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Excepted from a position document from Trane, the HVAC systems and servicesbusiness of American Standard Cos. Trane has its New Jersey offices in Parsippany.

Background on GreenMedia coverage of “green building” practices has been expanded at a feverish pace. Private developers were the first to recognize the total benefits of building green. Real estate developers like New York City’s Durst family saw the benefit and took the risk of building one of the first green buildings, 4 Times Square….

What Are the Benefits?

  • Environmental: Green buildings use less energy, consume fewer resources in theirconstruction and have minimal impact on their surrounding environment….
  • Health: Green buildings have better indoor air quality, reducing absenteeism andillness among occupants.
  • Productivity: Studies have shown that people working in green buildings are 5% to16% more productive….
  • Financial: The myth about green buildings is that they cost substantially more tobuild…. When green building practices were first conceived, that was true. A rapidlearning curve…has reduced the premium…. This premium is quickly recoveredthrough the substantial reduction in operating costs inherent in green buildings.

    What Are the Opportunities?

    As the public has become more familiar with the green concept, government entities…have investigated, and in many cases, taken legislative action to accelerate the green process…. In 1998, the United State Green Buildings Council created LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design)…establishing national criteria for sustainable buildings. LEED promotes several green-building initiatives, including integration of whole-building design, creating sustainable communities, facilitating green-building competitions and increasing public awareness….

  • Princeton, NJ amended its master plan in 2005 to encourage the use of LEEDstandards in…all public facilities and publicly-funded projects.
  • New York City enacted Local Law 86 in late 2005, which requires city-funded capitalprojects to be designed and constructed in accordance with LEED standards…thecity is now considering how best to address the issue of upgrading existing buildings….
  • Boston has added requirements to the Boston Zoning Code that require both publicand private developments over 50,000 sf to be LEED certified.

    “Green building” standards are moving from exotic to mainstream. The myths about LEED buildings costing substantially more…have been quantitatively disproved. The business, human and environmental benefits are significant. Why wouldn’t every political and business leader in NJ proactively support and expedite the transformation of the building industry…?

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