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Greg Hale’s Blog

Demand for Green Buildings

Greg Hale

Posted September 18, 2012 in Green Enterprise, Living Sustainably, Solving Global Warming

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Guest post by Jay Orfield, Welch Environmental Innovation Fellow with NRDC's Center for Market Innovation.

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Clay Nesler, Vice President Global Energy and Sustainability at Johnson Controls, sees movement in the market's demand for green buildings, and we're fortunate to have him working with us in our effort to accelerate demand for energy efficiency retrofits.


Around this time last year, our High Performance Demonstration Project, first described in this blog, was chosen as one of the leading commitments for the Clinton Global Initiative Annual Meeting in New York, and was presented on stage by President Clinton. We are honored to be presenting a progress report during this year’s Annual Meeting later this month.

Every company strives for “high performance”. The desire to get the most production out of each employee has led to a focus on and advancements in leadership, decision-making, communication, conflict-resolution, goal setting, etc. Recently, this desire has also created a movement toward high performance workspaces -- spaces that maximize the performance of their occupants.

High performance isn’t just about energy efficiency, but high performance spaces do incorporate efficient lighting, heating and cooling measures that combine to create spaces that cost less to operate, consume fewer natural resources and occupy a smaller carbon footprint.

40% of the nation’s energy is consumed in buildings, and energy efficiency retrofits are beginning to happen. But the migration of the concept of energy efficiency from the sustainability arena to mainstream economic and financial decision-making needs to be accelerated.

This is the key objective of our efforts. By participating in a portfolio of high-profile efficient build-out projects and by quantifying and verifying the savings, we are developing an open-source blueprint for both implementation and value analysis of the benefits of high performance build-outs. The goal is a long-term market shift.

For more information and to see the partners discuss the project, please visit our website on the commitment at http://www.nrdc.org/business/CGI/.

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Switchboard is the staff blog of the Natural Resources Defense Council, the nation’s most effective environmental group. For more about our work, including in-depth policy documents, action alerts and ways you can contribute, visit NRDC.org.

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