Conference Proceedings

White House Summit on Federal Sustainable Buildings
White House Conference Center
January 24-25, 2006

Day 1: Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Welcoming Remarks -- Ed Piñero, Federal Environmental Executive

Opening Plenary: Business Case for Federal Sustainability

Demonstrating Federal Leadership in High Performance and Sustainable Buildings -- Bryan Hannegan, Chief of Staff, White House Council on Environmental Quality

Federal Building Performance Impact on Productivity and Health Effects -- Vice Admiral Richard H. Carmona, U.S. Surgeon General

The Surgeon General spoke to the key issues raised during the 2005 Surgeon General's Workshop on Healthy Indoor Environment. According to a recent study, Americans spend 85–95% of time indoors. So while it is important to be cognizant of and concerned of outdoor pollutants affecting the environment, equal emphasis must also be placed on the long-overlooked issue of indoor environment. To help determine the extent that the indoor environment has on the health of our nation and to provide critical information on this subject, the US Surgeon General’s Workshop on Healthy Indoor Environment was convened in January 2005. The three major goals for the workshop were (1) to identify relevant scientific data that establish a basis for assessing and interpreting indoor environment hazards; (2) to identify research needs and areas where scientific information is lacking or inconclusive; and (3) to establish common goals for implementing measures that are known to be effective for improving indoor environmental quality.

Improving Sustainable Performance in Federal Buildings-- David L. Winstead, Commissioner, Public Buildings Service, U.S. General Services Administration

Signing Ceremony: Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on Federal Leadership in High Performance and Sustainable Buildings

Advancing a Federal Sustainable Building Agenda -- Luis A. Luna, Assistant Administrator, Office Of Administration and Resources Management, EPA

We know that sustainable or "green" buildings are important for the environment, improve the productivity of our workforce, and reduce the cost of operating our facilities. The Federal Government has been and should be a leader in sustainable facilities. It just makes sense that the nation’s largest single landlord should be an example -- if not the best example -- of sustainability in the design, maintenance and operations of buildings. Sound sustainable building practices should promote the effective and efficient use of our facilities. The business case for sustainable practices should direct us to the social, economic and environmental benefits. So, how might we move forward to advance a Federal Sustainable Building Agenda?

Working toward more sustainable Federal Communities – William McDonough, William McDonough + Partners

In the last twenty years green buildings have shown higher value propositions to the point where they are becoming quite common. The reason is simple: green development strategies make life better while different projects may evidence different kinds of benefits – easier permitting, reduced operating costs, higher productivity, etc. taking all of these benefits together, it has been obvious to many public and private enterprises that green building strategies is the obvious choice. Mr. McDonough discussed how the “green building community” has been building over the last twenty years. He framed both the context and the content and describe projects ranging from the first “green” office in New York in 1985 through buildings that make more energy than they need to operate, an auto plant with a giant green roof and a revolutionary heating and cooling system, office buildings with dramatic productivity gains and even whole new cities for China based on “cradle to cradle” design principles.

Session 1: Transforming the Business of Building
Session Chair: Steven Winter, Steven Winter Associates

Topic: Environmentally Responsible Construction in the Private Sector (Complete .ZIP file, including animations 70MB)
Speaker: Douglas Durst, The Durst Organization

This presentation will address the private sector efforts to become sustainable. A sustainable building, or environmentally responsible building is based on efficiency, and the environment is the lens through which efficiency is examined. It is efficiency for the occupants, efficiency in the use of resources, efficiency in operation, and efficiency in the design and construction process. Since each building is different, each building must go through a new process to design and build it.

Topic: Follow the Money
Speaker: Bill Browning, Browning + Bannon, LLC

Green building partnerships between the Federal Government and the private sector have led to both environmental improvement and savings for taxpayers. Some of these efforts include the ongoing Greening of the White House, the Pentagon Renovation, work with the General Services Administration and the National Parks. Federal involvement was crucial in the development of the US Green Building Council’s LEED rating system. LEED has been the catalyst to move green building into the commercial real estate market. These public/private partnerships have helped to make the United States a leader in improving the environmental performance of the built environment.

Session 2: The Dollars And Sense of Sustainability
Session Chair: Dr. Teresa Pohlman, Tenant Activities Group Leader, Pentagon Renovation Program

Topic: Sustainable Design Innovation at GSA
Speaker: Don Horn, Director, Sustainable Design, Office of Applied Science, U.S. General Services Administration

GSA is known as a leader in implementing energy conservation and sustainable design. Innovative workplace solutions and leasing solicitations have produced exemplary Federal buildings featuring sustainable design solutions. Case studies will be presented to illustrate challenges and successes of implementing sustainable design principles within Federal budgets.

