Inspiration & Aspiration: Highlights at Greenbuild – Day 2 of the Conference

Posted on: November 20th, 2008 by Barbara Campagna

 

Revolutionary Green

The Prudential Tower and Back Bay, Boston: 74% of greenhouse gas emissions in Boston come from buildings.

The Prudential Tower and Back Bay, Boston: 74% of greenhouse gas emissions in Boston come from buildings.

For the past year I have been trying to figure out what the tagline for this year’s Greenbuild “We Are Revolutionary Green” meant. Today I found out. This year is the 15th anniversary of the U.S. Green Building Council and year eight of the Greenbuild Conference. David Gottfried (via film) and Rick Fedrizzi (in person), two of the three co-founders of USGBC, reflected on the “seismic shift in priorities” that the past 15 years represent – in our world culture as well as the organization. Each speaker in the opening plenary stressed how the green building movement is not really about buildings – it’s about people, people taking control of our world, our actions and yes, our buildings.

Boston's Mayor Thomas Menino performed his duty of welcoming the 10,000 (yes, you read that right, 10,000) people in the Hall. But then he spent the next five minutes talking about Boston’s leadership among U.S. Cities in sustainability and declared, “Green building is about more than policy, it’s about people.” In Boston, 74% of the greenhouse gas emissions come from buildings (that’s about 30% more than the national average!). Their green building zoning is helping to create a new green work force, with new skills for these new “green jobs.”

“We are changing people’s minds about what really matters”

Rick Fedrizzi (CEO & President, USGBC) presented the best speech I have ever seen him give, and one of the best I’ve seen anyone give recently. As one of my colleagues commented when I mentioned this, “He didn’t strike me as the type to give inspirational speeches.” Exactly, that’s what made it even more special. I’ll admit it, I was weeping silently when he finished his 20 minutes with “We are the people we have been waiting for.” The underlying theme throughout the past two days has been the monumental change in administration that we all voted into being on November 4th.

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The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Barbara Campagna

Barbara A. Campagna, FAIA, LEED AP BD+C was formerly the Graham Gund Architect of the National Trust in the Stewardship of Historic Sites office. She is currently a sustainability consultant to the National Trust and can be reached at bcampagna@bcampagna.com.

 

Update: The live-streaming of this presentation has concluded. Greenbuild will be providing on-demand video soon; in the meantime, you can read Mr. Moe's speech on our website.

Earlier this week, my colleague Patrice Frey wrote a post about the intense summit held recently at Pocantico in Tarrytown, NY "to discuss the future of historic preservation in light of global warming, and specifically the implications of climate change for preservation policy." In her post, Patrice mentioned that the president of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, Richard Moe, would be introducing the six principles that summarize the outcome of that meeting at this week's Greenbuild conference in Boston.

This speech, entitled Historic Preservation and Green Building: Finding Common Ground, will be streamed live online later this morning (November 20) from 8:00-9:30 a.m. EST on this page on the Greenbuild site. So, while you enjoy your morning coffee or check your email, tune in to hear about the important relationship between preservation and sustainability. After all, why just recycle cans and bottles, when you can also recycle buildings!

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Learn more about the National Trust for Historic Preservation's sustainability initiative.

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Sarah Heffern

Sarah Heffern

Sarah Heffern is the social media strategist for the National Trust’s Public Affairs team. While she embraces all things online and pixel-centric, she’s also a hard-core building hugger, having fallen for preservation in a fifth grade “Built Environment” class.

Green Building: The International Perspective

Posted on: November 19th, 2008 by National Trust for Historic Preservation 2 Comments

 

Downtown Boston from the South Boston waterfront. (Photo: Barbara Campagna)

Downtown Boston from the South Boston waterfront. (Photo: Barbara Campagna)

Ready, set, go... it wasn't hard to miss that Greenbuild is being held in Boston this week. Almost as soon as I got off the plane there were welcome signs - stats from the city of Boston and the Transit authority on what they are doing to be green - as well as invitations to visit booths in the exhibit hall. So it's pretty clear that the city is excited about hosting Greenbuild.

