Tag Archives: USGBC

3 Reasons Why Your Green Building Regulation is a Problem

On Wednesday, I posited that codifying the LEED rating system, or any other third party green building rating system, is not a viable option for an entire state.   Why?  Here are three primary considerations:   1.  There are troubling antitrust issues associated with the LEED rating system.  These antitrust issues are significantly exacerbated by the … Continue Reading

Green Building Groups Oppose Green Building Regulations

These are strange times for the green building industry.  Last week, California prepared to vote on new green building codes that would improve energy efficiency, water use and waste reduction in the construction industry.  Normally you would anticipate that environmental groups and green builders would applaud these measures, right? Not quite.   "[P]arts of the state’s … Continue Reading

Green Building Regulations To Face Increased Scrutiny

A coalition of forest product companies ("the Coalition") has filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) regarding, in part, the United States Green Building Council’s preference for Federal Stewardship Council-certified (FSC) wood products. The Coalition has asked the FTC Bureau of Competition to provide guidance to the USGBC and other rating systems regarding the … Continue Reading

USGBC Accused of Anti-competitive Practices

We may be settling into 2010, but one unresolved legal development in 2009 could have a broad impact on the future of the green building industry. On October 20, 2009, the Coalition for Fair Forest Certification ("the Coalition") filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (pdf), alleging anti-competitive behavior by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) … Continue Reading

The Most Important Green Building Legal Story of the Year

[Today we are highlighting the what is, in my opinion, the most important green building legal story of 2009.  With the launch of LEED v. 3.0, the United States Green Building Council (USGBC) announced it would revoke certification of projects that failed to meet minimum requirements.  The possibility of LEED de-certification creates new liability issues … Continue Reading

Cities Will Soon Regulate Energy Use

The future of green building regulations usually starts in big cities. Cities like San Francisco, Washington, D.C. and New York City were some of the first to incorporate green building certification into regulations and building codes. The next frontier in green building regulations will be energy performance and New York City seems to be at … Continue Reading

How Far Should the GSA Go With Green Building Certification?

If you have been reading Green Building Law Update for any length of time, you have read about the $4.5 billion that was given to the General Services Administration through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.  The GSA has announced plans to use the $4.5 billion to create high performance, green government buildings.    The … Continue Reading

Green Building Issues I Am Thinking About

Tomorrow I will be in Nashville, Tennessee to talk to the Middle Tennessee Chapter of the United States Green Building Council (USGBC) about green building law.  It is great news that the green building industry and the people who are involved in green building projects on a daily basis are so interested in green building … Continue Reading

Happy Labor Day

I hope everyone is having a great Labor Day.  No new post today.  Instead, I would suggest you read or re-read the New York Times article about LEED and energy performance.  The article is one of my most important to come out on green building in awhile.  As I said on Friday, the most interesting … Continue Reading

The Future of LEED: Re-certification

I found a YouTube video of a green roof being set on fire that I planned to post today.  You know another topic would have to be very important to pre-empt a green roof fire video.  Such a topic has revealed itself.  On Wednesday, we started talking about the New York Times LEED energy performance … Continue Reading

New York Times, USGBC Address LEED Performance Gap

You may have recently read the New York Times article about the gap between LEED building designs and actual energy performance.  If not, I would recommend reading the article.  You may have also noticed a reference to "construction lawyers":  "Already, some construction lawyers have said that owners might face additional risk of lawsuits if buildings … Continue Reading

Real Life Example of the Energy Performance Gap

[Sometimes I get great emails from readers and we discuss a green building topic or blog post.  Then I sit on the topic for a while, waiting for the right time to share with the Green Building Law Update readers.  Now seems like the right time to share an email I received from a reader. … Continue Reading

Could LEED NC and LEED EBOM Join Forces?

With the recent announcement that LEED certified projects will have to report energy performance data, the USGBC has signaled its intent to take on under performing green buildings.  LEED 2009 requires the reporting of energy performance data, but does not include actual energy performance requirements.  I have no doubt that the USGBC will require some … Continue Reading

This Post is Really Important and Is Not for the Faint of Heart

Disclaimer:  If you are sensitive to or frightened by new risks and liabilities in the green building industry, please skip this post. On Monday, I highlighted the USGBC’s decision to create requirements to ensure a building’s performance matches modeled energy savings.  I finished the post by asking, what happens to projects that do not comply?  … Continue Reading

USGBC Addresses Performance Gap

I’m impressed.  In one fell swoop, the USGBC has stepped up to the plate to address the primary criticisms of the LEED rating system.    Kudos to Scot Horst and the USGBC for acknowledging an issue that has bothered many users of the LEED rating system:  “Today there is all too often a disconnect, or performance … Continue Reading

Why Do Non-Public CIRs Mean LEEDigation?

If there was a LEEDigation doomsday clock, I would move it up about 5 minutes towards midnight based on the following decision by the USGBC.*  Real Life LEED recently reported that the USGBC has decreed that, starting June 26, 2009, Credit Interpretation Requests (CIRs) will no longer be applicable to all projects:  "Effective June 26, … Continue Reading

Two Days Until GreenBuild!

As you may know, this week is the United States Green Building Council’s national event, GreenBuild, in Boston:  USGBC’s Greenbuild conference and expo is an unparalleled opportunity to connect with other green building peers, industry experts, and influential leaders as they share insights on the green building movement and its diverse specialties. This year’s theme … Continue Reading

USGBC Supports Proposed Green Code

Here at Green Building Law Update, we remain troubled by the disbanding of the proposed ASHRAE 189.1 green building code committee, but we have to point out one bright spot.  As you may recall, last week we  discussed the merits of the “Proposed Standard 189: Standard for the Design of High-Performance Green Buildings Except Low-Rise … Continue Reading

Southern Builders v. Shaw Development: The Most Important Part!

This week at GBLU, we are focusing on the Shaw Development v. Southern Builders case, the first significant example of green building litigation.  On Monday, GBLU explained the importance of the case and reviewed the basic facts.  Today GBLU will review the most important part of the case, the contract between the parties and accompanying … Continue Reading

Congress Drills Down Green Building Regulation

You may remember that in previous posts, GBLU warned that September was going to be a big month for green building regulations in Washington D.C. It was anticipated that the D.C. City Council would vote on new green building codes on September 16 but the codes were tabled to allow for more feedback from affected parties. But … Continue Reading

Guarding Your Green Building Investment

While GBLU has written extensively about green building bonds, a reader recently pointed out that green building insurance should not be overlooked.   When you talk about green building insurance programs, you have to start with Fireman’s Fund.  Back in October 2006, Fireman’s Fund had the foresight to launch three products for commercial green buildings, … Continue Reading

A Midsummer Night’s Green

On August 7, I had the pleasure of attending the USGBC National Captial Region’s annual event, a Midsummer Night’s Green.  This year, the event was held in the stunning World Bank Atrium.  Tyler Coffey of Sigal Construction did a great job choosing the venue and organizing the event.  Bisnow on Business has a good summary of … Continue Reading
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