Friday, June 22, 2007

More Green News

. Friday, June 22, 2007

The House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform approved legislation June 12 that will require the federal government to adopt the AIA’s 2030 energy goals for federal buildings. The Carbon-Neutral Federal Government Act (H.R. 2635), introduced by Committee Chairman Henry Waxman (D-CA) seeks to reduce carbon emissions from the federal government, the nation’s largest energy consumer. This bill will be a critical piece in comprehensive energy legislation that Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) hopes the House of Representatives will approve by July 4. The Carbon-Neutral Federal Government Act will require all new federal buildings and buildings undergoing major renovations to immediately consume 50 percent less fossil-fuel generated energy when compared to a similar building’s use in 2003. The legislation calls for further reductions in energy use until 2030, when all new federal buildings and buildings undergoing major renovations will be required to use zero fossil fuel-generated energy. AIA President-elect Marshall E. Purnell, FAIA, testified before the Oversight Committee in May and urged the Committee to include the AIA’s 2030 goals in their energy bill. “The AIA is delighted that Chairman Waxman included our 2030 targets for federal buildings in this bill,” says Andrew Goldberg, Assoc. AIA, manager, Federal Affairs. “But it still has a long way to go before becoming law, which is why continued advocacy by AIA members is so vital.” Login to the Government Advocacy Center.

The International Union of Architects (UIA) announced on June 8 that the theme of this year’s World Day of Architecture is achieving zero carbon dioxide emissions. In choosing this theme, the UIA is calling on architects’ capacity to reduce carbon dioxide emissions drastically in the design, construction, and maintenance of buildings and cities. Because almost half of the emissions of this greenhouse-effect producing gas comes from the construction and transportation sectors, the UIA notes, mobilization of the world’s architects is crucial. Several UIA Member Sections already have joined the efforts to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. World Architect Day is celebrated on October 1, concurrently with the United Nations’ World Habitat Day. The UIA aims to highlight architects’ awareness of the current ecological emergency and invites all its member sections to organize programs on this theme for the first of October. For more information, visit the UIA Web site.