Tags: BREEAM, Bucharest, Certification, Green Building Council, green homes, LEED, Living Building Challenge, Romania Green Building Council, Sustainable Construction, Training
At the end of March we had the great pleasure of having Elena Rastei in Bucharest – Sustainability Researcher at the Institute for Eco-Innovation |LEED & BREEAM Specialist at EcoVision Consulting
Elena Rastei is an environmentalist and sustainability specialist with over four years of expertise in green building certification systems and resource efficiency at both national and international levels. Some of her current LEED and BREEAM projects include Studium Green Campus, Romania Green Building Council -offices in Bucharest and Cluj Napoca, Vision and De’Longhi Romania.
The course lasted one day and the goal was to explain and educate the participants in the international voluntary certification for green buildings buildings.
Some of the topics discussed by Elena are:
– How to become LEED , BREAM or Living Building Challenge assessor (what are this certifications).
– Assessment Procedures
– Comparison between LEED and BREAM
– Reviews for communities (less known in Romania)
– Case Studies and practical exercises
Tags: BREEAM, Certification, green renovation, LEED, Living Building Challenge, Romania Green Building Council, sustainability, Training
Sustainable Landscape Design and Installation is an important component for building projects seeking internationally recognized green buildings certifications such as ‘Living Building Challenge‘, LEED, BREEAM or DGNB certificates. Topics include: site analysis, drainage and water management, sustainable design considerations, plant selection, landscape installation and maintenance.
Mrs. Negru Perrey is an active member at the Romania Green Building Council, the San Diego chapter of the USGBC and the European Chapter of the World Green Building Council, where she conducts ‘Sustainable Exterior and Landscape Design’ workshops for architects, developers, engineers and other stakeholders of the building industry. Recently she has designed the exterior and landscape for the first ‘Living Building Challenge‘ project in Europe – a library renovation in Cacica/Romania, which is lead and financed by the RoGBC and its member companies.
Tags: BREEAM, Green Building Council, Green Building Projects, LEED, RoGBC, sustainability, sustainable architecture, Sustainable Construction, Sustainable Development
Carlo Battisti has 20 years of experience in several Italian construction firms performing multiple roles. He has worked for Habitech, Distretto Tecnologico Trentino (Italy) – the founding member of Green Building Council Italy – as Program Manager of the Business Unit on Sustainable Materials and Construction Products. He launched the web site ‘green map’; the first Italian on-line database of LEED compliant products.
The workshop provided an overview and case studies about historic building, about main problems and opportunities in sustainable renovation of historic building, a new rating system for historic building sustainable refurbishment assessment and others interesting subjects related to historical renovations.
Tags: comments, Energy Certification, Energy Efficiency, Events, Green Building, Green Building Council, LEED, Legislative Outreach, Romania Green Building Professional, Sustainable Development, Training
Invited to Bucharest on the occasion of the Green Building Professionals training platform organized by the Romanian Green Building Council, Eric Johnson gave us an exclusive interview where he discussed the development of green building trends, the challenges of managing such a building and the role of the public authorities in the development of this field.
by Diana Şerban
What do you think are the causes for the slower adoption of green building techniques in certain Eastern European countries?
Like in every new field, people are trying to find their way. I believe that they are relatively skeptical, for now, as they have a false impression on the amount of additional costs and they believe that hard work is necessary in order to make this idea profitable on the long term. I think that presently more and more concentrated efforts are being put into finding the right path for this new field.
You are one of the founders of the Czech Republic GBC. How well is the concept of green buildings understood in your country and what are the next steps for a complete development of the field?
I can tell you that all the owners of standard buildings are interested in obtaining a green certification for these constructions, regardless of its type. There are not many such buildings certified, but I believe that gradually their number will start to expand. At the beginning of the financial crisis, everybody wanted to be „green”, to prove that their products where good because they where green, and now I realize this is becoming more and more a strict criteria for the client. I know major developers that said that when you want to sell a building, you will not sell it for much unless it has a green certification. In four years, the Czech Green Building Council has had an impressive activity. We started with 13 certified buildings and we now have almost 100 or more. So even during the crisis we managed to attract enough members.
