Over the years, Greenbuild has become a unifying moment for our entire industry.
But this year is particularly special. In November, when we gather in Chicago on USGBC’s 25th anniversary, we will celebrate you—the remarkable people who share our mission. We will celebrate those who have been with us from the beginning, those who have joined along the way and, of course, those whose future is on the line.
There’s a lot to celebrate: More than seven billion square feet of LEED-certified space across the globe. A community of LEED professionals more than 200,000 strong. And a green building market that has transformed into a trillion-dollar global industry.
And this is only the beginning.
As we write the next chapter of our story—and move into the next generation of green building—the stakes have never been higher.
Luckily, our community has been preparing for the challenges ahead. I’ve seen the perseverance and fortitude of the entire USGBC community firsthand. Through designing and operating sustainable, healthy, environmentally sound buildings, citie, and communities, we are continuing to build a sustainable future for all.
This year’s Greenbuild theme—"Human x Nature"—encompasses that intersection of humanity and our environment, reminds us that green builders are making sustainable buildings and communities accessible to everyone, and in doing so, are lessening the impact on the natural environment and raising the standard of living for people all around the world.
We all have a personal connection with nature. In many ways, it forms the basis for everything we have done over the last generation. And this theme embraces the idea that even in challenging times, human beings can advance and improve their quality of life by adapting their behavior to the natural environment.
This year’s Greenbuild conference will kick off with our keynote speaker Amal Clooney, and will also include three summits: the Communities and Affordable Homes Summit, WaterBuild and the International Summit. Before the conference even begins we have a full line up of workshops—everything from LEED and LEED for Existing Buildings to TRUE Zero Waste, GRESB, SITES and WELL.
As always, the Expo Hall is packed with more than 500 companies featuring the latest and greatest in green building products and services. Accredited professionals can earn 15+ CE hours during the week and can participate in nearly 200 educational sessions. The Greenbuild Celebration promises to be a night to remember, with a live performance from seven-time Grammy winner and Chicago native Buddy Guy.
We’ll wrap up the week on Friday with our closing plenary speaker, the Mayor of San Juan, Carmen Yulin Cruz, whose perspective on how humans can and must adapt to nature is more timely and valuable than ever.
We know that the future of the human race is interlaced with the future of the planet, and the sustainable practices we celebrate and advance at Greenbuild remind us that our success as sustainability advocates, practitioners and professionals is more than a mission. It is a responsibility.
I can’t wait for you to see what’s in store this year at Greenbuild Chicago, and for us to inspire one another for the next quarter century.