Tag: products

June 4, 2016

April Forum Recap: Indoor Air Quality

by Jaime Alvarez How do the buildings we inhabit affect our well being? Should we be concerned with the health impacts of the construction materials that go into them? While we are well aware of the hazards of outdoor air pollution and understand its sources, we may understand less about indoor air quality (IAQ). The April Forum provided important insights into what to look out for and what’s being done to address it.   Three experienced professionals including a building consultant, a public advocate, and a medical doctor gathered at the office of Steven Winter Associates to inform us of indoor air quality concerns, tools for measurement, and proven results from green buildings. (more…)

June 3, 2010

What’s going on with federal green building policy?

A green building news update from Capitol Hill, by GreenHomeNYC volunteer Adam Szlachetka. Despite trouble with the larger energy policy overhaul on Capitol Hill, on May 6 the House and Senate advanced bills to improve energy efficiency in homes and other products nationwide. (more…)

January 13, 2010

January Green Building Forum – Showcase: Green Building Materials Catwalk

Join GreenHomeNYC as we do our annual Catwalk down the green runway! Architects, designers and product specialists will reveal building materials, products and resources they recommend using during their creative process. These professionals will discuss everything from recycled aluminum to solar, information resources to using few materials, and more. Some of the firms featured will be Gensler, MKG, Alt-technica and other consultants. All GreenHomeNYC forums are free and open to the public. Wednesday – January 20 from 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm Green Depot 222 Bowery at Prince Street Please RSVP below! (more…)

April 23, 2008

April 2008: Green Materials Catwalk

The Green Building Forum is held on the third Wednesday of each month (except December) @6:30 PM and features presentations by green building practitioners followed by discussion. The events are always free and open to the general public, but space is limited. Wednesday, April 16, 2008 Presentation 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm Location: Pratt Manhattan, 144 W 14th St, Rm. 213 The April forum featured 10 local green building experts presenting his/her favorite green material or technology. Presenters: Gita Nandan,Thread Collective, GreenHomeNYC Board Member Ryan Merkin, Steven Winter Assoc., GreenHomeNYC Volunteer Tim Keating, Director Rainforest Relief / Owner Earthbilt Wendy Meguro, Atelier Ten Debra Krueger, Bettencourt Green Building Supplies David Bergman Catherine Barton, Green Depot Andy McNamara, Bright Power Neil Chambers Chris Benedict Click here for full presenter bios. Session PowerPoint