What does the management of a green building require in addition to a conventional building?
I think that the short answer is that one needs to establish clear objectives and make sure that everyone knows and respects them on a long term, doing what they are meant to do. It is important to know that the work is never the same, every day one learns something new.
Do you think that more human resources are needed for the administration of such a building?
I don’t think more people are needed, but more efficiency. Surely at least one person is required to overlook the whole process. And I don’t believe experience is necessarily required, but the enthusiasm for what you are doing.
What is the most difficult and what is the easiest aspect to promote as a project manager for a green building?
I think that no one would ever say that they don’t want to rent a space in a green building. The additional costs are usually the ones that scare the clients. I believe that when you have a building that is self-sustained in terms of energy and water, these costs will easily be recovered. The most difficult is to convince people not to smoke inside the building or do other simple things that they are usually reluctant to.
Do you believe that the governmental factor has a decisive role in the development of such a trend in Europe? What additional regulations would be necessary at an European level for the encouragement of the green building trend?
I am the advocate of a free market. I am not necessarily delighted by the regulations imposed by the state. For example, the American Government adopted the LEED standard for most of their public buildings and I believe that this is indeed a lead that other states should follow. I feel that these initiatives get stronger if the people engage in them voluntarily. However, I believe that the Governments should keep working on taxes and eventually adopt green certification standards for their buildings in order to encourage private institutions to follow.
Are there currently any public buildings in Europe certified as green buildings?
Yes. I think there are a few in Italy. There are definitely in the U.K., as they underwent a special development in this direction. Besides these two countries, I couldn’t name other examples in Europe.
How do you appreciate the development of green buildings for the next 20 years in Europe, compared to USA, for example? Will there be any differences, or does the trend follow a standardization of the field world-wide?
I believe there are a few differences. Europe relies more on Governments, while the U.S. puts more accent on the markets. So there will be differences in this sense, but generally we will have the same objectives. Even though apparently we are going in different directions, we will finally reach the same place. This field will develop more and more, people will begin to cooperate, to have better and better ideas and where there is a network of good ideas… for example if someone in Romania has a good idea, maybe someone in the U.S. will put it into good practice. It will all amount to sharing the information we have.
What is your strongest argument when convincing a client to build green?
I don’t think there is one sole argument because clients are different and they have different reasons to build green. Generally I try to convince my customers that it is a good business decision. It is the best thing to do in order to consume less energy, to build a solid reputation and to have a quality project.
Eric Johnson is a specialist in the planning, cost management and delivery of the green development and promotion projects, LEED AP and BREEAM Assessor.
Tags: BREEAM, conference, Energy Efficiency, Green Building, Green Building Council, green buildings project management, LEED, Legislation, Romania Green Building Council, Sustainable Construction, Sustainable Development
On the 8th of August, Romania Green Building Council organized the Managing Green Building Project workshop, in Bucharest, a comprehensive insight into the key principles of sustainable construction.
We were privileged to have Eric Johnson among us, a consultant specialized in planning, cost management, and delivery of green commercial development projects. Eric demonstrated the importance of management quality, sharing from his vast experience gained as a LEEP AP and BREEAM Assessor and involvement in numerous international committees of experts.
Among the objective, the course tried to give a full definition of an integrated project management, identify the requirements and challenges posed, as well as the assessment tools and strategies needed to successfully deliver high performance building projects, aiming to increasing profitability through streamlined management and planning practices.
The 30 participants enjoyed an interactive training, the informative sessions were interspersed with case studies and teamwork, which helped them successfully achieve the objectives. Also, they identified the most appropriate ways of implementing best business practices for the management of sustainable buildings.
We believe that raising public awareness about the use of assessment tools and adopting an integrated project management, will help the future development in this area.
