Support Corporation, the National Center for Healthy
Housing and the National Housing Conference.
Enterprise is a leading provider of the development capital and
expertise it takes to create decent, affordable homes and rebuild
communities. For more than two decades, Enterprise has pioneered
neighborhood solutions through public-private partnerships with financial
institutions, governments, community organizations and others that share
our vision. Enterprise has raised and invested $7 billion in equity, grants
and loans and is currently investing in communities at a rate of $1 billion
a year. Visit http://www.enterprisecommunity.com to learn more about
Enterprise's efforts to build communities and opportunity, and to meet some
of the half a million people we have helped.