Tag Archives: green building law

Eat, Pray, Greenbuild?

I am often asked, “how can I expand my green building business?” My answer is simple and the same response I have offered for years, attend the Greenbuild International Conference and Expo. This year Greenbuild is in Boston from November 8 – 10. I do not claim any particular business marketing prowess. Nor can I … Continue Reading

FTC Settles Charges Over Deceptive Zero VOC Claims

Paint Can Label from Exhibit B in FTC Complaint
Four paint companies have agreed to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that they deceptively promoted products as containing zero volatile organic compounds (VOCs) or as emission free, including during and immediately after application. Some promotions also made explicit safety claims. Specifically, the first FTC complaint alleges, In connection with the advertising, promotion, offering for sale, … Continue Reading

Mold can be Arrested in the Marketplace

Extensive mold contamination on ceiling and wall
Concern about exposure to indoor mold has been increasing as the public becomes sensitive to issues of building occupant health and wellbeing. Mold problems in buildings have in large measure been exacerbated by changes in building codes and construction practices that began in the 1970s. In the quest to be more energy efficient, buildings are … Continue Reading

You Need a Green Building Consultant (Who Speaks for the Trees)

The Lorax Partnerships Team
We are often asked “what is the best way to assure success in a green building project?” Whether that query is from a Fortune 1000 businesses or an architect, the answer is the same, have the owner engage an experienced green building consultant as early as possible in the project. Which often leads to a … Continue Reading

Retailers Pay Millions for Hazardous Waste Violations

Retailers across the nation are buttressing their trash disposal practices after Dollar General Stores and Big Lots Stores paid Millions of dollars to settle civil suits for environmental violations for the unlawful disposal of hazardous waste, including customer returned merchandise and batteries. Most businesses should have a solid waste management plan to provide staff with … Continue Reading

Solar Powered Advertisement is Deceptive

Billboard in Italian Train Station
A business installs photo voltaic panels on its roof to generate power, and advertises that it is “solar powered.”  The business, however, sells the Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) that are generated by the solar power. Even if the business is near net zero for electricity generated by the solar panels, according to guidance from the … Continue Reading

Nevada Stops Subsidizing Net Metering

Photovoltaic panels provide electricity at yak herder's house in Bhutan
In the final days of 2015, Nevada became the front line in the nationwide debate over energy policy when the Public Utilities Commission of Nevada cut rates for net metering impacting homeowners with rooftop photovoltaic panels. The 113 page draft order found that under existing net metering rates other ratepayers were subsidizing net metering customers … Continue Reading

LEED Dynamic Plaque Coming to a Building Near You

Mahesh Ramanujam and Scot Horst discuss the LEED Dynamic Plaque at Greenbuild
With LEED Dynamic Plaques starting to appear in building lobbies it is a good time to understand this new U.S. Green Building Council platform. It is a whole lot more than a 7 lb. display unit. While we are aware of six LEED Dynamic Plaque certifications, according to the USGBC, the Dexter Horton Building in … Continue Reading

GRESB is Huge with $2.3 Trillion in Real Estate so Follow the Money

GRESB at Greenbuild 2015
Representing a huge share of the market capitalization of real estate across the globe, this year, 707 real estate companies and funds, with over 61,000 properties, having an aggregate value of $2.3 Trillion reported their environmental, social and governance information to Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark (GRESB). To appreciate the order of magnitude of those … Continue Reading

Lawsuit over First LEED Platinum Building is Over

Image David Harp/ Chesapeake Bay Foundation
With an Order Of Judgment, in favor of Permapost Products Company against Weyerhaeuser Company filed on November 17, 2015, resolving the final third party claims, the more than 15 year old disputes and differences over the construction of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation’s Philip Merrill Environmental Center, in Annapolis, Maryland, are over. There is much to … Continue Reading

Montgomery County to Abandon LEED Mandating IgCC for All Building

Montgomery County, Maryland has proposed adopting the International Green Construction Code 2012. At first blush this might sound like a good thing, until one considers that Montgomery County has long had mandatory green building laws for public and private construction, and the County today also offers significant incentives for green building. Many hundreds of LEED … Continue Reading

Utility Incentives Tied to LEED are Growing Geometrically

Last week Louisville Gas and Electric Company and Kentucky Utilities Company announced rebates from $2,000 to $10,000 tied to achieving certain LEED credits. Electric utility based incentives that support energy efficiency, including LEED certification, are increasing in number across the U.S. at all but geometric rates, while at the same time new government incentives have … Continue Reading

You Should Comment on the Revised Green Globes Standard

Last Friday was the beginning of the public comment period on the Green Building Initiative’s revision to its ANSI/GBI 01-2010: Green Building Assessment Protocol for Commercial Buildings that forms the basis for the current version of Green Globes for New Construction. Nearly 1000 buildings are Green Globes certified in the U.S. today. The revised Standard … Continue Reading

Climate Change Disclosures by Public Companies

In recent weeks this law firm has received more inquiries than at any time in recent years about the Securities and Exchange Commission’s disclosure requirements for public companies as they apply to climate change matters. Possibly the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed rule for emission reductions for existing power plants triggered this heightened level of interest … Continue Reading

Litigation over First LEED Platinum Building Comes to an End

It should give design professionals pause, now more than ever, that specifying new or untried materials and products (that are often the keystone of sustainable building) comes with unique risks; and in this case PolyClear 2000 was specified even before the emerging era of expanded liability arising from environmental product declarations and health product declarations.… Continue Reading

IgCC will now be Powered by ASHRAE 189.1

Last Friday, the International Code Council and ASHRAE announced that the new version of the International Green Construction Code (IgCC), .. scheduled to be released in 2018, .. will be powered by" ASHRAE Standard 189.1. .. Much of the early reaction has been nonplussed given that, today, there are only a handful of IgCC green buildings.… Continue Reading
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