ACC calls green building rating system 'fatally flawed'

Published: June 26, 2012 6:00 am ET

Related to this story

Topics Materials, Public Policy, Suppliers, Sustainability, Construction

WASHINGTON (June 26, 12:40 p.m. ET) — The American Chemistry Council called the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) Green Building Review “fatally flawed” at a June 25 session to discuss a revised rating systems for federal government use.

Under the Energy Independence and Security Act (EISA), GSA is required to evaluate green-building certification systems every five years to identify a system “deem(ed) to be most likely to encourage a comprehensive and environmentally sound approach to certification of green buildings.”

The last review in 2007 resulted in GSA using LEED as the exclusive green building standard system of the federal government. For 2012, GSA commissioned Pacific Northwest National Laboratory to prepare the Green Building Certification System Review, and the June 25 session was held to gather input from the public and key stakeholders, such as the manufacturers of energy efficient building products.

Keith Christman, ACC’s managing director of plastic markets, outlined what Washington-based ACC considers limitations of the GSA report.

According to ACC, the report offers only a cursory examination of the green building rating systems it reviews, including the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED program and the International Living Building Institute’s Living Building Challenge (LBC).

Neither program operates in a manner that meets the consensus requirements necessary for the federal government under the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (EISA), according to ACC.

“No one green building system meets all the federal requirements outlined in EISA. There is no basis for the continued monopoly for LEED within the federal government. GSA should expand its review to consider recommending any consensus standard that meets EISA, including ASHRAE 189.1 and the International Green Construction Code,” Christman said.

“The review merely accepts USGBC’s claim to be consensus-based without critical review. Numerous, substantial stakeholder groups in building and construction, as well as members of Congress, have argued that LEED standards are not consensus-based,” he continued.

Christman pointed out that the GSA review focuses on LEED 2009, not the current LEED [version 4] draft under consideration by USGBC, and that GSA “should not implement a different version of LEED than the one the agency has reviewed.”

“Each change is a new standard. If GSA and DOE want to use a new version of the standard, they would need to conduct a new review,” Christman said.

LEED version 4 has been the subject of concern and criticism from elected officials in Congress and across the country because of its arbitrary restrictions of chemical substances essential to many of the very products that contribute to energy efficiency.


Comments

ACC calls green building rating system 'fatally flawed'

Published: June 26, 2012 6:00 am ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

China's PVC exports face challenges

August 22, 2014 2:14 pm ET

Despite robust growth in the first half of the year, China's PVC exports now faces new challenges, due to trade barriers and new capacity ramping up...    More

Image

Westminster Tool creates academy to find, train future toolmakers

August 22, 2014 2:06 pm ET

Westminster Tool Inc. begins its own Westminster Academy to find and train skilled employees.    More

Image

Prosthetic arm concept wins in student thermoforming competition

August 22, 2014 1:56 pm ET

Pressure forming company Freetech Plastics Inc. has returned with its annual Student Thermoformed Part Competition, intended to expand the exposure...    More

Image

Composite bridge maker also leading the way in installation

August 22, 2014 1:21 pm ET

Lightweight, low maintenance and strong, fiber-reinforced polymer (FRP) bridge decks finally are crossing the line from specialty projects to wider...    More

Image

Reiloy Westland to build new headquarters

August 22, 2014 12:53 pm ET

Reiloy Westland Corp. will build a 45,000-square-foot headquarters factory, as the Kansas maker of screws and barrels expands under the ownership of G...    More

Market Reports

Thermoformed Packaging 2014 Market Review & Outlook North America

This in-depth report analyzes economic and market trends, legislative/regulatory activity impacting supply and demand, business opportunities and threats, materials pricing, manufacturing technology, as well as growth strategies being implemented by thermoformed packaging companies.

Learn more

Pipe, Profile & Tubing Extrusion in North America 2014

U.S. demand for extruded plastics is expected to grow by 3 percent in 2014, with PVC remaining the largest segment.

Plastic pipe will post the strongest gains through 2018, continuing to take market share from competing materials in a range of markets.

Our latest market report provides in-depth analysis of current trends and their financial impact on the pipe, profile and tubing extrusion industry in North America.

Learn more

2014 Injection Molding Industry Report

GROWTH, OPPORTUNITY IN SIGHT FOR INJECTION MOLDERS IN 2014

In the wake of the economic turbulence earlier in this decade, molders today find themselves in much better shape. Molders are gaining a competitive advantage by investing in people, equipment and seeking inroads into new markets on a global scale.

Growth in the injection molding industry is going to be driven by low financing costs and a continued move to reshore some business.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

September 10, 2014 - September 12, 2014Plastics Caps & Closures 2014

January 14, 2015 - January 14, 2015Plastics in Automotive

February 4, 2015 - February 6, 2015Plastics News Executive Forum 2015

More Events