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Mike Gehrig
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-- Free Educational Programs to Help Builders and Developers Implement Green Building Practices and Techniques --

Portland, Ore. (February 19, 2008) — The Green Building Initiative (GBI), a not-for-profit education and marketing initiative dedicated to accelerating the adoption of green building practices, announced today that it will provide free online education sessions on topics related to green building.

Seminars will be available via the GBI’s web site (, which serves as a comprehensive green building resource for design and building professionals.

"We've positioned ourselves as an organization that architects, builders and others can turn to when they need resources, information and education related to green building," says Sharene Rekow, vice president of marketing and membership for the GBI. "These training sessions are another example of GBI's commitment to providing practical, user friendly tools to people who have the desire and power to improve the sustainability of the built environment—regardless of their level of experience."

The first seminars, planned for late February and early March, will teach design and construction professionals about the groundbreaking LCA tool, the ATHENA® EcoCalculator for Assemblies.

Developed by the Athena Institute in consultation with the University of Minnesota Center for Sustainable Building Research and Morrison Hershfield Consulting Engineers, the tool was originally commissioned by the GBI for incorporation into the Green Globes™ environmental assessment and rating system. However, recognizing its value as an indicator of global warming potential and other environmental impacts, GBI also supported the development of a generic version, the ATHENA® EcoCalculator for Assemblies, which is available free of charge from the Athena Web site (

After early March, the EcoCalculator seminar will also be available via the GBI Web site for access anytime.

Additional seminar topics, now in development, will include the "Liability of Building Green" and "How Do You Market Your Company or Product as Green?"—which will also teaching design and construction professionals how to improve the sustainability of their structures with the GBI's Green Globes™ system, which includes modules for New Construction and the Continual Improvement of Existing Buildings. The GBI is also developing a residential training program for home builders.

For more information on the available or upcoming GBI resources, visit

ABOUT THE GREEN BUILDING INITIATIVE:The mission of the Green Building Initiative is to accelerate the adoption of building practices that result in energy-efficient, healthier and environmentally sustainable buildings by promoting credible and practical green building approaches. A not-for-profit education initiative, the GBI is supported by a broad cross section of organizations and individuals with an interest in residential and commercial construction. For more information on the Green Building Initiative, please visit