Rick Fedrizzi

Ho Chi Minh City is a place where lessons of culture, history and our global economy are woven into its very fabric.

I’m here with UTC Building & Industrial Systems as a part of its fourth annual Distinguished Sustainability Lecture Series, and while I’m here to talk about LEED and USGBC to a mix of current and aspiring sustainability experts I’m amazed by how much this city and these people are teaching me about the interplay between sustainability and manufacturing.

Here, amid the thriving network of cities and countries that now make up the “world’s factory,” companies with manufacturing facilities are leading the charge for sustainable strategies that help them save money, mitigate the risks of climate change, drive new innovations in building practice and provide safe and healthy spaces for their employees.  

Last year the New York Times published an article, “Slowly Asia’s Factories Begin to Turn Green,” highlighting the incredible work of USGBC members and some of the outcomes from our LEED User Group: Industrial Facilities. In fact, since 2010 we’ve seen an astonishing 40% market growth in LEED-certified buildings dedicated to manufacturing.

You may be surprised to learn that the very first building to achieve LEED certification in Vietnam was a manufacturing facility owned by Colgate-Palmolive, part of their global portfolio of seven LEED-certified manufacturing facilities. Take a virtual tour of this facility, hosted by Vance Merolla, Director of Environmental Sustainability. 

The 30% water savings and various energy efficiency measures implemented at the facility contribute to Colgate-Palmolive’s global efforts to reduce energy use and carbon emissions, achieve zero deforestation, increase recycled content and maintain their status as an EPA Energy Star Partner of the Year. It gets better: contrary to the dark and dreary images that often come to mind when we think of manufacturing, this facility has natural daylight and individual occupant lighting controls too.

This building is just one part of a global effort to improve a major manufacturer’s environmental footprint, providing a better space for employees and leadership in the communities that make up our global economy.

Interested in learning more about the members of the LEED User Group: Industrial Facilities and their outstanding work on green manufacturing? The following companies are all leading the way: Assa Abloy,CH2M HILL, Colgate-Palmolive Company, GAF, Intel Corporation, Johnson Controls, Kohler Co., Procter & Gamble, Turner Construction, URS and United Technologies Building & Industrial Systems.