Articles

HOUSTON SETS THE PACE!

HOUSTON SETS THE PACE!

By Jonathan Kraatz

Today the Houston City Council adopted the first city PACE program in Texas - providing PACE economic development opportunity and environmental benefits to the nation's fourth largest city and its entire extra-territorial jurisdiction.  After Mayor Annise Parker called for PACE earlier this year, Laura Spanjian, the Director of the City of Houston Office of Sustainability, launched a well run campaign to bring a PACE in a Box program to Houston. 

Laura's team of key city officials and stakeholders met bi-weekly with a tight schedule and clear goals.  It was a beautiful thing.  We've copied her model to create a "Starting a PACE Program Tasks and Timeline" outline of everything your community needs to start a PACE program in 14 weeks.  Laura's PACE leadership started years before March 2012, when Laura spoke at our first PACE presentation at Thompson & Knight in Houston.  Then she labored with so many of us through the legislative process, the creation of PACE in a Box, and finally the establishment of Houston's PACE program.

Those of you who have played roles large and small to create a strong, uniform, open-market program for all of Texas should take pride in helping to bring this Houston program to life.  Join me in congratulating Laura for her long standing effort to bring PACE home to Houston.  Be thinking of how to grow PACE projects in Houston and PACE programs for all of Texas.  Congratulations to all!

We did it, Laura; We did it!

2030 Districts Piercing Boundaries

At the recent 2030 Districts Summit in Cleveland, San Antonio officially became the 11th 2030 District, piercing the previous boundary of the initial ten Districts, and further demonstrating the market readiness of the privately-led, publicly-supported 2030 Districts initiative.

“When we created the first 2030 District in Seattle, it was always intended to be a replicable model. We saw room in the green building movement for a private sector focus on uniting downtown property owners and building professionals around a common set of performance goals. The pace of the 2030 District’s growth has astounded a number of us, and we are thrilled to see it continue,” says Brian Geller, Senior Vice President of Corporate Sustainability at Citi, and Founder and former Executive Director of the Seattle 2030 District.

District-wide carbon and resource reduction goals by the year 2030 have been previously discussed in 2030 Districts as a Movement. Although 2030 Districts is a private sector led movement, the impact of federal buildings and real estate leases through public sector tenants can be significant. Having knowledgeable and forward looking owners, like the General Services Administration (GSA), and federal agency tenants inside the 2030 Districts is a bonus. The 2015 Federal Executive Order andEnergy Efficiency Improvement Act will further reinforce local District implementation of the energy, water and transportation goals.

The 2030 Districts Network recently collaborated with the Urban Land Institute’s (ULI) Greenprint Center for Building Performance on data aggregation. Founded in 2009, Greenprint is a worldwide alliance of leading owners and financial institutions committed to improving the environmental performance of buildings, and its current database covers over 5,000 buildings and 1.2 billion square feet. The 2030 District building members will meaningfully contribute to the North American reporting portfolio. Participants can also build on a common language using the Greenprint platform providing analytics such as carbon calculation, online dashboards, auditability, and goal tracking.

To continue reading this article, please visit the GBIG website.

Building Performance Simulation

One of the inter-disciplinary events that USGBC Texas Gulf Coast Chapter organized this month was Dr. Dru Crawley’s talk on Building Performance Simulation. USGBC Texas Gulf Coast Chapter, jointly sponsored November's meeting of Association of Energy Engineers's along with ASHRAE and IBPSA.

Over the last 50 years, Building Simulation has evolved into a powerful tool. It allows easy comparison of the energy and environmental performance of many hundreds of design or retrofit options. Dr. Dru Crawley from Bentley Systems, touched upon the development of energy simulation tools since 1970s and briefed about various algorithms being currently used in Energy & Lighting/Daylighting Simulation software. He talked at length about where the BIM industry is headed towards integration of Modeled & Real data, and various technological advances that the building-industry is undergoing right now.

The meeting was held at Green Building Resource Center. 

View the full presentation.

Call for Nominations 2016-2017 Texas Gulf Coast Region - Regional Leadership Council

Call for Nominations 2016-2017 Texas Gulf Coast Region - Regional Council

As 2015 winds down, USGBC - Texas Gulf Coast Chapter (TGCC) is preparing to elect new members to lead the organization.  In 2016, we will be transitioning the title of Texas Gulf Coast Chapter (TGCC) to Texas Gulf Coast Region (TGCR).  We will also transition the title, “Board of Directors” to “Regional Council (RC)”.   This reorganization is part of an exciting move to a single “Texas” Chapter.  

