SOURCE: Green Building Initiative

Green Building Initiative

December 06, 2011 14:43 ET

Veterans Affairs Awards Contract to Green Building Initiative for Green Globes® Certification

US-Based Nonprofit to Certify 189 Hospital Facilities for Sustainability on 11 Campuses

WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwire - Dec 6, 2011) - The Green Building Initiative (GBI), a nonprofit organization dedicated to the acceleration of sustainable building practices, was recently awarded a contract with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to certify 189 hospitals, long term care facilities, outpatient clinics and medical offices on eleven campuses across the country using the Green Globes® Continual Improvement of Existing Buildings (CIEB) environmental rating and assessment tool.

GBI staff previously provided training to VA facilities management personnel to conduct web-enabled, on-line environmental surveys on 175 buildings. The self-evaluations resulted in fairly significant scores; therefore, the VA expanded their contract to include Green Globe certifications on eleven campuses across the country. This represents the largest coordinated deployment of the certifications in the federal sector. Green Globe Assessors are currently evaluating the buildings and should complete the process by January 2012.

The Green Globes CIEB and hospital-specific CIEB Healthcare certification programs help facility managers establish performance baselines, best practices and certification for operations and maintenance of a building in the environmental assessment areas of energy, water, resource management and emissions and pollution. The fully interactive, web-enabled tool also allows facility personnel to measure, document, and improve the sustainability of a building over time. Read more about CIEB Healthcare.

"We continue to take steps to assess and reduce our environmental impact," said Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki. "Ensuring the sustainability of our facilities across the country gives us energy efficient buildings to accomplish our primary mission - serving Veterans with the best care."

This ambitious certification follows a 2009 pilot project by the VA in which 21 hospitals across the US were assessed and certified using the Green Globes system. After completion, it became apparent that complexities, regulations and demand for services associated to healthcare facilities, Green Globes CIEB needed to encompass an assessment questionnaire that was related specifically to healthcare buildings. To assist in this necessary requirement the Green Globes CIEB Healthcare system used on this current program was launched.

Erin Schaffer, Vice President of the Green Building Initiative for Federal Outreach, says, "Third party assessment and certification with Green Globes illustrates the VA's commitment to measure and reduce the impact of their buildings on the environment, while saving staff time and money because Green Globes is one of the most practical and expedient certifications systems available in the market."

For more information about the prior certification of 21 VA hospitals around the country please access the case study: The Portland VA Achieves 3 Green Globes (http://www.thegbi.org/assets/case_study/VA-Case-Study.pdf).

THE GREEN BUILDING INITIATIVE (GBI) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization whose mission is to accelerate the adoption of building practices that result in energy-efficient, healthier and environmentally sustainable buildings by promoting credible and practical green building approaches for residential and commercial construction. GBI is the exclusive U.S. licensee of Green Globes®, a revolutionary green building guidance and assessment program that offers an effective, practical and affordable way to advance the overall environmental performance and sustainability of commercial buildings. www.thegbi.org

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