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U.S. Green Building Council: All Grown Up
I’ll be heading off to Boston next week for Greenbuild, as will 25,000+ others, or so I’ve heard. The huge crowd this conference will draw is testament to USGBC’s standing as the green building movement’s premier voice.
Its numbers are impressive: since 2000 USGBC’s membership has tripled to 17,676 member organizations representing millions of people in corporations, government agencies, non-profits and others throughout the building industry. Remember, only organizations – not individuals – can be members so its reach is widespread.
USGBC’s primary product, of course, is the LEED Green Building Rating System. Today, over 4.2 billion square feet of commercial building space is LEED registered or certified with $464 million of construction registering every business day. There are LEED projects in all 50 states and 69 countries and more than 62,000 LEED Accredited Professionals.
Wow! Old geezers like me remember when the entire organization fit into a medium size ballroom and the agenda for the membership meetings – precursors to Greenbuild – began with all attendees introducing themselves. That certainly isn’t happening in Boston next week.
Since its founding in 1993, USGBC has grown into a mature organization replete with six guiding principles woven into all aspects of the organization, over 2,000 LEED certified projects, an active education program including on-site trainings and webinars, and ever-evolving partnerships with diverse groups. Recently announced: a partnership with Senator Hillary Clinton to offer energy-saving solutions for school districts.
Once largely volunteer run, USGBC’s excellent staff, headed by CEO, president and founding chair Rick Fedrizzi, have enabled the organization to service its diversified membership, expand its programs and more fully participate in the mainstreaming of environmental consciousness that is (thankfully) evident everywhere. The 2009-2013 Strategic Plan summarizes the key initiatives. They demonstrate vibrancy, responsibility and ambition.
Watch this space next week for my reports from Greenbuild. There will be lots to tell.