Topic: Energy Efficiency, The Key to High Performance Buildings
Speaker: Jean Lupinacci, Director ENERGY STAR Commercial and Industrial Branch, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

This presentation will discuss the three critical elements that ensures a high performance building will be energy efficient: Establishing a whole building energy performance target that accounts for all intended energy uses that and is designed to earn ENERGY STAR where applicable; requiring that building components exceed the energy code; and establishing a system to measure and compare energy use with the design target during and through the first year of operation. It will also offer practical advice to achieve these goals.

Session 3: Health and Productivity Benefits of Green Buildings
Session Chair: Ken Sandler, Co-Chair, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Green Building Workgroup

Topic: Health Impacts of the Indoor Environment
Speaker: Dr. John D. Spengler, Harvard School of Public Health

Incorporating occupant health and productivity into criteria for “green” buildings will be an important first step towards the design and operation of truly “high performing” structures. Current guidelines address health-related concerns in only a superficial way. Furthermore, organizations leading efforts to establish “green” building criteria are inherently restricted in adopting a more comprehensive approach. Leadership and research at the state and federal levels are needed now in the United States or the criteria for “healthy indoor environments” will be prescribed by leadership in Japan and the European Union.

Topic: Productivity and Economic Impacts of Buildings
Speaker: William Fisk, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

The specifications for sustainable buildings normally encompass a number of measures intended to improve indoor air quality (IAQ). These measures include adherence to ventilation and thermal comfort standards, reduced indoor sources of volatile organic compounds, restrictions in tobacco smoking, use of natural ventilation in place of air conditioning, and commissioning of building systems. If these measures, as implemented in sustainable buildings, significantly improve IAQ, we can anticipate concomitant enhancements in the work performance and health of the occupants and associated economic benefits.

Day 2: Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Welcoming Remarks -- Ed Piñero, Federal Environmental Executive

Plenary 2: Greening Federal Buildings

Planning And Budgeting For Effective Sustainable Building Performance -- Clay Johnson, Deputy Director for Management, Office of Management & Budget

Sustainable Design/Green Buildings in the Department of Defense -- Phil Grone, Deputy Under Secretary of Defense, Installations & Environment

The Department of Defense has embraced sustainable building design as just one component of a comprehensive approach to asset management. With over 517,000 buildings and structures valued at over $650 billion, the quality of our infrastructure directly affects our training and readiness. A sustainable approach to infrastructure represents a shift from the traditional focus on first-time construction costs to a focus on life-cycle requirements. Through sustainable building design, we can better conserve valuable resources, protect the environment, and improve the quality of the workplace. DoD's sustainable building design program also reflects a long-term commitment to renewable energy, environmental stewardship, awareness and conservation, and continued partnerships with academia, industry and government.

Federal Sustainability: Challenges and Opportunities -- David Anderson, Associate Director, Resource Programs, Office of Management & Budget

Special Announcement: Environment, Energy and Transportation Management Score Cards

Sustainable Design/Green Buildings in the Department of Interior -- Lynn Scarlett, Deputy Secretary, U.S. Department of Interior

There is a long history of sustainable building design in American. Many examples are cared for now by the National Park Service (NPS). Our heritage assets reflect many sustainable features that were incorporated by necessity. It is our task now to find our way back, to relearn how to use some of these more tried-and-true sustainable technologies as well as to innovate and incorporate new ones. Recent DOI new construction projects exemplify these efforts to achieve greater efficiencies in resource use, including the Baca/Dlo'ay azhi Community School, NPS’s Carl T. Curtis Midwest Regional Headquarters, BLM’s Escalante Science Center at Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Rhode Island National Wildlife Refuge Headquarters/Kettle Pond Visitor Center, and the Sandstone Visitor Center at New River Gorge National River. DOI bureaus have gained much experience using green building benchmarks but, as yet, have not found one that is applicable as an agency standard, due to the unique and diverse nature of DOI’s building portfolio. DOI plans to develop a Departmental sustainable building policy for the full scope of buildings management activities (operations, maintenance, repair, renovation, and new construction), possibly using environmental management systems as a framework for managing continuous progress toward sustainability goals.

