EDC July 2012 : Page 30

The LEED Guide BY JEREMY SIGMON JEREMY SIGMON IS THE DIRECTOR OF TECHNICAL POLICY FOR U.S. GREEN BUILDING COUNCIL. HE HAS WORKED STRATEGICALLY ON GREEN BUILDING CODE DEVELOPMENT, ADOPTION AND IMPLEMENTATION IN LOCAL, STATE AND NATIONAL FORUMS. Build Better Codes USGBC DEEPENS MARKET TRANSFORMATION EFFORTS THROUGH ADVOCACY CAMPAIGNS. The nearly 10 billion square feet of commercial real estate that is participating in the suite of LEED programs is 20 times greater than the commercial real estate on Manhattan Island. This is a truly impressive feat for a program that is only 12 years young. Market forces, of course, have been the primary driver of the uptake of LEED in the mar-ketplace, but the government, too, has played an important role — and with good reason. Like the private sector, govern-ments continue to demonstrate an interest in reaping the many benefits that green buildings provide and in facilitating broader uptake of greener building prac-tices so that these benefits may be shared by all. Farther along in its tenure, building energy efficiency has been translated from concept to practice, practice to expectation, and expectation to law over the last few decades. Within only the last few years, however, a shift has swept the nation — at least in part due to the success of a fast growing community of green building projects and profes-sionals. A jurisdiction without a building energy code is now the exception to the norm. If the building code defines today’s minimum expectations for 30 edc july .2012 a building, then USGBC’s mission of a market transformed demands a more holistic and comprehen-sive set of expectations. USGBC has been engaged on this front for several years, and 2012 is the most important year yet. One of USGBC’s seven active advocacy campaigns is calling on green building profession-als to engage in the greening of state and local building codes. And while many communities are still struggling to effectively implement minimum standards for energy efficiency in buildings, that doesn’t stop most from plan-ning ahead for what’s next. By now, you’ve heard of the International Green Construction Code (IgCC) and ASHRAE Stan-dard 189.1 (which is offered as an alternate path to compliance with the code). The code offers a previously unimaginable frame-work of green building concepts written in code language so that communities may choose to begin aligning the minimum expecta-tions of their building codes with the minimum expectations of the 21st century real estate market. The IgCC offers these jurisdic-tions a broader scope for defining and protecting “health, safety and welfare” — a necessary transition if truly sustainable buildings and communities are in our sights. USGBC is committed to turning that vision into a reality, and through future versions of LEED, will continue to give the market a ceiling to reach for while these codes also raise the floor. The IgCC’s role as a new regu-latory minimum is both distinct and complementary to LEED’s engagement of market leaders. These “push” and “pull” forces are far more effective when working in parallel — market uptake of LEED provides oppor-tunity for code adoption, which then serves as a springboard for new green building aspirations, creating space for future growth in the codes. Beyond the technical content, an important industry coalition has come together in support of this new regulatory paradigm. Six leading building industry organi-zations, including the American Institute of Architects (AIA), ASTM, ASHRAE, Illuminating Engineering Society (IES), In-ternational Codes Council (ICC) and USGBC, have joined hands in this effort, offering a promising horizon of coordination and plan-ning that has vast potential to further facilitate the mainstream-ing of green building practice. Before even earning offi-cial status as a member of the International Family of Codes, governments began endorsing the regulatory language the code was poised to deliver. Earning that designation in March 2012, states and cities across the country are now opening the IgCC in search of ways to adopt code language that suits their community’s needs. The road ahead has been charted by a few brave jurisdic-tions, but it certainly is not yet well trodden. There’s a lot of work to be done before green be-comes code in most jurisdictions, and that’s where green building professionals are needed to coach the process along. If you have a hard time get-ting excited about codes and standards, you certainly are in good company. Indeed, there’s an entire universe of public policy efforts that our governments can engage in to create the right conditions for productive, low-impact growth of the green building sector. A subset of that universe is included in USGBC’s seven advocacy campaigns — six of which steer clear of the humdrum world of codes. Each of the advocacy campaigns is designed to apply pressure in important areas intended to bring green building further into the mainstream. We hope you’ll consider joining us as we work with federal, state and local governments to usher in a greener, more sustainable and economically prosperous nation. Find out more at: www.usgbc.org/ campaigns. edc

