IMPACT 2017: Local leaders, global gain (USGBC Minnesota) | U.S. Green Building Council
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Green building professionals convened at the IMPACT Conference to talk about sustainability at a local and global level.

On May 3, about 300 green building professionals and sustainability experts from the Midwest, joined USGBC Minnesota at the Saint Paul RiverCentre for the sixth annual IMPACT Conference: Local Leaders, Global Gain.

The conference was opened by the president and CEO of USGBC and GBCI, Mahesh Ramanujam. His presentation made poignant and inspiring connections between local and global scales while always keeping a focus on health and wellness. As one of our attendees said of Ramanujam's presentation, "I loved the focus on healthy buildings for all—especially the most vulnerable."

The IMPACT Conference and Program Committees worked hard to solidify a great speaker lineup, filled with thought-provoking speeches and expert panels and highlighting the great work of sustainability professionals across the region. Three tracks of programming provided relevant information for professionals throughout the industry. Whether you wished to hear about renewable energy financing, neighborhood scale sustainable development or the WELL Building Standard, IMPACT had you covered.

The exhibit hall was full of activity throughout the day. For the first time, IMPACT included Conversation Corners, where attendees and exhibitors could gather to network and discuss critical issues in sustainability and the built environment. Over 30 organizations exhibited in the RiverCentre’s hall, connecting professionals to useful products and services.

IMPACT quite literally practiced what it preached, as it was also run with sustainability in mind. Composting was provided, and the overall recycling rate was 91.4 percent. One hundred percent of the electricity used was offset by wind power, thanks to Xcel Energy’s WindSource® program.

The conference concluded with a keynote speech from the inspiring polar explorer and educator Will Steger. As an eyewitness to climate change effects, Steger shared stories about his explorations in the arctic over the past 30 years. His presentation was a reminder to all attendees about the critical role they play in improving efficiency in the built environment and mitigating the effects of climate change.

It is truly amazing what can happen when Minnesota leaders come together to share ideas and best practices for creating a greener, healthier and better future. Representatives from corporations, architecture firms and nonprofits alike shared their sustainability stories during an inspiring day! Attendees came away from the day understanding how local leaders like themselves are at the forefront of global gains in sustainability. 

See more photos from the conference.

If you would like to volunteer for the IMPACT 2018 Planning Committee, fill out our sign-up form and indicate you would like to help with IMPACT. 

Volunteer for IMPACT 2018

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