National Institute of Building Sciences Joins UN Global Compact
Co-hosts Consultation Workshop on Best Practice Toolkit for Land, Construction, Real Estate
Representatives attend a U.S. UN Global Compact Consultation Workshop to build a Best Practice Toolkit for the U.S. land, construction and real estate sectors.
The National Institute of Building Sciences recently joined the world’s largest corporate responsibility initiative—the United Nations (UN) Global Compact—with nearly 12,000 business and non-business participants in 160 countries. The Institute, as part of its participation in the UN Global Compact, co-hosted a U.S. Consultation Workshop on March 11 for the UN Global Compact and RICS Responsible Business Best Practice Toolkit for Land, Construction and Real Estate. During the gathering, representatives from the U.S. land, construction and real estate sectors provided feedback on the Consultative Draft of the Toolkit. Read the release.
Submit an Abstract for the October 2015 JNIBS Issue
The editors of the Journal of the National Institute of Building Sciences (JNIBS) are beginning the process of compiling articles for the October 2015 edition. The October issue will offer a special focus on security and disaster preparedness, including multihazard mitigation and risk assessment; building seismic safety; and cyber security. Additional feature stories will include: high-performance buildings; integrated resilient design; building information modeling (BIM); and more. Abstracts are due April 8. Submit an abstract for the issue. Interested in advertising? View the 2015 JNIBS Media Kit.
Building Innovation 2016, Conference & Expo Coming in January:
Reserve Your Sponsorship and Exhibitor Space Now
Your opportunity to interact with building industry professionals and stakeholders seeking the latest information on building science, technology and ways to collaborate to improve the built environment happens in nine months. Building Innovation 2016: The National Institute of Building Sciences Fourth Annual Conference & Expo is set for January 11-15, 2015, in Washington, D.C. You are invited to sponsor and/or exhibit as we explore innovative solutions for Achieving a Resilient Future. Building Innovation 2016 provides affordable opportunities to show your support for your industry and build awareness of your organization’s positive contributions to the building community. View all of the available opportunities and reserve your space now.
Energy Department and the Institute Release Better Buildings Workforce Guidelines
As a part of the Obama Administration’s effort to support greater energy efficiency through the Better Buildings Initiative, the U.S. Department of Energy and the National Institute of Building Sciences announced earlier this month the new Better Buildings Workforce Guidelines. The Better Buildings Workforce Guidelines, developed with feedback from industry experts, will help enhance and streamline commercial building workforce training and certification programs.
The guidelines provide a national framework for certification agencies across the country to roll out consistent programs. Up until now there have been no national guidelines for energy efficiency-related professional credentials, posing a barrier to the quality, consistency and scalability of this workforce. Read the release.
March 10th CFIRE Webinar Presentations and Recordings Now Available
The presentations and recordings from the recent Council on Finance, Insurance and Real Estate (CFIRE) webinar, “Financing Small Commercial Building Energy Performance Upgrades,” held March 10, are now available.
CFIRE recently issued a report, Financing Small Commercial Building Energy Performance Upgrades: Challenges and Opportunities, which offers findings and recommendations to help unlock the potential energy savings in the largest segment of the nation’s building stock. During the webinar, presenters Leanne Tobias, CFIRE chair and principal of Malachite LLC; James Finlay, principal at Finlay Consulting Group; Rois Langner, an engineer in the Commercial Buildings Research Group at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory; and Ryan M. Colker, program director for CFIRE at the National Institute of Building Sciences, discussed the report and highlighted opportunities for financing such energy performance upgrades. Access the presentations and a recording of the webinar.
Obama Issues Executive Order on Federal Greenhouse Gas, Energy Reductions and Climate Resilience
On March 19, President Barack Obama issued an Executive Order focused on advancing sustainability through the federal government. The Order provides significant focus on federal buildings as a key component for realizing the goal of a 40 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions over the next decade. Requirements reduce existing energy use intensity by 2.5 percent annually, increase use of clean energy, reduce water consumption by two percent annually, and that new buildings in 2020 be net-zero energy. The Order also addresses product selection, training, contracting and benchmarking.
In setting the goal for net-zero energy buildings, the Order uses the definition developed by the Institute in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Energy.
See the Executive Order.
Institute to Host Monthly Workshops on Cybersecurity for Building Control Systems
Highlights the Importance of Protecting Facilities, Building Occupants
From residential heating and automated entry systems to commercial facility monitoring systems of all kinds, buildings in the United States have seen a rise in the use of “smart” systems to improve their functionality in the past several years. Yet, with this increasing reliance on operational technology, very few people are aware of the potential threats from hackers and others with malicious intent. Internet-enabled building control systems provide critical services that allow a building to meet the functional and operational needs of building occupants. However, once installed, many of these systems have minimal protections to keep hackers out.
