Greetings. My name is Stuart Kaplow and I want to introduce myself, as I assume the helm as the new publisher of the Green Building Law Update blog.
But first, thank you to Chris Cheatham, the founder of this blog, for his years of good work in spreading the word of green building.
Second, an admission; I have never blogged. This is all new to me. As I find my voice on this blog, please cut me a little slack because I commit to you this blog will be a valuable resource for sustainability and green building. I do know something about green building law. I’m a sustainability and green building attorney and I have been doing this environmental ‘stuff’ for more than 25 years.
A bit about my perspective on green. I drank the green Kool-Aid. I believe green building can save the planet!
I am a huge fan of LEED. I also spearheaded the law making Maryland the first state to enable use of the International Green Construction Code. I am particularly impressed with the Department of Defense’s adaptation of the ASHRAE 189.1 standard published as its green building criteria earlier this year (.. and yes, the military is also pursuing LEED). I would be remiss if I did not also note my belief that Enterprise’s Green Communities criteria offers a great option for residential green building. Most of my green building clients pursue LEED, but there is more than one path to sustainability.
As the principal of the law firm that bears my name, I assemble teams of experienced attorneys, elite scientists, top of their field environmental specialists, talented engineers, and marketing gurus, on a project basis, to leverage the local real estate knowledge and nationally recognized technical ability necessary to assure that client objectives are swiftly and successfully realized.
I am a Maryland attorney and our law firm assists clients across the country, and increasingly internationally, working with their local counsel, or often through ajhon, an independent non law environmental consulting business affiliate of the law firm. ajhon is the Maasai language word for Green. The Maasai are among the fiercest warriors in Africa and it is that orientation that describes my view of “environmental risk as an opportunity”!
In an effort to gain some perspective on my view of sustainability and, admittedly to recreate, I have trekked to some of the wildest real estate on the planet from Kilimanjaro (.. where I met the Maasai) to Everest, with many summits and mountaineering adventures in between.
Second only to the joy I find in the mountains is the fun I experience practicing law. And I would like to be your sustainability and green building attorney.
Finally, I am working on my first substantive post on the appeals to USGBC member approval of the LEED v4 rating systems. I hope to post that article tomorrow ..