As LEED and green building practices shift from margin to mainstream, USGBC’s GreenBuild is coming of age and claiming new ground. We traveled to Toronto Canada, host city to the first GreenBuild ever outside the United States and experienced LEED at the international level. With growing influence, responsibility, and evolution of the green marketplace, United States Green Building Council is developing new programs and services to support international needs.
GreenBuild 2011 provided an opportunity to experience Canada’s approach to green building. CaGBC (Canada Green Building Council) explores new directions, including the mainstream of green, including changes in LEED delivery and certification internationally. Smart Growth BC focuses on sustainable communities and smart growth with the National Resources Defense Council, combining green building and community development.
Thomas Friedman, an internationally known author, reporter, columnist and GreenBuild 2011’s featured keynote speaker, discussed the five mega-problems today’s world is facing: energy and natural resource supply and demand, petrodictatorship, climate change, energy poverty and biodiversity loss. Friedman strongly believes we need to act collectively to sustain our values relating to the environment, relationships and finances.
John Picard, the closing plenary keynote speaker, spoke to increasing energy and water literacy, resiliency in design, data, data, data. the scale of transformation and “winning the bid to do what is right”. Picard, as he visualizes the future, discussed the opportunities to create “I Buildings” which Steve Jobs envisioned and planned for our future.
With over 800 exhibitors, the expo floor never fails to provide a place and opportunity for new innovations and technologies to be showcased, among the mature, market dominant products. Sustainability Matters and our aligned partners featured energy and water efficiency technologies at GreenBuild 2011 Expo, including AquaCell, CiraLight , and Phase Change Energy Solutions (receiving Top 10 innovative technology of GreenBuild 2011).
GreenBuild 2011 was a gathering of like-minded colleagues, incredible innovators, global leaders, electrifying visionaries, and fabulous friends who engage one another, share knowledge and experience having interrelated objectives of providing a sustainable future of our globe. The community that has developed, surrounding GreenBuild over the past ten years is undoubtedly leading the way to our sustainable future. The vibrant energy surrounded by education, technology and visionary foresight continues to take GreenBuild to new levels year after year as we continue to raise the bar and ask ourselves “What is Next?”