Build Better Codes

Jeremy Sigmon

USGBC DEEPENS MARKET TRANSFORMATION EFFORTS THROUGH ADVOCACY CAMPAIGNS.<br /> <br /> The nearly 10 billion square feet of commercial real estate that is participating in the suite of LEED programs is 20 times greater than the commercial real estate on Manhattan Island.This is a truly impressive feat for a program that is only 12 years young. Market forces, of course, have been the primary driver of the uptake of LEED in the marketplace, but the government, too, has played an important role — and with good reason.<br /> <br /> Like the private sector, governments continue to demonstrate an interest in reaping the many benefits that green buildings provide and in facilitating broader uptake of greener building practices so that these benefits may be shared by all.<br /> <br /> Farther along in its tenure, building energy efficiency has been translated from concept to practice, practice to expectation, and expectation to law over the last few decades. Within only the last few years, however, a shift has swept the nation — at least in part due to the success of a fast growing community of green building projects and professionals.A jurisdiction without a building energy code is now the exception to the norm.<br /> <br /> If the building code defines today’s minimum expectations for A building, then USGBC’s mission of a market transformed demands a more holistic and comprehensive set of expectations. USGBC has been engaged on this front for several years, and 2012 is the most important year yet.<br /> <br /> One of USGBC’s seven active advocacy campaigns is calling on green building professionals to engage in the greening of state and local building codes.<br /> And while many communities are still struggling to effectively implement minimum standards for energy efficiency in buildings, that doesn’t stop most from planning ahead for what’s next.<br /> <br /> By now, you’ve heard of the International Green Construction Code (IgCC) and ASHRAE Standard 189. 1 (which is offered as an alternate path to compliance with the code). The code offers a previously unimaginable framework of green building concepts written in code language so that communities may choose to begin aligning the minimum expectations of their building codes with the minimum expectations of the 21st century real estate market.<br /> <br /> The IgCC offers these jurisdictions a broader scope for defining and protecting “health, safety and welfare” — a necessary transition if truly sustainable buildings and communities are in our sights.<br /> <br /> USGBC is committed to turning that vision into a reality, and through future versions of LEED, will continue to give the market a ceiling to reach for while these codes also raise the floor.<br /> <br /> The IgCC’s role as a new regulatory minimum is both distinct and complementary to LEED’s engagement of market leaders.These “push” and “pull” forces are far more effective when working in parallel — market uptake of LEED provides opportunity for code adoption, which then serves as a springboard for new green building aspirations, creating space for future growth in the codes.<br /> <br /> Beyond the technical content, an important industry coalition has come together in support of this new regulatory paradigm. Six leading building industry organizations, including the American Institute of Architects (AIA), ASTM, ASHRAE, Illuminating Engineering Society (IES), International Codes Council (ICC) and USGBC, have joined hands in this effort, offering a promising horizon of coordination and planning that has vast potential to further facilitate the mainstreaming of green building practice.<br /> <br /> Before even earning official status as a member of the International Family of Codes, Governments began endorsing the regulatory language the code was poised to deliver. Earning that designation in March 2012, states and cities across the country are now opening the IgCC in search of ways to adopt code language that suits their community’s needs. The road ahead has been charted by a few brave jurisdictions, but it certainly is not yet well trodden. There’s a lot of work to be done before green becomes code in most jurisdictions, and that’s where green building professionals are needed to coach the process along.<br /> <br /> If you have a hard time getting excited about codes and standards, you certainly are in good company. Indeed, there’s an entire universe of public policy efforts that our governments can engage in to create the right conditions for productive, low-impact growth of the green building sector. A subset of that universe is included in USGBC’s seven advocacy campaigns — six of which steer clear of the humdrum world of codes. Each of the advocacy campaigns is designed to apply pressure in important areas intended to bring green building further into the mainstream.<br /> <br /> We hope you’ll consider joining us as we work with federal, state and local governments to usher in a greener, more sustainable and economically prosperous nation.Find out more at: www.usgbc.org/ campaigns.<br /> <br /> JEREMY SIGMON IS THE DIRECTOR OF TECHNICAL POLICY FOR U.S. GREEN BUILDING COUNCIL. HE HAS WORKED STRATEGICALLY ON GREEN BUILDING CODE DEVELOPMENT, ADOPTION AND IMPLEMENTATION IN LOCAL, STATE AND NATIONAL FORUMS.

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