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Who Is Responsible for Green Building Performance?

First, and most important, please note that this article is not meant to provide any legal advice. It does address the issue of certification responsibilities under LEED or any green building performance. While an owner may desire a new or existing building to meet LEED standards and hire an engineer … Read more »

Recent Surveys Show Greater Acceptance of Sustainability by Business

The first quarter of 2012 has come to an end, meaning the release of surveys and other studies of sustainability in 2011. The MIT Sloan Management Review Report was recently released, and according to their survey, corporate sustainability programs grew markedly in 2011. About 70 percent of nearly 3,000 executives … Read more »

USGBC To Revamp the LEED Program

The US Green Building Council (USGBC) is revamping the LEED rating system this year. LEED 2012 will focus on improving the rating system’s clarity (providing more precise technical criteria) and making the system more user-friendly. Some may consider these competing notions, so i’’s quite a lofty goal to meet. There … Read more »

Recent Trends in Sustainable Building

Sustainable building has had its ups and downs lately. Many building owners and professionals complain about the USGBC’s LEED standards, ranging from, “It’s too expensive, time-consuming, and difficult to get certification,” to, “It does not truly result in sustainability.” There has been talk about possible new competing standards or simpler … Read more »

Using Environmental Data for Business Value

It’s early in the calendar year, a time when many environmental professionals gather their 2011 environmental data to generate reports that your regulatory agencies require. How much fuel did your stationary combustion sources burn in the past year? How many times was a certain condition exceeded in the past quarter? … Read more »

Solar Costs Are Dropping. Is It in Your Future?

With all the bad press from the federal bailout of Solyndra, one fact was forgotten. Sales of Solyndra’s alternative solar cell design dropped, leading to its bankruptcy, because of a glut in the market of polysilicon, the semiconductor used in the most common type of solar panel. In fact, polysilicon’s … Read more »

Two Views of the Value of Sustainability

Sustainability is all the rage as many significantly-sized companies are evaluating it to maximize economic benefits and seeing how it can fit into company plans. We in the environmental community believe that sustainability programs almost always deliver a good return on investment (ROI) because of the long-term economic benefits of … Read more »

Effects of New NOx RACT Rules

Virtually all states that have nonattainment areas for ozone have passed a rule called nitrogen oxide (NOx) Reasonably Achievable Control Technology (RACT). With many regions not in attainment for ozone approaching 4 decades, several states have or are considering toughening this rule to reduce NOx emissions, a precursor for ozone. … Read more »

The New Federal Cross-State Air Pollution Rule

On July 6, 2011, the USEPA finalized a rule intended to reduce emissions from power plants of fine particulate matter and pollutants that are precursors to smog, indicated by ambient ozone. This new Cross-State Air Pollution Rule (CSAPR) will replace current Clean Air Interstate Rule (CAIR) on Jan. 1, 2012, … Read more »

9 Purely Business Reasons to “Green” Your Company

Monitoring and Evaluation Some companies are hesitant about becoming “green,” concerned about the costs or considering it an exotic, non-business issue. They think of this as actions to “save the Earth,” which is not their responsibility. However, sustainability is now recognized as a valid business concern. Savvy companies which have comprehensively … Read more »

Certifying and Rating Your Sustainability Successes

You are aware of the business arguments for establishing a sustainability or “green” program and are seriously considering or have begun such a program. It is therefore important to plan the proper metrics of your program in order to demonstrate success so that all stakeholders understand the benefits and achievements … Read more »

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