Green Globes has seven areas of assessment. Five are similar to USGBC’s program, but two additional areas are covered under this program, including Project Management and Emissions.
Because these systems do not rate products but instead measure a building team’s performance in each of these categories, it can be difficult for manufacturers to figure out how its products fit into this program. The general rule is to report how the product performs within the appropriate categories of LEED or Green Globes.
Some areas relevant to the self-storage industry could include the product’s contributions to the overall recycled content of the building, the ways in which the product assists with energy efficiency, or hard-scaped areas, such as the parking areas and driveways, are pervious.
Typically, there are consultants who perform the assessment of a product’s sustainable attributes, or the manufacturer has its technical director handle the task. Any claims resulting from an assessment must be verifiable by a third-party testing lab or separate certifying organization.
Whole support industries have sprouted up to assist with this endeavor. In addition to the rise of green building-rating tools, there are additional developments that should lead everyone to the conclusion that green building is coming to self-storage. Standard 189, an important initiative from the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers and several industry partners, is attempting to create a translation of LEED into building code, which can then be used as a model for codes across the country.
This initiative, along with the momentum generated by the NGOs green building-rating tools and government regulators, signals that the tipping point has come. There will come a time in the near future when sustainable building will be standard practice for self-storage.
Paul Nutcher, CSI CDT, LEED AP, is president of Green Apple Group and the communications director for the Central Florida Chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council. To reach him, call 407.517.4748; e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org; visit www.greenappleconsult.com.