Download Presenter bios. View session notes

July 19, 2006

Green Interiors: Fun with Furniture – July 19, 2006

The Green Building Forum is held on the third Wednesday of each month (except December) @6:30 PM and features presentations by green building practitioners followed by discussion. The events are always free and open to the general public. Please RSVP by email to: [email protected] View the notes and related information from all our past forums here, and look for details on upcoming forums on our events calendar. Many thanks to our speakers, hosts and attendees at the July forum, Summer Fun with Interiors, Part I of II Speakers: David Bergman, principal of his own architecture and interiors firm, and founder of Fire & Water, a furniture and lighting design/manufacturing company specializing in sustainably designed products. Jesse Johnson, Q Collection, a Manhattan-based furniture design company that is committed to addressing indoor air quality Where: Solar One (inside), Stuyvesant Cove Park East 23rd and the East River (6 Train to 23rd St, or L Train to 1st Ave.) Click for map and directions., 457 Madison Avenue When: Wednesday, July 19, 6:30 – 8:00 Who said sustainable interior design, furniture, textiles and lighting cannot be stylish, contemporary and appealing to a mainstream audience? Not the two guests that the July forum was pleased to welcome at the Solar One green building classroom located along the East River front at 23rd Street. The two guest speakers were David Bergman, head of David Bergman Architect and founder of Fire & Water, and Jesse Johnson, co-founder and CEO of Q Collection. David Bergman is breaking down barriers when it comes to the idea that eco-design is adobe homes, straw walls, grass mats, and only a hippie trend. Pointing out that we have come along way from that design style or lack thereof, companies like Vivavi and IIKH are creating cool and modern home furniture and accessories. Overcoming the legacy issue, David Bergman’s interiors and light fixtures are well-executed designs that are creative, fresh, and current yet constructed from sustainable, recycled materials and uses non-toxic finishes. Coining the term Eco Style or Transparent Green, the “green” is there, but it is not necessarily the first thing you see. What you do see and appreciate immediately is the visual and functional design intent. This is what you instantly see when viewing the beautiful, elegant, high-end furniture and rich and luxurious textiles of Q Collection. Q Collection is emphatically changing the outlook on sustainable design with their chic and striking pieces that have the health of humans and the health of the environment at the forefront of their designs. LIGHTING In the past, fluorescent lighting was associated with ugly fixtures, poor quality of light and discoloring skin tone. But technological improvements have made the fluorescent bulb the ideal replacement for standard incandescent applications. The incandescent bulb, considered a ‘glorified toaster’ since the filaments within glow and produce heat, is not efficient. Incandescent and halogen bulbs produce 10 to 20+ LPW (Lumens per Watt); while compact fluorescents produce 50-60 LPW and linear fluorescents produce 60-90+ LPW. Fluorescent bulbs also last 10-20 times longer than incandescent bulbs! Another technological stride is Light Emitting Diodes. LEDs, are tiny light bulbs that do not have a filament to burn out, do not get especially hot, and are therefore very efficient. LEDs will play a big role in energy-saving light sources in the future. Gone are the old obstacles of the fluorescents. Fluorescents are now dimmable. Philips offers the Marathon, an energy saving, dimmable fluorescent bulb. Widely available to consumers these days are replacement bulbs, which are compact fluorescent bulbs that fit into the same socket as an incandescent bulb. Also being manufactured these days are dedicated fluorescent bulbs, which are pin based bulbs specifically made for fixtures that accept this type of bulb. The benefit of these fixtures is that you cannot use the energy-inefficient incandescent. The ballast for the dedicated fluorescent bulb is smaller and integral in the design, making them more consumer-friendly. The question David asks is: how do we get eco-lighting out of the granola legacy and into people’s bathrooms, kitchens and homes? Breaking the design imagery that fluorescent fixtures are ugly, lighting manufacturers such as Lightolier, American Fluorescent Corp., Kichler and Justice Design are producing a new design of efficiency in light fixtures that are attractive, interesting and getting closer to what people want. With his award-winning decorative eco-lighting company, Fire & Water, David Bergman has successfully tackled the limitations of efficient light sources by creating light fixtures that are not only energy efficient, but are made of sustainable and/or recycled materials as well. Some of these materials are recycled glass, recycled