Going Green: Green building
Our Terry Ettinger speaks with the U.S. Green Building Council about the impact of green building techniques and construction.
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SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- Building a green building is about more than just saving energy, it's also about increasing productivity in the workplace and reputation.
Buildings such as King and King Architects in downtown Syracuse or Welch Allyn Global Headquarters in Skaneatlas Falls represent the trend in new building and remodeling projects.
"I think what's happening right now in the construction and the design community in Syracuse and Central New York is really beginning an amazing journey. They're starting to understand that this is not just a great story for the environment. Yes, green buildings do have a tremendous environmental benefit but it's a really strong human performance story as well," said Rick Fedrizzi, U.S. Green Building Council.
According to Fedrizzi, buildings that minimize the use of resources and reduce waste by using more daylight and improving air quality translate into higher productivity.
"People are healthier, they perform better on their tasks no matter what they do in the building. Kids in green school perform better and get better test scores. People in green hospitals heal quicker. People in a manufacturing setting process higher numbers of product output at higher quality levels, and there's less incidents of workplace injury," noted Fedrizzi.
The use of green constructional techniques should soon become the rule, rather than the exception.
"We've reached a tipping point where going backwards really tells too many stories about what that building is about and who the owners are and they really care about. So, putting your best foot forward means you want to create a building that uses less energy and less water, you want your employees to be healthy, you want the community enhanced by the building," Fedrizzi said.
Plus, there is the energy savings. The Welch Allyn building renovation included expanding the square footage by 55 percent, but energy consumption increased only by eight percent, and water usage decreased by 25 percent.