Contract - July 2009 - (Page 26)

green green building goes global As the international community embraces sustainability, a common goal has engendered an uncommon level of cooperation By Tim McEnery Over the last five years, there has been an expansive growth and interest in the U.S. market around green buildings and sustainable design principles. The United States Green Building Council (USGBC) has been at the forefront of this movement in the United States and is now setting its sights on expanding its mission into an embracing international marketplace. There are reasons to be optimistic about the international market’s acceptance of sustainable design principles into its built environment as we all work to reduce the impacts of buildings on the environment. According to the Energy Information Administration, buildings are one of the heaviest consumers of natural resources and account for a significant portion of the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions that affect climate change. In the United States, buildings account for 38 percent of all carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. Given these figures, it is clear buildings significantly contribute to the global climate change problem but they are also a central part to a solution. Moreover, the academic and professional arenas have responded with studies and analyses providing data around the benefits of greening the built environment to address the reduction of energy and water consumption, lower maintenance costs, higher occupant satisfaction, and lower GHG emissions. The LEED Green Building Rating System, developed by the USGBC, is an internationally recognized certification system that measures how well a building or community performs. LEED provides building owners and operators a concise framework for identifying and implementing practical and measurable green building design, construction, operations, and maintenance solutions. Today there are LEED projects in 103 countries. When looking at the total amount of LEED registered floor space, over 25 percent derives from the international community. This translates to 9 percent of all registered LEED projects. A large stakeholder, which is assisting in USGBC’s mission of market transformation, is the group of member organizations in the global marketplace. Currently, the USGBC is composed of more than 20,000 organizations from across the building industry. With such a large array of constituents, both domestic and international, collaboration and interaction is vital toward achieving greater penetration and market growth. Herman Miller in Chippenham, U.K., designed by Gensler, achieved LEED Gold Certification. Cundall Sydney Office, designed by Cundall, achieved LEED Platinum Certification. (Photo by Marlon Kobacker.) 26 contract july 2009

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Contract - July 2009

Contract - July 2009
Guest Editorial
Resources: Alpha Workshops
Green Building Goes Global
The Collaborative Workplace
All For Fun
Group Practice
Caring Collaborator
Life is a Circus
Cohesive Spaces in Public Places
On the Landscape
Castles in the Sand
Face to Face
Heart and Soul
Project Management
Dream Team
Ad Index

Contract - July 2009