Members of the Texas Gulf Coast Region-Regional Council (TGCR-RC) drive the development of strategic and tactical activities here in the Texas Gulf Coast Region. If you have interest in sharing your passion to support the local green building movement or can think of a colleague that we should get to know, please keep reading!

REGIONAL COUNCIL POSITIONS

USGBC-TGCR is pleased to announce a call for applicants for the 6 seats open for the 2016-2017 Regional Council.

The USGBC-TGCR RC represents a diversity of locally based leaders who advise on strategic and tactical activities implemented as part of USGBC’s global work plan. This leadership group works collaboratively within a larger network in order to develop and implement integrative, consistent, and effective local work plans in all markets. This structure further reports local metrics that contribute to the global success of the USGBC community.

The USGBC-TGCR RLC serves as the primary local volunteer leadership voice for USGBC with the following objectives:

  • Market Analysis: Identify local market trends, power players, initiatives, priorities, and other factors that relate to USGBC’s strategic goals and conduct a ‘power map’ of local leaders who are critical to the success of USGBC locally in order to determine their level of support and influence.
  • Strategy & Annual Work Planning: Develop, evaluate, and revise 3-year strategy and annual work plan within the context of USGBC’s strategy that is informed by the market analysis. This includes drafting an annual budget and managing oversight of expenses.
  • Market Development: Maintain quarterly report of real estate market opportunities (i.e. development announcements, permits etc.) for Business Development team, status of LEED projects & calendar of LEED plaque presentations.
  • Member, Volunteer & Partner Engagement: Establish, support, and evaluate activities for members, partners, and volunteers (group and individuals) on an annual basis that support outreach, education, advocacy, community/relationship building, and grassroots activities through the annual work plan. Cultivate leadership and manage structure for engagement among these individuals to serve locally. Ensure the implementation of a meaningful volunteer recognition program.
  • Celebration of Leadership: Guide the development of an annual report and public activities that celebrate local success in LEED and sustainability. Annual report data should focus externally and also be a guide to inform the local strategy and work of USGBC.
  • Fundraising and Support: Work to support local budget through fundraising and sponsorship in conjunction with local staff.

Participation in this group is a unique opportunity for local building professionals to lead the creation of a livable and sustainable Texas Gulf Coast Region. RC service offers the opportunity to grow personally and professionally; to develop meaningful relationships with other passionate and motivated individuals; and to make a difference in your local community. We are striving to recruit a diverse group of professionals composed of industry leaders from all aspects of the building industry. Diversity in interest and expertise is strongly encouraged.

For the 2016-2017 election, 6 seats are open.

  • Terms are for two years and begin January 1, 2016. Successful candidates will be expected to attend an orientation meeting with fellow incoming members in January 2016.
  • The group meets on a monthly basis, typically the third Wednesday of the month from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM, at a location within the Houston Metropolitan Region.
  • The monthly time commitment for members is approximately 10 – 12 hours.
  • Members do not receive compensation for service.
  • Must attend one of two leadership retreats (Five hour events January 2016 and October 2016.   To be held Friday mornings from 8:00 AM to 1:00 PM.)

Criteria

  • Must be an individual member of the USGBC-TGCC in good standing (membership current within last 30 days)
  • Must have a minimum of 10 years industry experience. Ideal candidates will have more
  • Must be willing to commit 8 - 10 hours a month in service of the objectives described above
  • Must be willing to fundraise and commit a minimum of 4 hours per month to financial development for the chapter
  • Ideal candidate can demonstrate engagement with Chapter committees
  • Ideal candidate is a LEED accredited professional working in the green building design + construction industry with a wide variety of background and professional experience.
  • Ideal candidate has previous non-profit leadership experience, and are passionate about the sustainable built environment and its impact on the local community

If you would like be considered for a position on the USGBC-TGCR Regional Council, please return your application form by 11:59 PM EST on December 3rd, 2015.

A Nominating Committee will review all applications and assemble a slate of qualified candidates for election by the Chapter members.

If you have questions about the nomination process, please e-mail David MacLean, USGBC-Texas Gulf Coast Chapter, Chair-Elect (dmaclean@sebesta.com). We look forward to seeing your applications!

COMMITTEE POSITIONS

Much of USGBC-Texas Gulf Coast Region’s work is carried out by members who volunteer to serve on committees. Committee positions offer tremendous opportunities to develop and demonstrate your leadership. All of our committees are currently recruiting new membership. If you have interest in joining a committee, please complete this interest form.