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Environmental impact design (EID) is the adaptation and the implementation of a design project, with regards to the supply of "public goods (social, natural, and aesthetic) and the development of landscapes. EID takes into account the environmental impact of every designed and developing project. Environmental impact design is concerned with modifications to the design of developmental projects to achieve positive environmental objectives – these are externalities, which benefit the environment, and raise the stock of "public goods. 
Environmental impact design can be broken down into three categorical types:
1. Direct impacts: Caused by the project and building process itself. The causes and effects are more predictable and thus easier to control and assess.
2. Indirect impacts: Impacts are usually more closely linked to the design project, and therefore may inflict more profound damages and effects on the environment. Over time, indirect impacts can affect larger geographical areas.
3. Cumulative impacts: May can cause damage to one or more ecosystems since they are synergetic effects.
Environmental impacts of design should not only be considered as they pertain to the project, but also as they associate with the site of the project. Similarly, Environmental Impact Design follows logically from "Environmental impact assessment. EID is related to EIA because it assesses the imposed percentage cost (often a small value) of the development to the owner, and the result is a large percentage benefit to the community.
Within the study of Environmental Impact Design, there is a focus on the construction process, materialization, and building efficiency. Historically in construction, the occupant is considered the most important factor in the building process. However, the sub-field of ecological building assesses the impact of buildings and construction materials on the environment, and develops strategies to minimize the corresponding negative effects . Low impact design and ecologically focused building practices originated in the post–World War II Germany. The widespread destruction of homes and city centers and a large homeless population gave Germans the chance to refocus building practices around the environment. The concept of "prefabrication was taken up in both East and West Germany where, in the 1950s and 60s, numerous new modular construction systems were developed for residential buildings .
In 1992, at the "Earth Summit in "Rio de Janeiro policymakers implemented Agenda 21 which focused on sustainable development at the local level. Four years later in 1996, the UN Conference on Human Settlements "Habitat II met in "Istanbul to discuss transferring sustainable building practices to an urban scale. From 1999 to 2003, the "U.S. Green Building Council kick-started the "Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design or (LEED) which is now the most well-known standard for green building.
A building life cycle is an approach to construction where pollution and energy use is considered not only in the current timeframe but over the life of the building. This theory has been expanded upon in recent years by architect "William McDonough and his trademark idea of "Cradle-to-cradle design. Cradle-to-cradle design along with the Triple Zero concept aim at lowering energy, emissions, and waste to zero. A successful life cycle building will use a variety of approaches such as the use of recycled materials in the construction process as well as green energy to reduce immediate environmental impacts and degradation for years to come. .
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