I opted to attend International Day, wondering what everyone else is doing. I have had this belief that everyone is light years ahead of us, since we, the US, are the largest consumers of natural resources, we live by using more - so how can everyone else lead happy and successful lives with using less? I think that instead of taking you through the day, session by session, it is best to sum it up at this point. Building professionals from around the world are here to learn from us! Yes, that's right, the US the largest consumer in the world. Why? Because the USGBC has created the most widely adopted ratings framework world-wide and it works.

Developers and building professionals from British Columbia, Brazil, Abu Dhabi, Germany, and China participated in a series of fireside chats, panels and discussions to share their lessons learned and discuss the futures of their cities and countries given the LEED metrics.

Deutsche Bank has been so impressed with the results of the renovation of their headquarters building in Frankfort that they are going to be applying LEED to all of the buildings in their portfolio, from second tier cities in India to other Euorpean cities. One wonders when they will require LEED metrics to be applied to their clients portfolios as a condition of lending?

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The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

National Trust for Historic Preservation

National Trust for Historic Preservation

The National Trust for Historic Preservation, a privately funded non-profit organization, works to save America's historic places.

Preservation Success Honored in Lawrence, Mass.

Posted on: November 19th, 2008 by National Trust for Historic Preservation

 

Third in our series of videos highlighting the winners of the 2008 National Preservation Awards.

Today, National Trust for Historic Preservation president, Richard Moe, visited the City of Lawrence and presented them with an Honorary National Preservation Honor Award. Lawrence's Washington Mills Building No. 1 received a National Preservation Honor Award from the National Trust for Historic Preservation during its 2008 National Preservation Conference in Tulsa, OK.

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

National Trust for Historic Preservation

National Trust for Historic Preservation

The National Trust for Historic Preservation, a privately funded non-profit organization, works to save America's historic places.

All Green Roads Lead To Boston This Week

Posted on: November 19th, 2008 by Barbara Campagna 1 Comment

 

The Convention Center and World Trade Center, South Boston Waterfront.

The Convention Center and World Trade Center, South Boston Waterfront.

The eighth annual conference of the U.S. Green Building Council -– Greenbuild –- has taken over Boston’s new Convention Center, bringing over 30,000 attendees to the South Boston waterfront. One of the most complicated things to do at this conference is to decide what to actually go to – during each time slot there are up 20 different sessions from which to choose. Tuesday was Member Forum and International Forum Day. The Conference proper began this morning with a keynote speech by Archbishop Desmond Tutu.

The USGBC Member Forum

The Member Forum Day is a tradition at Greenbuild. Employees of all member organizations are welcome to attend a plenary session and the USGBC business meeting free of charge. Last year, my first Greenbuild, I arrived too late to attend the Member Forum. This year’s plenary was first rate and got at the heart of the two key issues of our time –- the climate crisis and the economic crisis. The panel was moderated by Steve Curwood, executive producer and host of NPR’s “Living Earth” who asked a lot of challenging and insightful questions. The panel was composed of Ashok Gupta, air & energy program director and senior energy economist at the Natural Resources Defense Council; Mindy Lubber, president of Ceres (a coalition of investors and environmental leaders working to improve corporate environmental, social and governance practices) and Stockton Williams, senior vice president at Enterprise Community Partners.

Steve Curwood set the stage by asking the panelists to discuss how we impact climate change given the current debacle of the world economy. He rhetorically questioned whether we can pinpoint Hurricane Katrina as the bellwether event and harbinger of both climate change and the economic Armageddon. There is no doubt that the challenge is big, but to quote Ashok Gupta, “A crisis is a terrible thing to waste.” The session began with a four-minute video of President-elect Barack Obama (taped for the Governors’ conference last week) discussing his policies for climate change. Obama proclaimed that we need to build a green economy and we must be aggressive and relentless. We must reduce our carbon footprint by 20% prior to 2020 and 80% by 2050.

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The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Barbara Campagna

Barbara A. Campagna, FAIA, LEED AP BD+C was formerly the Graham Gund Architect of the National Trust in the Stewardship of Historic Sites office. She is currently a sustainability consultant to the National Trust and can be reached at bcampagna@bcampagna.com.