Jamaica's first green community, the Richmond Housing Development
(RDC) in St Ann, Jamaica was officially launched on Saturday, September 17, with Housing, Environment and Water Minister Dr Horace Chang calling for other developers to follow RDC's chairman Lee Issa's example. Dr Chang hailed the development as the future of housing in Jamaica and said RDC had showcased the possibilities and paved the way for future improvements to the way we build and, ultimately, the way we impact the earth.
Units at the Palms, consisting of three-bedroom, two-bathroom houses, boast thermo bars on the roof to reduce heat penetration, thereby reducing the necessity to use cooling systems such as air-condition units or fans. Water heaters and street lights in the community are also run by solar energy. The development has an eco-friendly sewage disposal facility, and also provides the option of rain-water harvesting. The community also has guidelines for residents that will ensure that the area remains green, including a ban on the use of high-phosphate fertiliser on the lots, and restrictions against cutting down trees of a certain size without the consent of all owners in the community.