Dallas has become one of the first cities in the United States to implement mandatory green building standards. As of October 1, 2013, all residential and commercial projects must meet the Dallas Green Construction Code’s minimum requirements or be certifiable under the LEED, Green Built Texas, or other green building standards.

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All new building projects in Dallas are expected to reduce water usage by 20 percent. LEED certified projects may achieve one point under the Water Use Reduction Credit or use 20 percent less water than the minimum stated in the Plumbing Code. In its enactment of the International Green Construction Code, the city of Dallas has deleted Chapter 6, which relates to energy conservation, and chose to keep the existing energy code requirements instead. Among other deleted segments of the code are those relating to alterations of existing buildings. A third party may review the city’s green building program.

Dallas has received praise for its recent implementation of green building standards but has caused a public debate with its treatment of LEED certifiable projects, which, according to some, violates the terms of usage of the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) rating system.