USGBC’s 2010 Federal Summit focuses on environment, economy

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Green Building Council’s (USGBC) seventh annual Federal Summit convened recently at the Ronald Reagan Building & Intl. Trade Center here for a two-day exchange of ideas on how to best meet the goals of increased sustainability in existing buildings and communities in order to significantly impact the environment and economy.

The USGBC 2010 Federal Summit provided a forum for discussing global climate change and energy dependence, and for keeping government leaders abreast of emergent green building initiatives, tools and technologies.

Officials from the federal sector, including Administrator Martha N. Johnson, U.S. General Services Administration, and Deputy Administrator Bob Perciasepe, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, discussed topics such as the current state of sustainability in the federal government and the progress federal agencies are making in improving their environmental, energy and economic performance. Updates on the LEED green building certification program and other USGBC activities were also included in the program.

“Considerable progress has been made on the path to sustainability in all parts of the United States with stimulus funds supporting the improvement of government buildings at the federal, state and local levels,” said Rick Fedrizzi, president, CEO and founding chair, USGBC. “By working together to change the way we design, build and operate buildings, implement best practices and utilize green building programs, we can dramatically improve the performance of our public building stock. The Federal Summit provides a unique opportunity to discuss critical issues and to highlight the leadership role of the federal government in mitigating climate change.”

The federal government, a longtime green building advocate, owns 221 LEED certified and 3,349 LEED registered projects, totaling over half a billion square feet. The GSA has also been active in the development of green leases to cover rental space used by federal employees in private sector buildings.