Session 1:Results-oriented Government: The Executive Branch Management Scorecard
Session Chair: Cynthia Vallina, Procurement Analyst, Energy Division, Office of Management and Budget

Topic: Understanding the Score Card Metrics and Rating
Speaker: Robert L. Sandoli, Program Examiner,Office of Management and Budget

Executive Orders and legislation established goals for improved Federal performance in energy, transportation and environmental management. The Federal government on the whole has met many of the goals, but individual agency performance has varied. To systematically assess each agency’s performance and ultimately improve it, the Office of Management and Budget has developed new management scorecards in the areas of energy, transportation, and the environment. The new scorecard structure resembles the structure of scorecards that OMB uses to assess agency performance in implementing the President’s Management Agenda. The presentation will provide a detailed review of performance criteria on the new scorecards and discuss the standards for success.

Topic: Demonstrating success: Performance and Results
Speaker: Olga M. Dominguez, Deputy Assistant Administrator, Office of Management Systems, National Aeronautics and Space Administration

NASA has ranked among the top performing agencies over a period of years in each Executive Branch Management Scorecards area. This presentation will review NASA’s approach to implementing the Executive Order requirements, some noteworthy results achieved, and their overall Scorecard performance in each area. It will also explain how sustainability principles are being introduced to mission program and project managers through the concept of strategic risk management.

Session 2: Implementation: Getting From Policy To Success
Session Chair: Beverly Dyer, Program Manager, Interagency Sustainability Working Group, Federal Energy Management Program, U.S. Department of Energy

Topic: Implementing a Sustainable Building Program
Speaker: Sam Hunter, Assistant Commissioner, Office of Applied Science, U.S. General Services Administration

GSA began its Sustainable Design Program in 1999, preceding the issuance of Executive Order 13123. While GSA had pursued environmental and energy initiatives for many years prior, the Sustainable Design Program was a holistic, concerted approach to the siting, design, construction and operation of its facilities. The three-prong strategy consisted of: Top-down leadership; working-level support (guidance, information, training and creation of an intra-agency Build Green network); and amending key documents and processes. With the goal of all capital projects to be LEED certified, GSA has achieved more certified designations and projects registered than any other organization.

Topic: Best Practices And Strategies For Managers
Speaker: Rick Khan, Program Manager, Federal Energy Management Program, U.S. Department of Energy

This presentation will discuss why the Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP), with its focus on Energy, is interested in Sustainability, and how FEMP can help implement the requirements of the MOU. He will present some lessons learned on Integrated Design from FEMP Projects, and provide information on FEMP information and services that are available to Federal Agencies.

Session 3: Budget and Procurement: Leading the Way
Session Chair: Linda Mesaros, Mesaros Associates, Inc.

Topic: How to procure and fund Sustainable Buildings
Speaker: Kym Murphy, Senior Vice President of Environmental Policy, The Walt Disney Company

The Walt Disney Company is one of the world leaders in implementing sustainable practices. This presentation addresses strategies, successes and opportunities associated with green building and sustainable design at Disney. The discussion includes descriptions of several resources and tools that the Company has developed for its in-house managers, architects and designers. It will also share Disney's top sustainable design priorities identified as critical project elements.

Topic: An Integrated Team: The Key to Successful Sustainability
Speaker: Robert Cox, Director of Engineering and Technical Services Division, Pentagon

DOD’s Washington Headquarters Services implements a wide range of sustainable practices into its installations. It includes the use of contracts for design, construction, building commissioning, custodial, O&M and an OMB Circular A-76 competition. Their success is the result of an integrated team approach that incorporates technical, procurement and financial management involvement early in the planning process and as part of on-going process of continuous improvement.

Closing Plenary:

Making Sustainable Federal Buildings A Reality
Speaker: Richard Fedrizzi, President, CEO & Founding Chairman, U.S. Green Building Council

The Federal government has been at the forefront of the sustainable building movement since its inception, providing resources, pioneering best practices and engaging multiple Federal agencies in the mission of transforming the built environment. This presentation will address the progress of this important sector, highlight some significant refinements to the LEED rating system, including its just-launched online accessibility, and discuss how USGBC’s role in supporting and advancing sustainable Federal buildings continues to be a top priority.

For questions/additional information, please contact:
Juan D. Lopez
Office of the Federal Environmental Executive
lopez.juan@ofee.gov       202-564-5214

Last Updated: April 25, 2006