Blog: March, 2011

March 21, 2011
Alliance News green building California Sustainability Alliance

We have released The Competitive Edge: Commercial Green Building in California, a video designed to help viewers understand what characteristics green buildings have, and the types of green building measures most effective in the state of California.

The video features successful case studies from Adobe Systems and Thomas Properties Group, and is designed to educate a wide audience - including policymakers, governmental agencies, property managers, developers, lenders/investors, architects, engineers, building owners and tenants.

"Understanding what measures can be taken to reduce energy use in commercial buildings is critical, and further underscored by the recently announced federal initiative to achieve a 20 percent reduction in commercial energy use by 2020, Craig McDonald, Navigant Managing Director explained." According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, energy used by commercial and industrial buildings costs more than $200 billion per year and accounts for nearly half of all energy consumption in the U.S.

The video highlights the green building efforts of Thomas Properties Group, Inc., one of the pioneer real estate companies developing and operating green buildings in California and a 2008 Sustainability Showcase Award winner. Spotlighted properties include City National Plaza Building in Los Angeles and the Joe Serna Jr. Cal/EPA Headquarters Building in Sacramento which, through green building measures, each save close to $1.4 million in annual operating costs.

The Competitive Edge: Commercial Green Building in California




March 14, 2011
Alliance News sustainability showcase California Sustainability Alliance
Craig McDonald, Alliance Program Director, introduces the Ceremony
Santa Clara Valley Water District's Sarah Young accepting the award
2009's grand prize winner, Santa Monica's Brenden McEneaney
Energy Resource Center
Attendees touring the ERC Facility

This year’s Sustainability Showcase Awards luncheon provided an intimate forum for thought leaders and industry experts to share ideas, network and celebrate the accomplishments of this year’s award winners.

The Sustainability Showcase Awards, now in its third year, recognizes successful sustainability policies, programs, practices and technologies implemented by leading organizations.

2010 Sustainability Showcase Awards Winners

Balboa Park Cultural Partnership (Commercial Buildings)

Eden Housing (Multifamily Housing)

City of Chula Vista (Local Government)

Santa Clara Valley Water District (Water Districts)

Honorable Mentions

EAH Housing (Multifamily Housing)

City of Tulare (Local Government)

The honored recipients are making truly impressive strides in the integration of sustainable practices into their broader missions, and reaping environmental, economic, and social benefits as well as positive results impacting their bottom lines. 

For example, when Eden Housing builds a new green multifamily development providing affordable housing units near public transit, a more sustainable economy is created.  When the City of Chula Vista reaches educates residents about energy efficiency, the engagement and empowerment helps to build a stronger community.  When the Balboa Parks Cultural Partnership hosts a monthly lunch meeting designed to foster the exchange of ideas and sharing of best practices amongst its member institutions the resulting building efficiencies help to reduce our dependence on fossil fuels.  When the City of Tulare invests in fuel cells and solar panels to supply energy to its regional wastewater treatment facility, the community saves energy and improves its water quality.   And, when the Santa Clara Valley Water District engages its customers through its Climate Change Portal —one of the most popular sites for internet searches about Climate Change – the public receives access to important information about the potential impacts of greenhouse gas emissions and the urgent need to continue mitigation efforts.

This year’s luncheon event included presentations to this year’s award winners as well asa “sneak preview” of a video series featuring the City of Santa Monica–last year’s Sustainability Showcase Awards Grand Prize winner – garnering rave reviews by this year’s luncheon attendees.

The Showcase Awards luncheon featured some of its own best practices in sustainable event planning by hosting the event at a LEED® certified building, selecting awards made from recycled glass, serving local and organic catering options, and asking attendees to return their nametag badges for re-use.

Following the luncheon, attendees and award recipients toured the Energy Resource Center, SoCalGas’ award-winning building showcasing innovations in resource-efficient designs, materials and equipment.  The Energy Resource Center was certified for LEED® New Construction v.1 in 2000 and re-certified under LEED® Existing Buildings Operations & Maintenance in 2009.