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The Wingspread Principles were developed in June, at the first of four National Leadership Summits being conducted to review the nation's sustainable development goals in light of global warming and build a five-year action plan. USGBC President and CEO Rick Fedrizzi was among the 40 national leaders in energy and environment who met in Wisconsin to develop a roadmap for taking action on global warming. As a starting point, they asked themselves two questions:
-What is our nation’s responsibility as the largest producer of the greenhouse gas emissions that cause global warming?
-Can the many individuals and groups concerned about climate change be heard better if we begin to speak with one voice?
The 12 concise statements in the document are the answers the group developed. USGBC is engouraging members to add their names to the document.
USBC's action is one of several recent signs of leadership from the building industry. The American Institute of Architects (AIA), for example, has endorsed a goal to reduce the fossil energy consumption of new and renovated buildings (including operation and construction) by at least 50 percent by 2010. By 2035, the AIA says, all new and renovated buildings should be “carbon neutral,” requiring no fossil energy and emitting no greenhouse gases.
Since November 2005, Rick Fedrizzi has been part of a group of U.S. leaders that has planned four national conferences to determine how the United States can become more sustainable in a time of global warming. In addition to the June conference on energy and climate change, conferences will be held to propose action in natural resource stewardship (December 2006) and sustainable community development (June 2007), followed in October 2007 by the creation of a five-year action plan for the country.
The summits are being conducted by The Global Energy Center for Community Sustainability (GEC) in partnership with The Johnson Foundation.