Event location at the Cervantes Institute was provided by our partners AECOM, which was the perfect setting for out courses and we would like to use this opportunity and Thank them!
For more pictures visit our Facebook page.
The Establishing of the Regional Cluster for Sustainable Urban Development „Green Building& Development„August 13, 2013 at 1:44 pm | Posted in Events, General | Leave a comment
Tags: conference, Energy Efficiency, Events, Green Building, LEED, Legislation, Legislative Outreach, Regional Cluster, Sustainable Construction
The Establishing of the Regional Cluster for Sustainable Urban Development „Green Building & Development„
On the initiative of the Center for Technological Transfer CENTI Cluj Napoca, a new step was taken in the direction of the development of Romanian-Hungarian business relations in the field of green energy, in order to secure a sustainable and clean future.
During the 2nd and 3rd of July 2013 an event dedicated to the Use of Green Energy Sources for a Sustainable and Clean Future in Romania and Hungary took place in Târgu Mureș, consisting of a conference that hosted specialists from both countries, business meetings between companies based both in Romania and Hungary and a study visit to the companies active in the field of sustainable energy in Covasna County. The event was dedicated primarily to companies working in the green energy sector, yet it can be considered a model of good practice in international cooperation for other regions and industries as well.
During the two day conference, a significant moment was the signing of the Collaboration Protocol regarding the establishing of the first Regional Cluster for Sustainable Urban Development „Green Building& Development”. It will act as an organisation that enables the cooperation between the economic field, local public authorities and research institutes, looking to align and to represent the economic and general interests of urban communities. The cluster will work as a legal entity in the form of a non-governmental organisation, with the operational procedures, the association’s relations and competences to be discussed and established through the mutual agreement of the members.
The cluster’s general objectives are to participate and initiate innovative and growing projects, to support the sustainable urban development through legislative initiatives, the training of specialists in the field and the creation of new workplaces, as well as greening the urban transportation, attracting funds for rehabilitation projects and participating in consortium to project auctions regarding urban development. Internally, the cluster seeks to increase the profit of member companies, to develop its own products and services, together with a coherent cluster policy, a personal IT system, to contribute to the professional development of its members and employees and to attract funds for management.
Romania Green Building Council was among the signatories, along other 29 institutions coming from various fields, such as universities, financial institutions, constructions, sustainable energy, IT, transportation, as well as consultancy companies, project management companies, local public authorities and catalyst institutions. As a professional organisation, according to the agreement, RoGBC takes on the role to support the professional formation of the cluster’s members and its growth at national end euro-regional level.
Given the strong compatibility between the RoGBC objectives and those of the new Regional Cluster, we are pleased to be founding members of the most recent cooperation initiative in sustainable urban developments.
Tags: BREEAM, conference, Green Building, green buildings, LEED, Legislation, Legislative Outreach, Sustainable Development, tax reduction
Following the increased interest of the public authorities in Bucharest and throughout the country in the sustainable development of the built environment, on Monday, the 10th of June, Romania Green Building Council and the Association of Municipalities of Romania launched the Guide for local tax reduction on green buildings during the conference on financial incentives for the promotion of green constructions with a high energetic performance.
The document represents a working instrument for the local public authorities, meant to support the decision making process in order to attract investments for the construction of green buildings and to reward the investors’ efforts through tax reduction on these buildings.
The launch of the guide was accompanied by presentations that traced the context of the legislative proposal for tax reduction on green buildings. Mr. Steven Borncamp, president of the Romanian Green Building Council, launched the presentation series through a detailing of the benefits that the green buildings bring to both the Romanian community and to the development of the construction industry’s capacities. Mr. Borncamp depicted the necessity and the commitment required from the private investors to provide significant investments for the development of sustainable new buildings or renovation projects in exchange for the benefit of tax reduction. He also highlighted several success cases, including the Cluj-Napoca Municipality, the first town to apply the tax reduction on buildings in order to reward energy efficiency and green performance. In this respect, the vice- mayor of Bucharest, Mr. Marcel Nicolaescu, confirmed the orientation of the capital city towards an environmentally friendly urban development.
