Last week, I attended the ABA Forum on Construction “Talking Green Blues” conference in New Orleans. The one presentation I was looking forward to the most was “When ‘Green’ Turns to ‘Red’ and ‘LEEDs’ to a Summons and Complaint,” which was moderated by Frank Musica. Musica is one of the foremost experts on green building claims. I wrote about Musica's presentation "Don't Let Green Design Cause Red Ink" in September, 2008 and refer to it often when discussing potential problems with green building.
One of Musica's opening remarks really caught my attention:
"We are about to see a second and much larger wave of green building claims."
Go back and read that quote again. This is serious. This is a big deal for the green building industry.
Why do Musica and I expect a surge in green building claims in the coming months and years? I highlighted many of the reasons in my "Green in the Stimulus" slideshow. The presentation highlights the opportunities, but also the risks, inherhent in green building stimulus projects: inexperienced government entities will have unrealistic expectations of green building projects. These same entities will also require guarantees of LEED certification or energy performance, or both. The contracts for these projects will be extremely important.
The wave of LEEDigation is coming. Can you swim? Can your attorney?