Earlier this month, USGBC launched its first of seven 2012 advocacy campaigns initiatives. The aim of the kick-off Leadership with LEED campaign is to grow green building and expand the use of LEED.
Shouldn't all government buildings, funded with taxpayer money, be built or retrofitted to a higher standard? Aren't buildings that are less costly to operate, longer lasting, and beneficial to the communities in which they're located a priority?
We sure think so, and we believe the best tool for the job is LEED. While building green helps advance the conversation, LEED is the tool understood by the market place and the building industry. That is why Leadership with LEED is the vanguard campaign of USGBC's 2012 advocacy agenda. With the simple purpose of making green buildings the market norm, the campaign was unveiled with a clear set of campaign priorities, specific policy proposals and legislative asks.
Through this campaign, USGBC advocates will receive strategic resources, materials and support to advance the conversation about LEED in city halls, state houses, and with federal representatives. Government plays a tremendous role in encouraging leadership, by creating incentives for private sector development, implementing speedier zoning regulations, or committing to LEED in public buildings.
Many cities, states and agencies in the federal government already realize the benefits of LEED-certified buildings: Currently, 34 states and over 400 municipal governments have embraced the benefits of building green. While this is no doubt impressive, there is still work to do. Decision makers across the country, at every level, need to be educated and asked to be a leader with LEED by advancing green building policies that work with their specific locality.
Look for more information on the USGBC blog about current and forthcoming campaigns, covering everything from green schools to affordable housing - and join in the effort to advance green building in your area today. Contact one of USGBC's 79 local chapters across the country to get involved, or contact me to get updates about the issues and campaigns we will be working on in 2012.