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In Industry 11.20.2014

Leveraging letters to the editor to tell your LEED story

Taking stock of all of the strategies and outlets in your green marketing tool belt? Don’t forget about letters to the editor, a time-honored practice that has provided grassroots campaigns, issue leaders and projects access to an invaluable audience and platform of exposure. Penning a letter to the editor of a local, regional or national publication is a method of engaging both the media and readers in a conversation, a conversation launched with your perspective. A letter is as much a...

In Industry 11.7.2014

Residential demand response: Be green by saving green

“Do you want to have more food on your table? Get a programmable thermostat.” The students in the mentoring program laughed, thinking my comment must have been entirely facetious. To an extent, it was: some new techno-gadget is not going to make a meal appear at dinner. It might, however, help pay for some of it. Saving energy is a key tenet to sustainability. Despite this, there are over $130 billion in energy-conservation opportunities available to Americans each year. ...

In Industry 11.5.2014

LEED User Groups: Connecting with attendees at Greenbuild 2014

This year I spent much of my time at Greenbuild working with our LEED User Groups—and it was fantastic! In case you’re not familiar with the User Groups, they are collaborative peer networks with the common goal of working together and with USGBC to share best known practices for green buildings in their sector, to collaborate on how LEED can be more applicable to their use type, and lead the way for greater adoption and efficiency. The inaugural Group, the LEED User Group:...

In Industry 10.28.2014

Five ways to follow the chain: How to know if a business is green

We all have our favorite places to browse, to hangout, to eat and to splurge. We have our favorite products that we reach for day after day. But how are we, as consumers, to know what our favorite brands are up to behind the scenes, and if they’re walking the walk, rather than just talking the talk about sustainability? With the release of the new LEED in Motion: Retail report, we’ve gained a valuable resource, a glimpse into the ways that retailers are engaging with the green...

In Industry 11.19.2014

New guidelines and workbook to raise awareness of green in your workplace

Looking to introduce environmentally friendly policies into your workplace? The USGBC Maine Chapter recently created a Green Office Guidelines and Workbook, which offers strategies related to sustainable practices in the areas of purchasing, electricity, water, heating, transportation/commuting, waste management, and social responsibility.  The guidelines in the workbook emphasize a holistic approach to sustainable office operations. Using a tree and leaf analogy, the guidelines...

In Industry 11.6.2014

USGBC Research: The Drive to Make Healthy Places Investable [Video]

The premiere health policy journal, Health Affairs, released a special issue this week focused on the intersection between community development and public health that was accompanied by a briefing at the National Press Club today. The issue compiles a range of articles focused on building healthy communities, measuring community health and collaborating for community health. USGBC Senior Research Fellow Matt Trowbridge* spearheaded an article that describes the need for the...

In Industry 10.30.2014

New sustainability report released: How California cities are changing the world

California could be the first major economy in the world to abandon fossil fuels as its primary energy source. California’s strategic energy policies foster an economic climate which generates funding for renewable energy, energy efficiency and innovative technology. In particular, proceeds from the state’s cap and trade auctions, mandates on utilities and the attraction of venture capital are funding renewable energy generation, energy efficiencymeasures in our buildings, and the...

In Industry 10.25.2014

Rick's 2014 Greenbuild Journal: Day 4—Thoughts on closing day

Living, breathing history While admittedly biased on the subject, as great as Greenbuild 2014 was, I’m not sure any aspect of this year’s conference moved me any more than the magical moment in the closing plenary when new USGBC president Roger Platt introduced eight seminal figures in the Green Building movement—Bob Berkebile, David Gottfried, Scot Horst, Martha Jane Murray, Tom Paladino, Peter Templeton, Kath Williams and Alex Wilson—and they came up on stage and stood...

In Industry 11.18.2014

Meet the first apartment and condo buildings to earn ENERGY STAR certification

Energy costs in multifamily properties have risen by 20 percent over the past decade. These rising costs are squeezing operating income for building owners and managers, and they’re making apartments and condos less affordable for residents. Here’s another staggering statistic: Current industry estimates show that multifamily properties can become 30 percent more efficient by 2020—and cost-effectively at that. Those reductions will not only save a lot of money (how’s $9...

In Industry 11.6.2014

Making the green choice when creating collateral

It’s a nasty habit we’re all trying to break. The paper habit, that is. We’re all looking to trim our consumption, both at home, and on the job. But in the marketing and communications world, sometimes it’s not that easy. We build websites and e-books, but sometimes the takeaway that makes the biggest impression is the one that comes printed on paper. USGBC has worked diligently to curb its use of paper, moving to digital distribution (like our web-based reference guide...

In Industry 10.30.2014

Sustaining Michelangelo’s frescoes with sustainable technology

The artistic brilliance of Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel frescoes are often said to take one's breath away. An instinctive act of reverence for time-tested talent—but, in reality, the simple act of breathing, exhaling carbon dioxide, by the Chapel’s six million annual visitors has been contaminating, and deteriorating, the frescoes. The problem became so severe that the Vatican considered closing the chapel to the public. Enter technology. Faced with the challenge of preserving a...

In Industry 10.23.2014

Happy Diwali, and what green building can learn from Gandhi

Happy Diwali, India (and world)! This Diwali, USGBC wants to celebrate the tremendous leadership demonstrated by India, now one of the top five largest markets in the world for LEED, in the areas of environmental sustainability and green building. India has enjoyed a period of exponential economic growth since 1991, with economic development routinely at or above 6% growth in GDP on a nearly annual basis. India, which has also become a global leader in the technology and IT sector, now has one...

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