By Grey Lee

Last night we hosted a great program on the intricacies and details of LEEDv4 – the latest version of LEED which will be operational in June 2013 (we expect). Currently, the process to approve the new version is still open to comments (until 12/10/12) from any relevant party – such as any member of the MA Green Building Council or LEED professional in general. Here's a link to more info, and the slides from the presentation, on our site:

Chris Schaffner, from The Green Engineer (really, he is The Green Engineer), came and presented. Chris is a former board member of the Chapter and a LEED Fellow – one of a few dozen in the country recognized as outstanding leaders in our industry. He is also on the Technical Advisory Group for the new version of LEED and knows a lot of the ins and outs, having worked on streamlining the credits on this new version.

We went through a great slideshow describing how the various credits in each subsection of LEED have morphed into the new line-up. Some have disappeared, others are brand new. He described how the USGBC is trying to balance market adoption (make the system easy) with environmental impact (really make a difference for the planet), and how this version is a little more aggressive on sustainability.

The market has taken up LEED and now we can use it to drive real change in environmental impact. Of course, the entire industries that have grown up around LEED are a little bent out of shape with the change of the status quo – and resistance is significant. There are also the complicated logistics of getting the whole system finished in the next six months! That's going to be tricky, eh?

Chris asked us to please submit comments – especially if you think any of the new changes are good – so that the USGBC has the valuable feedback it needs to continue the evolution of LEED so that it can be the best tool we have to change the real estate industry. Here's a link to USGBC's comment site:

It was a great evening with about 30 chapter members in the audience. A few mentioned to me that they are interested in getting more involved! That is great!



[Above: Grey Lee, Andrea Love, Chris Schaffner, & Bob Kohn]

Kudos to Bob Kohn, Chair of the Education Committee, for organizing the program, and to Andrea Love (on our board) for providing the space and facility logistics at Payette (290 Congress St – a LEED Platinum Building!) Thanks to Chris Schaffner for providing his expertise and facilitation skill. I am sure we can look forward to more valuable programs in the future. Thanks again, everyone!

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