A new report, released jointly by Global Buildings Performance Network (GBPN), the China Sustainable Energy Program (CSEP) and the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE), provides insight into the state of Chinese green building practices.
In China, an estimated 2 billion square meters of new buildings is added each year. Five major building policy aspects in China are reviewed in the report: building energy performance, building energy efficiency policies for new buildings and for existing buildings, application of renewable energy to buildings, and rural building energy use.
According to the report, China has developed a system of building energy codes, building energy efficiency labeling and evaluation, and green building labeling to improve building energy efficiency in new buildings. For existing buildings, the report introduced building energy efficiency policies and practices targeted at residential, governmental and large-scale public buildings, colleges and universities, including heating reform and energy-efficient retrofitting in Northern China, where there is a greater need for residential heating.
To download the report for free, visit: aceee.org/research-report/e129
As the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) reviews whether to continue using LEED as its green building standard of choice, more than 1,200 businesses and organizations signed a letter sent to GSA asking it to continue to use the LEED green building rating system to advance innovation in construction and save taxpayer dollars.
The letter commends GSA for its leadership in improving the energy and environmental performance of federal buildings, citing the recently released sustainability and energy "scorecard" from the White House's budget office. That study showed that federal government investments in energy efficiency over the last four years are expected to save as much as $18 billion in lifecycle energy costs.
Signatories of the letter include architects, engineers, builders, contractors, designers, planners and product manufacturers.
By Jessie Andrews, Communications Associate, U.S. Green Building Council
Sustainability is an ongoing process — one that permeates the operations and maintenance of a building just as much, if not more, than the construction. Facility management practices have always played a central role in the sustainability discussion, and are moving to the forefront now more than ever. With good reason: As of last December, LEED for Existing Buildings, Operations and Maintenance (LEED-EBOM) project square footage has surpassed that of new construction. It is clear that the future of the green movement is as dependent on sustainable operations as it is building practices.
The push to bring existing buildings up to snuff with modern sustainability practices challenges facility management personnel to redefine their roles within organizations and rethink their approach to operations. It is a very exciting industry shift and, most importantly, one that will allow the facility management industry to take building efficiency to the next level through cutting-edge technologies, collaboration with other operations professionals and innovation in finding new solutions to maximize efficiency. With these three approaches, facility managers will be well-equipped to make existing buildings even more efficient than new construction projects.
The U.S. Green Building Council will be celebrating the importance of sustainable building management this year at its annual event — and the world's largest conference and expo dedicated to green building — Greenbuild. This year, Greenbuild will take place Nov. 14-16 at the Moscone Center in San Francisco, with a focus on bringing technology and sustainability together in the global green environment. As a global leader in both technology and sustainability, San Francisco is the perfect place to drive this point home.
Of the 150 educational sessions lined up, many target the facility management field specifically. A panel discussion of green retrofits will present a new approach to increasing environmental performance without increased costs or payback periods. A session devoted to quality control practices will reveal how innovative, sustainable operations have transformed different segments of the office market. And for those interested in the future of green building, a panel of experts will map out what can be expected in future iterations of LEED and the impact it is expected to have on the building industry.
This year, for the first time ever, Greenbuild attendees will also have the opportunity to earn 15 LEED continuing education credits — fulfilling their credential maintenance for the year.
Facility management-related half-and-full-day tours will provide a real life look at some of the most exemplary green maintenance practices in use today. The Waterfront Revival tour will visit three of San Francisco's most impressive remodels, outlining how historic buildings were repurposed to modern marvels of sustainability and technology. Other facility management-oriented tours include the Green Historic Office Preservation tour, which shows how successful high performance renovations transformed four existing buildings into LEED-certified office spaces for major companies like Adobe.
One of the most exciting parts of Greenbuild each year is its expo. This year's three-story expo is the biggest to date and will house 1,000 exhibitors showcasing the most cutting-edge technological innovations and green products on the market, providing plenty of inspiration for the building operations sphere.
Sustainable facility management strategies that foster healthy, energy- and resource-efficient buildings are essential to the future of the green building movement. Moving forward, increased industry education, innovation and collaboration will be the vehicles for effective maintenance strategies. With more than 35,000 attendees expected, Greenbuild 2012 is a valuable opportunity for facilities management personnel to connect with other green building professionals for information, advice and solutions while exploring the growing role of technology and sustainability in the industry.
For more information about Greenbuild 2012 visit greenbuildexpo.org.
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