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CHICAGO-The Institute of Real Estate Management, based here, hassigned a pact with the US Green Building Council, based inWashington, DC to cooperate on the promotion and education ofsustainable development. The two non-profit organizations joined ina non-binding memorandum of intent, and will find ways of jointlypushing green practices, such as a shared publication, lobbying andclasses.

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Reggie Mullins, president of IREM, says there's many things thetwo groups can do to help convince developers and owners to gogreen. The USGBC is composed of about 15,000 members, and IREM hasmore than 18,000 members and 500 corporate members. Suggestedcollaborations include a joint newsletter or magazine,cross-advertising and lobbying efforts and joint educationalcontent production. There are some limitations: USGBC will continueto solely maintain and implement LEED-focused initiatives andstandards, for example.

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One major initiative that IREM can do, Mullins tellsGlobeSt.com, is promoting and educating owners to adopt greenpractices to existing buildings. The USGBC usually focuses on newdevelopment. "Developers these days aren't really even gettingloans unless they can show they're going green," she says. "We wantour members to know that this issue is one of our five hot topics,and that it's not going to go away."

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She says she's noticed that since many tenants have been pushingto have green spaces when leasing, the two divergent partiesresponsible for green are starting to catch up to each other.Mullins said she's seen this happen personally, as VP, commercialreal estate management at the Cafritz Co. in Washington, DC. "Wehad a tenant at our building here that said that was the mainreason they selected the building, because of the owner's greeninitiatives," she says. "Owners are starting to learn it's not justhow much electricity you can save, it's many things, such as whatyou do with waste water, how you manage your trash, how are paperproducts recycled, what kind of carpet you're using, etc. It's morethan just energy. That's why we're doing this partnership, to helpreach as many people as possible about how to go green."

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