Throughout 2015, the National Institute of Building Sciences is sponsoring a Cybersecurity Workshop series to help facility professionals learn how to make their buildings more secure and reduce the risks. The Introduction to Cybersecuring Building Control Systems Workshop and Advanced Cybersecuring Building Control Systems Workshop will be held once per month throughout 2015. View the full list of calendar dates.
BEST4 Conference: Online Registration Rates End April 8
Register Now to Save $50 off Onsite Registration
Hurry! Register for the fourth BEST Conference Building Enclosure Science & Technology™ (BEST4), April 12-15, 2015, at the Westin Kansas City at Crown Center in Kansas City, Missouri, before the savings run out. Plan to be there when the National Institute of Building Sciences and the Building Enclosure Council-Kansas City deliver the BEST program on Performance-Driven Architectural Design. Register now to save $50. Online registration ends Wednesday, April 8.
Don’t miss out on collecting continuing education unit (CEU) credits and gaining knowledge from the industry’s leading experts as they delve into building systems that deliver high energy efficiency, good indoor climate and long-term performance. AIA has approved the BEST4 Conference for 18 continuing education system (CES) credits (Health, Safety, Welfare). Come early and join us at a cash bar reception on Sunday and then stay over late to get a preview of the future Building Enclosure Commissioning (BECx) Education Workshop on Thursday! It’s the BEST place to be for insights in building enclosure design technology. Register now!
Wisconsin Students Talk Energy Policy
Institute Presidential Advisor Ryan M. Colker (front) speaks with high school students from Janesville, Wisconsin, participating in a Washington seminar. This contingent of students was interested in energy policy and conducted interviews with experts during their visit to Washington, D.C. They will present their findings to their peers upon returning to the classroom.
Institute Presents at DOE Codes Conference, Discusses Outcomes and Demographics
This week, the U.S. Department of Energy held the National Energy Codes Conference in Nashville, Tennessee, the first national conference since 2011 dedicated solely to energy codes. The conference brought together stakeholders from across the industry to examine how codes are evolving, with a specific focus on compliance. National Institute of Building Sciences Presidential Advisor Ryan Colker participated on the opening panel, “The Future of Energy Codes.” Colker’s presentation primarily focused on the challenges and opportunities revealed by the Institute's recent work with the International Code Council on the future of code officials. The panel also covered the emergence of outcome-based provisions in code—an emerging compliance path identified by the Institute’s Consultative Council, which the Institute and a host of industry supporters championed for inclusion in the 2015 International Green Construction Code (IgCC). View more details on the conference. Download Colker's presentation.
DOE Better Buildings Webinar to Focus on Zero-Energy Buildings
The U.S. Department of Energy will hold the webinar, “Zero-Energy Buildings: What are they and how do we build them?” on Tuesday, April 7, from 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm EDT, as part of its Better Buildings Webinar Series. Join this webinar to learn about the zero-energy building efforts of Better Buildings partners.
Better Buildings Challenge partner Walgreens will share their experiences designing, constructing and operating their zero-energy store in Evanston, Illinois. The Rocky Mountain Institute will describe their collaboration with Better Buildings Alliance member McDonalds and other partners to determine the feasibility of zero-energy quick serve restaurants. The National Institute of Building Sciences will provide an update on recent efforts to develop an industry definition for zero-energy buildings.
Zero-energy buildings combine energy efficiency and renewable energy generation to consume only as much energy as can be produced onsite through renewable resources. Achieving zero energy is an ambitious yet increasingly achievable goal that is gaining momentum across geographic regions and markets. Register today.
Take the BCAP Survey on Energy Modeling Software Usage
The Building Codes Assistance Project (BCAP) is conducting a survey on the current usage of energy modeling software among design professionals. While modeling at any stage provides valuable data on how much energy a building will consume, energy modeling during the conceptual stage influences design decisions, promotes cost-effective energy savings and facilitates energy code compliance in the later phases of the project.
More design teams are choosing to pursue energy code compliance using the performance path as opposed to the prescriptive path. The performance path requires the use of computer simulations of operational energy usage. BCAP will use the results of this survey to identify and remove barriers to the widespread use of building energy modeling software, so that even more design professionals will have the option of choosing the performance path. Help prepare professionals for the evolving demands of an industry increasingly concerned with energy usage. The survey ends April 30, but don’t wait! Take the survey now.
WBDG Posts 2014 Beyond Green™ Award Winners, Revamps Case Study Database
The 2014 Sustainable Buildings Industry Council (SBIC) Beyond Green™ High-Performance Building & Community Award winning case studies are now available on the Case Studies page of the WBDG Whole Building Design Guide®. Following a complete redesign, the WBDG Case Studies page is now a searchable database where case studies can be found by name, category, building type, size and receipt of a Beyond Green™ Award. And stay tuned. The call for the 2015 SBIC Beyond Green™ Award entries comes out in May.