The Green Building Movement in Arizona
October 9, 2017
USGBC Mountain West Regional Director, U.S. Green Building Council
The green building industry has come a long way – both here in Arizona and throughout the world – since the launch of LEED less than 20 years ago.
LEED has quickly become the world’s most widely used green building rating system and is on pace to directly contribute $29.8 billion to the U.S. GDP by 2018, while supporting nearly eight million jobs. In Arizona, green construction projects significantly impact the state of our economic vitality, in addition to our environmental health. Between 2015 and 2018, LEED projects contributed $6.8 billion to the state’s GDP, creating 78,000 jobs, $4.56 billion in labor income, and $204.6 million in tax revenue. Arizona currently has more than 1,100 building projects registered with LEED, and of those, 562 have earned LEED certification, totaling more than 64,800,000 certified square feet of space.
These are impressive numbers – but given the momentum behind the green building movement, there is so much more we can accomplish together.
We are continuing to push LEED forward with its latest version. LEED v4 is designed to offer a more flexible, performance-based approach that features goal-oriented credits, measureable results and a more user-friendly experience.
What does that mean for commercial projects?
All buildings are different and LEED v4 offers flexibility with different strategies available to fit unique projects.
LEED brings smart grid thinking to the forefront by rewarding projects that participate in demand response programs.
LEED offers a more comprehensive approach to water efficiency by evaluating a building’s total water use.
The new version of the rating system features an expanded focus on materials – not just how they affect buildings, but also how they affect human health and the environment as well.
The documentation is streamlined, providing better customer experience.