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Manager of Training and Development,
Facilities Engineering and Maintenance
University of Pittsburgh Medical Center
California Treasurer Bill Lockyer wants Governor Schwarzenegger and the state’s legislature to agree to add a $5 billion bond measure to the November 2008 ballot that would fund solar installations and energy efficiency upgrades for state buildings. Of that $5 billion, $3.5 billion would fund 450 megawatts of solar panels, $900 million would fund fuel cells, biofuels and other renewable technologies, and $600 million would be dedicated to retrofitting and retrocommissioning the state’s 206 million square feet of building space, Lockyer says.
There are multiple ways for a building to earn LEED certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. What version of LEED do you plan to use in the next year?
- LEED for New Construction (LEED-NC)
- LEED for Existing Buildings (LEED-EB)
- LEED Core and Shell (LEED-CS)
- LEED for Schools
- Not pursuing LEED certification
Doing research for an article years ago, I decided to put myself in someone else’s place. I moved around a city’s downtown area in a wheelchair to check out its accessibility. I wasn’t the first person to use this tactic to test a building, mall or city center, but I’m grateful to whoever did do it first because immediately after starting on my trip, I realized something people who use wheelchairs and other equipment to go anywhere had known for a long time. Elements of a building or city that barely register to most people — curbs, sidewalk cracks, doors — often are huge roadblocks to access.
You’ve probably heard about the Energy Star Label for Buildings and the LEED green building rating system. Now there could be a new credential for facility executives to aim for, one that shows the organization is prepared for emergencies.
Deep inside the bill to implement the remaining recommendations of the 9/11 commission is a measure that requires the Department of Homeland Security set up a program to certify businesses with emergency preparedness programs that meet a voluntary national standard. The bill was signed into law Aug. 3.
Although the program is voluntary, it could become a de facto standard for commercial real estate, reports the Real Estate Roundtable.
When facility executives think of energy efficiency initiatives, one thought that quickly rises to the surface is capital spending.
It’s understandable. From a BAS to fluorescent lighting to chillers, (to say nothing of computers and copiers) buildings are full of energy intensive equipment. Clearly, it’s easy to understand why facility executives quickly start thinking about capital improvements when it comes to energy efficiency.
But one consistent message I often hear is that there is plenty facility executives can (and should) do on the operations side first.
Interactive calculators from the Building Envelopes Program at the Oak Ridge National Laboratories allow users to enter values specific to users’ construction type and location to determine the energy efficiency of new or existing buildings.