plastic, eco-resin, and a biocomposite of soy flour and recycled paper. ARCHITECTURE & INTERIORS Since most interior design projects in New York City consists of apartment renovations, replacing existing building infrastructure systems like HVAC is not feasible. Therefore, utilizing sustainable materials is the main focus and goal for an interiors project. In one example of David Bergman’s work, a modern and colorful kitchen, we see the use of cork flooring, concrete countertops, recycled glass tiles, eco resin panels, linoleum desktops, and low VOC paints and finishes. David’s interiors see past the legacy problems of sustainable design since it is good design at the same time; aesthetics are not compromised. He starts with design, then layers in the eco-design. FURNITURE, TEXTILES & HOME ACCESSORIES Said to have made green haute, Q Collection designs and sells sustainable home furniture, textiles and accessories to the trade. Stylish, high-end, detailed and handsome, their products combine design and high quality with materials that reduce or eliminate risks to human health and the environment. Their mission is “to provide furnishings that are better for you, your home and our planet”. Q Junior is their baby furniture and bedding line that has the health of baby and of environment in mind. According to the EPA, indoor air quality is now worse than outdoor air quality. Toxic chemicals that make up different interior home products and materials cannot be escaped and children are most susceptible. Concerned with how poor indoor air quality impacts health, Q Collection uses the purest and most environmentally-friendly materials available. Carcinogens such as formaldehyde, polyurethane and flame retardants have been totally eliminated from the furniture-making process by Q Collection. As an alternative to glues with formaldehyde, water-based adhesives are used instead. They use finishes and dyes that are non-toxic. Instead of using wood stains and finishes with polyurethane, which has been found to cause cancer, water-based and low VOC alternatives are used. Since polyurethane is also the base material found in foam used in upholstery, Q Collection alternatively uses natural latex foam with no polyurethane. Cotton, although a required material in upholstery, is the world’s most polluting crop. Addressing this issue, Q Collection uses organic cotton that is free of pesticides for their batting and flannel. As for their textiles, Q Collection fabrics are 100% biodegradable, using abaca, hemp, viscose (wool blend), and silk. They recapture their ‘waste stream’ of excess material by using it to create throw pillows, which creatively still look designed. Knowing that the world loses forest area the size of a football field every 2 seconds, Q Collection uses only certified woods that do not threaten the environment. Using woods certified by FSC (Forest Stewardship Council), which is the best standard for certified woods, Q Collection has narrowed their use of hardwoods to ash and maple. Since mahogany is over cultivated, Q Collection chooses not to use that popular wood. COSTS When asked about costs of sustainable design, both speakers concur that high-end, made-to-order pieces such as their furniture and lighting fixtures can be costly. A major component to this high cost is the intensive labor that goes into producing their product. The economy of scales is such that many of these sustainable design companies are small and young and their pieces are made one at a time. In interior design, contractors unfamiliar with green practices and sustainable materials, tend to price their costs higher. Another factor adding to the high costs is the materials. Since there is no standardization, these design companies must do their own research with scientists and the medical field. Another challenge is locating suppliers of sustainable materials, the issue of where raw materials are coming from, and the distances they must travel to get to the workshops and factories. FUTURE OF SUSTAINABLE DESIGN The good news is that there has been a tremendous shift in sustainable design in that it has caught the public eye. Mainstream magazines featuring articles on sustainable design are indicative that consumers are more accepting of the idea and practice. As more people demand and specify sustainable materials, the lower price points will become. As more designers and architects apply sustainable design, contractors will be trained and become more familiar with green materials. And fortunately, there are many green material suppliers increasing locally. Jesse Johnson believes that the demand of organic foods 10 to 15 years ago is where sustainable design is now. In 10 years’ time, demands for sustainable design will merge with the mainstream. Both speakers are not only confident with the path that sustainable design is heading, but they are leaders paving that path by creating notable designs that can be appreciated by everyone right now in the present. -Maria Sagbiacela, July 2006

