But, this article discusses how simply building a green building in a sea of unsustainable surroundings is really incremental improvement at best:
Much though I appreciate the goal of building green, without a larger perspective on the context for the buildings, it is nothing more than greenwashing. A green big box store on a greenfield requiring miles of infrastructure is simply not sustainable. The USGBC is attempting to remedy this situation through its LEED for Neighborhood Development, but all LEED rating systems should incorporate prohibitions on developing in an unsustainable fashion. In addition, green building regulations from government entities must also incorporate context into their requirements.