Delaware establishes advisory group on green building policy
The checkerboard floors of the Delaware State Senate were busy with activity well after midnight on June 30—yes, Sunday night—during the final hours of the 2013 legislative session. The Legislature considered a wide range of measures this spring, and it decided this past weekend to also establish a new committee to advise the state on green building policy.
With all the triple bottom line benefits that green buildings have to offer, there’s no wonder the state sees value in exploring ways to facilitate greater green building activity. Already, the First State boasts more than 300 green building activities and more than 9 million square feet of LEED- or ENERGY STAR-certified space. That’s a lot to be proud of.
The Green and Better Building Advisory Committee was sponsored by Sen. Harris McDowell, Sen. David McBride and Rep. John Kowalko. Volunteers with the Delaware Valley Green Building Council (DVGBC) worked closely with these state legislators, providing testimony in January in support of this measure to guide green building policy.
Senate Concurrent Resolution No. 34 establishes the committee, lists key perspectives that will be represented and charges the committee to review “legislation that pertains to healthy, high performance green buildings and sustainable land use,” and also to “provide current and well-researched information and advice to the General Assembly.” A similar effort in Hawaii this spring (SCR 156) did not survive the session.
Dan Schneckenburger, DVGBC-Delaware Branch advocacy chairman and director of N. Barton and Associates Mechanical, followed the Legislature’s activity on the resolution to the very end. “This is a really foundational step in the right direction,” he said of the committee. “You can’t manage what you don’t measure—that’s what green building gets you. But you won’t get green building policy right unless you’ve got the right group of advisers—that’s what this resolution is all about.”