Ever wonder what it's like to be in the same place with +25,000 people all focused on sustainability? It's exciting and it fills you with a sense of hope and renewed committment. This was my third consecutive Greenbuild.
I left Charlottesville at 6:15 am last Monday and arrived in Boston in time for my 1pm meeting at the Knoll Offices on Broad Street. We had a Face to Face meeting of the Northeast Corridor Regional Council that was very productive. We decided to go back to our boards and ask if there is any interest in having a regional event similar or complementary to Greenbuild.
At the opening plenary session, we were humbled by Archbishop Desmond Tutu when he thank us repeatedly for our courage in electing President-Elect Barack Obama. The expo floor was simply enormous. Honda was the only car manufacturer to have a vehicle there and the Kohler rep told me they were converting their entire product line to comply with the EPA's WaterSense program.
There were people there from 60 countries according to President and CEO Rick Fedrizzi. Scott Horst of USGBC talked about the urgent need to improve our built environment. Folks from GBCI described the changes coming to the LEED rating systems and LEED AP status.
We had an impromptu meeting of the Virginia Chapters of the USGBC. We agreed to take the James River Green Building Council's advocacy position paper back to our boards for unanimous approval so we can send it down to the state capitol this legislative session.
And despite the cold crisp weather of Boston, we managed to see a little bit of the city and have some fun as well. Greenbuild is where I recharge my batteries every year, do a little networking and celebrate the work we do collectively. Thanks to my colleagues and the incredible staff and volunteers at USGBC for making this a fantastic event!
-Jeff Sties, Principal / AIA / LEED ap