April 19, 2006

Responsible Wood Alternatives: From Extraction to Production & Design – April 19, 2006

When: Wednesday, April 19th, 6:30-8pm Where: Hafele Showroom on Madison Park (25 E. 26th St.) Speakers:Tim Keating, Executive Director, Rain Forest Relief Bart Bettencourt, Bettencourt Green Building Products Tim Keating from Rainforest Relief and Bart Bettencourt from Bettencourt Green Building Supplies are teaming up for a lecture on responsible wood alternatives. Rainforest Relief works to end the loss of the world’s tropical and temperate rainforests and protect their human and non-human inhabitants by reducing demand for the products of rainforest logging, mining and agricultural conversion, through education, advocacy, research and action. Bettencourt Green Building Supplies is dedicated to providing quality green building materials to designers, architects, contractors and homeowners on the East Coast. Bettencourt provides elegant and appropriate alternatives to many of the environmentally damaging choices currently available in the industry. We’re embarrassed that a progressive metropolis like New York City is the largest consumer of tropical hardwoods in North America. To help spread the word about alternative wood materials and to remind people that our society, and our city, continues to support deforestation practices, we proudly hosted Tim Keating of Rainforest Relief, and Bart Bettencourt of Bettencourt Green Building Supplies. These speakers presented two ends of the sustainable wood spectrum: how the consumer demand for tropical hardwood is destroying our ecosystem, and how to identify and purchase eco-friendly alternatives in the area. Tim Keating’s work with Rainforest Relief is exhaustive, alarming, and something that more New Yorkers should be familiar with. Most of us don’t pay any attention to the mahogany doors at Barnes and Noble, or the benches, made from Brazilian walnut that we sit on in local parks. To meet the demand for these invaluable woods, importers are contributing to the decimation of tropical rainforests, and in turn, we are facing the most rapid mass extinction on earth. To give you some numbers, 50-90% of biodiversity exists exclusively in rainforests (50% being generous). We are destroying 2 ½ acres of rainforest per second, and about 400 species per day. The majority of that (70%) is due directly to logging and road construction to obtain wood for everything from truck flooring to pencils. At the rate we are going, all unprotected tropical rainforests will be wiped out within 40 years. That leaves 3% of the rainforest standing. Okay, so now that we’ve introduced you to a very sobering reality, we’d like to illuminate people like Bart Bettencourt, who design and sell sustainable wood options for us New Yorkers. Bart is at the helm of Scrapile, a company that designs awesome furniture comprised of scrap wood, and Bettencourt Green Building Supplies. The latter is a Brooklyn-based company that serves as a resource for cabinet, furniture, and flooring alternatives made out of bamboo, coconut palm, and reclaimed agricultural fibers. While you may conjure up images of grass mats when you think of ‘bamboo flooring’ (I did), the samples that Bart passed around were beautiful, dense, and felt just like wood. He mentioned that the majority of these materials cut, sanded, screwed, held up, joined, and reacted to finishes just like regular wood, too. Another excellent alternative is recycled plastic lumber, which is more durable, requires less maintenance, and is more environmentally friendly than wood products. Wood makes up much of our national waterfront infrastructure (think pilings, piers, and boardwalks), and has a relatively short lifespan, especially when immersed in water. Recent advanced-aging tests that found that recycled plastic lumber had no significant deterioration over the course of 50 years. If you’d like to see this material in action, visit the Tiffany Street Pier in the Bronx. If you’re not in the position to purchase these materials, you still have options. Salvage furniture off the street, or buy secondhand. And if you must, aim to buy wood that is domestic and certified by the Forest Stewardship Council. Most importantly, do your homework and choose to support companies that are environmentally friendly and responsible. -Shawna Michaud

March 1, 2004

Fumes and Formaldehyde

Since 2004, GreenHomeNYC has presented monthly articles on green building construction, renovations, and management in The Cooperator, a Yale Robbins newspaper serving 3,300 New York City cooperatives and condominiums. Fumes and Formaldehyde Taking Steps to Detox Your Building By Joshua Radoff Everyone knows the air in New York isn’t the best stuff in the world to breathe. But what most people don’t know is that the indoor environment is often more polluted and toxic than the world outdoors. In fact, a recent EPA study found that the indoor concentrations of 20 toxic compounds can be as much as 200 times higher compared to the relatively pristine urban outdoors. So let’s start with a basic – and, hopefully, obvious – principle: If it’s poisonous, carcinogenic, triggers asthma, or wreaks havoc on your nervous system, you probably don’t want it in your building. Seems like common sense, right? And yet most of the products we use to build and maintain our buildings are portable Superfund sites, making their way Trojan Horse-like, into our common and living spaces. The good news for building owners and managers is that once you know what to look for, keeping the toxins out is a relatively easy thing to do. Read on at The Cooperator Web Site.

