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July 30, 2012: USGBC, More Than 1,200 Signatories Ask GSA to Continue Using LEED

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), with more than 1,200 signatories including companies, cities, and associations, has sent a letter to the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) asking that it continue to use the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) green building rating system across the federal building portfolio.

As The NEWS previously reported, 56 members of Congress from both parties had submitted a letter to the GSA requesting the agency reconsider use of the LEED rating system for federal buildings if certain “anti-chemical provisions” are not removed. (Click here for story.)

The USGBC letter says that figures released by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) show “how successful GSA has been at reducing costs, improving efficiency, and eliminating waste” using its current system. “According to the OMB, investments in efficiency over the last four years are expected to save $18 billion in energy costs over the life of the projects.”

USGBC states, “LEED is the most widely used high‐performance building rating system in the United States. The private sector uses LEED to both verify and communicate the quality of high performance buildings. If GSA, as the ‘landlord of the federal government,’ were to require or use something else, it would add cost to the building and leasing process across the building industry. We are not in favor of adding cost.”

USGBC’s letter concludes, “We support your continuation of the rating tool evaluation process and focus on the usability, market acceptance, and effectiveness of rating tools rather than distractions focused on a single issue.”

Publication date: 7/30/2012

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