SU embraces LEED green-building guidelines, will help develop organizational portfolio program to recognize environmentally responsible leadership
SU embraces LEED green-building guidelines, will help develop organizational portfolio program to recognize environmentally responsible leadershipNovember 09, 2005Kevin Morrowkdmorrow@syr.edu
Syracuse University will seek Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification for new major construction projects and will assist the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) in developing a program to recognize environmentally responsible leadership across all aspects of an organization’s building portfolio. Chancellor Nancy Cantor will make the dual announcement today at the fourth annual Greenbuild International Conference & Expo in Atlanta.
USGBC President, CEO and Founding Chairman S. Richard Fedrizzi invited Cantor to Atlanta to participate in Wednesday’s opening keynote session. More than 10,000 people are expected to attend the conference, which is sponsored by the USGBC, a nonprofit coalition of more than 5,500 private companies, nonprofit organizations and governmental agencies that promotes education and advocacy for high-performance, environmentally friendly buildings.
“Syracuse University is committed to be a leader in the development and use of innovations in ‘green’ building design and operation,” says Chancellor Cantor. “Our efforts cover the entire spectrum of activities, from basic and applied research conducted through the Syracuse Center of Excellence to adoption of the latest principles and practices to design, construct and operate new and renovated buildings on our campus.”
With the announcement, SU is pledging to follow the LEED certification process and apply for a LEED rating for new building and renovation projects exceeding $10 million and will use LEED criteria as a framework for making decisionsrelated to sustainable design in designing and constructing projects of less than $10 million.
The University won’t seek LEED certification for major construction projects already under way-such as the $27 million Newhouse III and the $107 million Life Sciences Complex-because of the effect on schedules and budgets that are already in place, but SU will work closely with the USGBC to apply the LEED methodology wherever feasible as the projects are executed, and will pursue the highest LEED rating in construction of the campus headquarters of the Syracuse Center of Excellence in Environmental and Energy Systems.
“The decision to use the LEED Rating System to improve environmental performance campus-wide is an impressive demonstration of SU’s commitment to improving the environmental and economic health of the community,” says the USGBC’s Fedrizzi, who holds an M.B.A. (1987) from SU’s Martin J. Whitman School of Management.
The USGBC describes the LEED Green Building Rating System, created in 2000, as a “voluntary, consensus-based national standard for developing high-performance, sustainable buildings.” The system was created to define “green building” by establishing a common standard of measurement; promote integrated, whole-building design practices; recognize environmental leadership in the building industry; stimulate green competition; raise consumer awareness of green building benefits; and transform the building market.
SU will also be among nine public and private entities that will work with the USGBC to develop a new program to offer guidance and recognition for organization-wide environmental excellence.
“One of USGBC’s most important new initiatives is the development of a LEED portfolio performance program, designed to help owners improve their environmental performance across an entire portfolio of buildings,” says Fedrizzi. “Several industry leaders-organizations that focus as much on their values as on their bottom line-have already made a commitment to this groundbreaking new program. Given Syracuse University’s academic, research and athletic leadership, I’m not surprised that SU is now proving itself to be a leader in the green building movement as well.”In addition to SU, organizations involved in the portfolio performance project are Bank of America, the California Department of General Services, CitiGroup, PNC Bank, Toyota North America, Thomas Properties Group, USAA Realty and Wells Fargo.