February 20, 2004

Non-toxic Building Materials – February 19, 2004

Toxics, toxics, toxics. They are all around us, especially in our homes and offices, according to speakers Cameron Lory and Paul Novak at GreenHome NYC?s monthly forum, Non-toxic Building Materials. To a crowd of nearly 40 people at the Herman Miller Showroom, the speakers identified toxics in everyday materials and suggested ways to mitigate exposure to them. Cameron Lory is a green building specialist at Inform, an organization that partners with government agencies and private organizations to promote cost effective, innovative and environmentally responsible practices. Her specialty is chemical hazards prevention. During her presentation, she focused on lead, mercury, polychlorinated biophenyls (PCB) and arsenic, chemicals that are persistent, bioaccumulative, and toxic, which means they cause harm to humans and the ecosystem. Ninety-two percent of persistent, bioaccumulative, and toxic (PBT) chemicals leave manufacturing facilities through products shipped to consumers, not through emissions out of smokestacks. These include building products, such as HVAC components, lighting systems, textiles and furnishings, roofing, pipes, and interior finishes. Therefore, awareness of these chemicals and knowledge of alternatives is critical during the designing, construction, and maintenance phases and is emerging as an important component of green building standards. Mercury, for instance, can be found in thermostats, switches, gas and water flow meters, boilers, standing pilot lights, and other equipment. Ms. Lory suggests specifying mercury free systems when possible. Where unavailable, she stressed the importance of requiring mercury disclosure and ensuring proper disposal of the product at the end of its life. Mercury is also found in fluorescent, compact fluorescent and high intensity discharge lamps. However, use of these systems is essential for energy efficiency, and there are products with lower mercury content, such as Philips Alto lamps. For lighting, Ms. Lory recommends retrofitting old lighting systems with energy efficient technology, purchasing ?energy star? products, purchasing lamps with the lowest mercury content, and recycling spent lamps. Brominated flame-retardants also affect indoor air environments. Due to building codes and other fire standards, concentrations of brominated flame-retardants, which have a similar structure as PCBs, are rapidly increasing. The retardants are used on furniture, upholstery, drapes, and electronic products. To date, the best solution is to request disclosure and, when possible, alternatives. Audience members suggested some emerging alternatives, which are more popular in Europe. Hopefully legislation to outlaw certain types of brominated flame-retardants will lead to more sustainable technologies for fire prevention. Ms. Lory concluded her presentation with a passionate description of the hazards of Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC). Throughout the PVC life cycle, from manufacturing, product use, and disposal or destruction by fire, it releases some of the most toxic substances including dioxins, hexachlorobenzene, metal stabilizers, and phathalates. Products containing PVC are ubiquitous including resilient flooring, carpet backing, scrubbable floor coverings, shower curtains, acoustical ceiling tiles, roofing membranes, window and door frames, gutters, pipes, and, of course, siding. Luckily alternatives for some of these products are easy to find and can be found on the Inform website (www.informinc.org). Paul Novak, founder of Environmental Construction Outfitters (E.C.O.), offered more solutions for healthier buildings. E.C.O.?s mission is to provide people with building/interior design materials and home products that are environmentally friendly, safe, natural, recycled and sustainable. The company also strives to offer the means of attaining good indoor air quality in home and office, and especially, to assist chemically-sensitive people. E.C.O. makes available the highest quality sustainable products for developers, contractors, architects, and homeowners in four product categories: natural, sustainable, recycled, and healthy. Mr. Novak caries water-based, formaldahyde free, and ones that use non-solvent glues. After over 13 years in the environmental construction materials business, Mr. Novak has seen a significant increase in demand for these products. This is largely due to education through the internet and product and health warnings on the news. The majority of his customers are young families that are educated on the topic. When working with contractors, he stressed the importance of ensuring they use the materials correctly. One wrong decision, whether the glue or finishing, can eliminate the health benefits of the other material decisions. E.C.O. offers free phone consultation to discuss the concept of healthy buildings. Listing sustainable products in not sufficient since different people have different needs and sensitivities. However, E.C.O.?s product categories are listed on the website, http://www.EnvironProducts.com. Mr. Novak concluded his speech by presenting some of his favorite building materials. These include the following: Wall insulation made out of old jeans. The denim out performs fiberglass in R-rating and acoustics. Natural wools and fibers for carpeting. Nontoxic glues Natural cleaning agents Pre-consumer recycled rubber Bamboo, which is especially good for chemically sensitive people. Cork. However, due to the popularity of cork, which grows back on oak trees in seven to nine years, the supply has not been able to keep up with demand and, “the trees are taking a beating.” Sustainably harvested wood from Maine or felled lumber. During a question and answer period, the speakers spoke of Green Seal, costs, and legislation. Green Seal, similar to LEED, is a good start, according to Paul Novak, but it needs to be more discerning. As for the costs of non-toxic building materials, he estimates today that prices on average are three to five percent greater, however, a decade ago it was around 30 percent. The prices for the glues, paints, and wood are competitive, but his choice for insulation is twice as expensive due to the cost of shipping. Cameron Lory mentioned the importance of building standards, not just legislation to promote the use of healthier building materials. Both speakers did speak of emerging regulations in the region. Currently Westchester County (and soon in New Jersey), tax breaks are available for the use of products that are listed as sustainable alternatives. It is important to be careful when following these lists as they may contain materials that while more sustainable than the standard choice, are still toxic products. Please join us next month at the Hafele Showroom for the March forum on Energy Efficiency.

