Green Building Initiative Addresses U.S. Chamber of Commerce During Emerging Technologies Committee Meeting
Washington, D.C. (March 20, 2008) – Today Erin Shaffer, vice president of federal outreach for the Green Building Initiative (GBI), provided information to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce during its Emerging Technologies Committee Meeting about the GBI and recent innovations the non-profit has fostered to help combat climate change.
Shaffer joined industry representatives from the United Technologies Corporation – World Business Council on Sustainable Development project, the Alliance to Save Energy – Commercial Buildings Initiative, and the U.S. Green Building Council during a panel session on energy efficiency in buildings and, specifically, the role/effect of business and non-governmental organization activities.
While speaking to the Chamber committee, Shaffer emphasized the importance of life cycle assessment (LCA) to green building, because it allows the impartial comparison of materials, assemblies and even whole buildings, from cradle to grave, based on quantifiable measures of environmental impact. She discussed a new tool commissioned by the GBI, the ATHENA® EcoCalculator for Assemblies, which provides instant LCA results for hundreds of common building assemblies and allows mainstream design professionals to evaluate their designs based on indicators such as global warming potential. She also stressed that, while green design is vitally important, it is only part of the equation and must be paired with effective building operation and maintenance to achieve the desired results. To reinforce this link, she said, the GBI recently launched a new module of its Green Globes™ environmental assessment and rating system, Green Globes for Continual Improvement of Existing Buildings.
“With 120 million buildings expected to be operational in the U.S. by 2010, building owners and facility managers are on the front line of green building,” said Shaffer. “However, this challenge is now less daunting thanks to practical online tools such as the ATHENA® EcoCalculator for Assemblies and the new Green Globes for Continual Improvement of Existing Buildings module.”
The panel was part of a day-long Chamber event focused on green building, which included a keynote speech by David McIntosh, counsel/legislative assistant for Senator Joseph Lieberman (D-Connecticut), in addition to two other panel discussions on the regulation and legislation of green buildings.
To view Shaffer’s panel discussion and presentation, please click here
For more information about the Green Globes environmental assessment and rating system, or the GBI, visit www.thegbi.org.
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 www.thegbi.org.