Wednesday, September 11, 2013

USGBC Provides Snapshot of the Current Green Building Industry and Its Occupants

The U.S Green Building Council consists of environmentally conscious professionals who introduce healthier energy efficient buildings to the market. Many members of the USGBC organization help reduce waste and carbon emissions, increase energy efficiency and improve air quality, health and wellbeing. Rick Fedrizzi, President, CEO and founding chair of USGBC explains,
"Our forward-thinking community members rely on local USGBC chapters for support to carry out this work as USGBC itself looks to its member companies to champion the movement through the buildings they build and operate; the products they create and manufacture; and the policies they advocate that help advance this important work."
The green building market is estimated at $96-140 billion with 835 million square feet of construction in 2013, according to McGraw Hill Construction Outlook 2009. USGBC estimates that more than 4.3 million people are living and working in LEED certified buildings, with more than 6.2 million people experiencing a LEED-certified project each day. Interestingly, researchers found that workforce health and happiness to safer, greener, working environments and fewer hours commuting to traffic. Professionals have found that improved performance and workflow have improved greatly and building performance has benefited from reduced energy usage. Since 2011, The USGBC has been tracking the performance of LEED buildings that are reporting their energy and water data.

LEED has brought sustainability on the development of mainstream of building design and construction. In 2013, the number of green building professionals was eight million and 35% of all U.S construction jobs are green today and are helping the community.

green building industry statistics from USGBC

One of the most recent projects from USGBC was for Park Central 7 in Dallas, Texas in 2011. Tenants were interested and participative in the LEED for Existing Buildings: Operations and
Maintenance certification. Important steps in Central Park 7's green initiative were changes to pest control procedures that eliminated all use of chemicals and an annual energy savings of $20,800.

These green initiatives are important because they provide education and awareness about the health hazards of non-LEED certified buildings. More organizations every day are becoming green and demonstrating the importance of the USGBC's mission to provide environment-friendly practices. Because people understand the long term effects of pollution, asbestos, lead and other harmful contaminants, buildings who took the time and effort to become LEED certified are worth more on the market than non-certified buildings. In the future, most, if not all, construction jobs will become green and workers will become LEED certified. One of the goals of the USGBC is to introduce the green effect, universally, and provide education about the importance of sustaining a green environment for the future. The rate of LEED-certified buildings in the U.S was 44% in 2012 and is continually growing to a predicted rate of 55% in 2016. By then, more than half of the U.S will participate in the green movement.

For more information on USGBC's LEED credentials, and to learn how you can join the green building movement, visit www.greenedu.com/leed-certification.