January 21, 2004

Sustainable Wood & Wood Alternatives – January 21, 2004

Tim Keating is co-founder and Executive Director of Rainforest Relief, a New York-based organization that works through education and direct-action campaigns to reduce the demand for wood products and materials. Tim has been an environmental activist since the age of 15. Stubby Warmbold is the owner of CitiLog, a company that uses a combination of salvaging/urban logging, horse logging methods and FSC Chain of Custody wood to produce products such as flooring, molding, timber framing, historical restorations, furniture and lumber.

January 15, 2003

SmartWood Certification Program – January 15, 2003

[Presentation] Bina Venkataraman of Rainforest Alliance presented RA’s SmartWood program. Bina’s notes: GREEN BUILDING: Resources for Sourcing and Specifying Certified Wood. [Presentation Topics Survey] We took a very simple, low-tech survey about topics for future presentations. The most popular of the 22 topics were: Green/Alternative Power Financial Incentives for Building Green Can I vote my way to a greener New York? Big Green Buildings: Conde Nast, 20 River Terrace and friends Green Building and Affordable Housing Green Roofs Solar Applications Write-ins included City Building/Zoning Codes and Green Building Market Trends. A surprise dud was the LEED Rating System and Wood Alternatives/Composite Building Materials. GREEN BUILDING: Resources for Sourcing and Specifying Certified Wood Certified Forest Products Council Website (www.certifiedwood.org) Description: The website provides a searchable database of suppliers and certifiers of FSC certified wood products. It also describes the criteria for certification and the process of incorporating certified products into building construction and design. Two basic resources for architects: Detailed information on how to specify and document use of certified wood products throughout construction process (‘Project Toolkit’) Market linkages for architects and clients to select supplies and a database of contact information of the suppliers Project Toolkit: A Manual for Architects (see http://www.certifiedwood.org/search-modules/CertForests.aspThe website provides a free download of this manual, which consists of guidelines for specifying certified wood used in a particular project. Project Toolkit specifies how to document and search for suppliers of FSC certified products. It provides sample specification language, as well as sample invoices and documentation spreadsheets. It also details how to bid for materials when the supply of FSC certified wood is limited and provides a bid compliance form. A case study is included that describes in narrative form how certified wood products can be incorporated into a project. Market Linkages: Searching for SuppliersThe website allows online searches for sources of FSC certified products. You can search by location (anywhere in the world) and also by region where wood is harvested (this may help meet the criteria of local wood quantities for LEED certification). Location searches require you to specify level on the supply chain: woodworker, retailed, primary or secondary manufacturer, distributor, forest owner or manager, broker/agent. Although currently no specific search for ‘architect’ is included in this list, architects have the ability to search for suppliers on behalf of their clients, or can direct the client to this site.The site also has product type searches, where the architect can choose from categories such as decking, furniture, housewares, chips, paper, flooring. When one type is selected, a list of suppliers is produced. For each supplier, you are given complete contact information, a supplier profile, and a full product listing. Nevertheless, this listing does not reflect current inventories, but is rather the entire range of FSC certified products and species the vendors could supply. For current availability, the suppliers must be directly contacted. An example of the outcome of a search: If you select Engineered Wood Products from the listed product types, a list of 62 certified companies in 22 countries comes up. (The category includes I-Joists and I-Beams, Trusses, Laminated Wood Products). Another example: If you select Doors, 138 certified suppliers in 28 companies comes up. You can also narrow the search to accessories, interior or exterior doors, or specialty doors. For each supplier company, you can access a profile describing size, product line, and other relevant information. Finally, the website also allows searches by certifier (for example, Smartwood). The profiles of each certifier are provided, and the architect can compare