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In Industry 04.14.2015

Green building expertise

Green building requires new skills and new knowledge, as well as new attitudes and new mindsets. In a linear and hierarchical practice, each participant does his or her part and passes the job on to the next in line. There is little interaction, and people are compartmentalized by discipline or profession. By contrast, the green building process is interdisciplinary, iterative, and collaborative. Teamwork and critical thinking are valued. Everyone needs to learn to ask the right questions and...

In Industry 04.9.2015

Top 10 states project profile: Xcel Energy Center

2014’s Top 10 States have shown tremendous leadership in the green building movement by certifying 1,662 commercial and institutional projects representing 251.7 million square feet of real estate. These buildings will have a tremendous social impact over the coming years by providing healthy and environmentally sustainable spaces to produce new breakthroughs in many different fields of science, medicine, education, business, the fine arts and environmental and social justice. This...

In Industry 04.2.2015

What is WELL?

The WELL Building Standard® is a performance-based system for measuring, certifying, and monitoring features of the built environment that impact human health and wellbeing, through air, water, nourishment, light, fitness, comfort, and mind. WELL is managed and administered by the International WELL Building Institute (IWBI), a public benefit corporation whose mission is to improve human health and wellbeing through the built environment. WELL is grounded in a body of medical research...

In Industry 03.27.2015

Health and wellness in green buildings and communities in China

This week the Green Building Certification Institute (GBCI) and the International WELL Building Institute (IWBI) formally introduced the WELL Building Standard in China. It comes at a time when the Chinese people are faced with an increased environmental awareness and they are looking for solutions to improve their quality of life. WELL, which complements green building rating programs such as LEED, Three Star and BREEAM, is a system that focuses on human health and wellbeing in...

In Industry 04.14.2015

Countering the six myths-conceptions of sustainable design

I read with admiration Lance Hosey’s recent blog on the Six Myths of Sustainable Design. He got ‘em, and nearly all of them from what I’ve experienced. They frustrate me often. I am a solutions person, seeking to figure out not only what’s stopping us, but how to accept it in order to work with the limitations realistically and grow through or around the problem. After reading the Six Myths blog, I was compelled to compile my thoughts on how to begin to dispel these...

In Industry 04.7.2015

Making the right kind of building more profitable: A LEED-centered conversation about...

Amid the throng of smart suits representing the majority of the institutional real estate investor community, a group recently gathered for lunch to discuss what is becoming known as the proxy for building performance and savvy investment: LEED. The professionals in the room represent portfolios managed by leading investment firms who own properties from New York to California, Boston to San Antonio. These investment pros make up the PREA Green Building and Sustainability...

In Industry 04.1.2015

Going beyond green with green buildings

Initially, green buildings were intended to reduce damage to the environment and human health caused by creating and maintaining buildings and neighborhoods. As the concept of sustainability was applied to the built environment, it has become clear that doing less damage is not enough.  Leaders in the field now speak about buildings and communities that are regenerative, meaning that these sustainable environments evolve with living systems and contribute to the long-term renewal of...

In Industry 03.26.2015

Attend the upcoming event: Securing America’s Energy Future

You're invited to join leaders from the energy, defense and technology sectors to discuss and debate innovative solutions for securing the country’s energy resources at Securing America's Energy Future, hosted by the Washington Post. This live event will explore threats to national security, including cyber attacks, as well as efforts to mitigate the effects of natural disasters on the energy ecosystem. Learn more about the event. April 2, 2015, 8:30 – 10:30 amCharlie Palmer...

In Industry 04.10.2015

Five megatrends that will unleash business value in the circular economy

Leading companies like USGBC members Veolia, Philips and Cisco are shifting from the traditional linear “take, make, dispose” business model to a more regenerative circular economy framework. This transformation employs a systems level approach and intentional strategy to design waste out of the system and to manage materials for longer circulation and greater re-usability. The goal is to generate more value and economic opportunity with less material and energy consumption. Value...

In Industry 04.3.2015

Sustainability discussions all around in preparation for COP21

Paris is hosting the next U.N. Conference of Parties (COP) climate talks in December, and the government, companies, NGOs and universities are all preparing with great enthusiasm. The Mayor of Paris has committed to welcoming some 40,000 guests and helping to assure good outcomes, and everyone has stressed practical outcomes and solutions that all participants can agree upon. The U.S. Embassy in Paris has also been very active in the process. I was honored to be invited to participate in...

In Industry 03.27.2015

Regional trade shows bring a world of knowledge into one’s own backyard

It’s almost time for DesignColumbus, Central Ohio’s annual educational event and expo. The DesignColumbus story is similar to that of many trade shows across the U.S. Hosted by the USGBC-Central Ohio Chapter (USGBC-COH) and the Construction Specifications Institute Columbus Chapter, DesignColumbus continues to grow. Here the DesignColumbus planning committee talks to Doug Widener, Director, Community Advancement at the USGBC, about the regional trade show trend. Regional trade shows...

In Industry 03.25.2015

Green building costs and savings

At first glance, the additional work and alternative materials needed to build green may seem like a burdensome cost, but closer attention reveals this perception to be misleading. If sustainability is viewed as an expensive add-on to a building, we would mistake efforts to reduce energy costs or improve indoor environmental quality as comparable to specifying a better grade of countertop or a more impressive front door. Under this approach, any improvement beyond a minimally code-compliant...

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