21 V.A. Hospitals are currently using Green Globes to help improve environmental performance
WASHINGTON, D.C. (September 30, 2009) – Jane Rohde, AIA, FIIDA, ACHA, AAHID, testified on behalf of the Green Building Initiative (GBI) at a recent hearing titled “Energy Efficiency at the U.S. Department of Veterans’ Affairs ” held by the House Committee on Veterans Affairs. Ms. Rohde is an authorized Green Globes 3rd party assessor, and is overseeing the assessments of 21 Veterans Affairs hospitals currently undergoing the Green Globes Continual Improvement of Existing Buildings (CIEB) process.
Representatives from the Center for Maximum Potential Building Systems, U.S. Green Building Council, the Center for Environmental Innovation in Roofing, U.S. General Services Affairs, U.S. Department of Energy and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs also participated in the hearing, which took place on September 30, 2009.
The V.A. hospitals are utilizing Green Globes CIEB to help meet the federal requirements for sustainability and energy efficiency as outlined in the Guiding Principles. During this process, V.A. Energy Managers were asked to complete an online survey of their medical center and report their findings including monthly energy and water consumption from utility bills, information on transportation practices that minimize energy consumption and other data that describe policies related to containing emissions, promoting recycling and monitoring indoor environmental issues.
“It is clear that the VA hospitals that have been assessed are on a positive path for sustainable improvement,” said Rohde. “I am fortunate to be part of this groundbreaking initiative, assessing first-hand the creativity, the potential, and the amazing outcomes that are sure to manifest as a result of this ongoing evaluation and certification process.”
Green Globes CIEB allows users to create a baseline of their building’s performance, evaluate interventions, plan for improvements, and monitor success—all within a holistic framework that also addresses physical and human elements such as material use and indoor environment. A combined focus on energy use, building features and management practices helps to pinpoint where performance is lacking and what corrective action is required.
“Continual improvement is just that, continual, and it is important to realize that on-going efforts are what make a hospital sustainable,” said Rohde. “Tools and certification programs like Green Globes allow the VA staff to conduct periodic assessments that then empower them to be the drivers of initiatives for improvement that can be quantified over time.”
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.