and contrast the criteria used by various certifiers before searching the database of suppliers. US Green Building Council Website (www.usgbc.org/LEED) Description: Through the LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Rating System, USGBC certifies buildings (not the individual products used to construct them) based on voluntary, consensus-based national standards for assessing building performance and adherence to sustainability goals. Two areas are of relevant interest to architectural community: LEED Rating System Manual, which describes certification process and criteria in order for building projects to qualify Workshops and Conferences that architects can attend to share insight on projects and learn about emerging green technologies and materials LEED Rating System ManualCertified Wood provides one point under the ‘Materials and Resources’ category of qualifying criteria for LEED certification. (p.29 of Rating System Manual: https://www.usgbc.org/LEED/Project/project_list.asp ) A minimum of 50% wood-based materials must be FSC certified, and documentation is required of builders that specifies sources and quantifies certified wood based materials.In addition, points can be earned for materials harvested, recovered, or extracted within 500 miles. This encourages the use of locally grown wood products. (Must account for 50% of regional materials used). Points can also be earned for salvaged or refurbished materials used. (p.25). The rating system awards up to 69 points for a range of criteria including sustainable sight, stormwater management, indoor environmental quality, recycled content, use of renewable energy, water efficiency, and erosion control. The Manual specifies those criteria required for certification. Basic certification requires 26 to 32 points, whereas advanced ratings require additional points up to 69. Workshops and ConferencesThe USGBC provides workshops nationwide for engineers, architects, and the building industry. The workshops train professionals in the LEED rating system and accreditation process and describe methods of incorporating green building strategies. Workshop training also outlines the benefits of green building and certification. Attendees receive discounted resources on sustainable building design.The First Annual USGBC Green Building Expo and Conference will take place this November 13th thru 15th in Austin, Texas. Major topics will include: leading green technologies, educational programs on the benchmarks of sustainability, products available on the market, and financing of projects. Areas of emphasis will include: water use, energy, materials, indoor environmental quality, biophelia, and health and productivity. (See detailed schedule: http://www.usgbc.org/Expo/Schedule/usgbc_expo_schedule.pdf) Web pages of Interest USGBC: Overview of LEED certification process https://www.usgbc.org/LEED/Project/certprocess.asp Link to LEED Rating System Manual, with description of requirements http://www.usgbc.org/LEED/publications.asp#LEEDRS Description of workshops available to help architects master LEED process and learn more about green design and construction http://www.usgbc.org/LEED/training_workshops_main.asp Calendar of Training Workshops for LEED certification process http://www.usgbc.org/Events/events_training_calendar.asp Upcoming Conferences on Green Building and the LEED rating system http://www.usgbc.org/Events/events_conference_calendar.asp Agenda for First Annual USGBC Green Building Conference: Austin, TX Nov.13-15, 2002 http://www.usgbc.org/Expo/Schedule/usgbc_expo_schedule.pdf List of LEED certified projects https://www.usgbc.org/LEED/Project/project_list.asp List of contacts for Green Builders/Sources for Materials http://www.greenbuilder.com/general/GreenDBs.html Forest Stewardship Council’s Principles and Criteria for Certified Wood http://fscus.org/html/standards_policies/principles_criteria/index.html CERTIFIED FOREST PRODUCTS COUNCIL: Guidelines for Specifying Certified Wood For Architects and Download Site for ‘Project Toolkit’ http://www.certifiedwood.org/search-modules/CertForests.asp Case study of Certified Wood Specified Building Project http://www.certifiedwood.org/education-modules/case-studies/strawberry-mansion.htm Online Directory for FSC Certified Forest Product Suppliers/Materials (lists by product type) http://www.usgbc.org/Expo/Schedule/usgbc_expo_schedule.pdf Online Search Directory for FSC Certified Suppliers (by location around world) http://www.certifiedwood.org/search-modules/SupplierSearch.ASP Online Search Directory for FSC Certified Products by Certifier http://www.certifiedwood.org/search-modules/ApprovedCertifiers.asp