Luiza Manolea presented the legislation that stands at the basis of the decision of tax reduction on green buildings, a chance with which she highlighted the characteristics and principles on which this kind of tax incentives are rewarded, ensuring a high adaptability to the specificities of each community and willing to establish a balance between the interest of the community and that of the building owners. In this way, the highest investment efforts and the achievement of the highest sustainability requirements are rewarded through tax reductions, for a longer period up to four years, while the tax reductions don’t exceed a cumulative of 80% of the tax due. Also, she mentioned that the proposed fiscal measure for the promotion of green building is different from other fiscal or financial incentives, as: it includes all types of buildings, not only the residential ones, the investment comes from the owner, the initiative is private, the energetic efficiency requirements are higher and are accompanied by sustainability criteria, whose achievement is confirmed by final certifications internationally recognised.
Bringing a new perspective to the subject, this time the view of the energetic auditor, Mr. Eugen Goldhammer sent out a clear message- You can’t manage what you can’t measure. Thus, he highlighted the benefits of an energetic audit, both from the point of view of the authorities and that of the companies, given that it represents a major instrument within the implementation process and further on in the annual monitoring of the environmental management systems, according to ISO 14001 and EMAS, and that it has an important part in reaching the established objectives through the annual and multi- annual strategies of increasing the energetic efficiency and of reducing the emissions of carbon dioxide, and not the least, it reduces costs with maintenance of the buildings.
Further on, Alinda Dudu’s presentation concentrated on the introduction of the main international certifications in sustainability. She discussed the fact that the international certification standards for green buildings, of which LEED and BREEAM are the best known, represent a viable method of evaluating the performance in sustainability of a building. These systems are voluntary, neutrals- managed by third parties and can be applied at different stages of the building’s life, as well as to a variety of architectonic programs in Romania.
In addition to this, the subject of creating a package of tax incentives, neutrals from the point of view of the expenses, has been brought to discussion, in order to encourage the development of constructions, renovations and the management of environmentally friendly buildings, while bringing significant value to the local and regional economy. Mr. John Lyins discussed this subject, adding that from the point of view of the employees, they can only gain from the low rate of absenteeism and of illness, as well as from the increase of efficiency at the workplace.
The interest shown by the public authorities and their openness towards the improvement of community life encourage and at the same time bind us to continue the initiative to build or transform existing buildings into sustainable constructions. We wish that through this practical Guide, also meant to be a model of decision making for the local counsel, we can contribute to the implementation of as many instruments for the stimulation of green building constructions.
The guide for local tax reduction on green buildings, as well as the legislation pack that provided the basis to its realization can be accessed on the homepage of the Romania Green Building Council.
Learn more about the “Property Tax Reduction” Legislative Guide on “Money Magazine” – The Money Channel, Friday April 5th, 9:00pmApril 5, 2013 at 4:58 pm | Posted in Certification, General | Leave a comment
Tags: Aquarius Grup, BREEAM, Clifford Chance Badea, Energy Efficiency, Epstein Architecture & Engineering, LEED, Luiza Manolea Attorney at Law, property tax reduction for green building owners, The Money Channel
Luiza Manolea, Attorney at Law and Leader of the Legislative Outreach Task Group will talk about the legislative guide proposal aimed at recognizing achievements in green building tax reduction for green building owners.
“The RoGBC initiative to propose property tax reduction as a mechanism to promote green building is based on : the results of the report “Measures to attract investment in local green buildings“, which indicates the property tax reduction or exemption for a period of time, as forefront among the most relevant and easy to implement measures for encouraging the development of energy efficient buildings by public authorities, on the existing legislative framework regarding establishing property tax by local decisions, but within the limits set at national level on the Fiscal Code.
This approach has resulted in the legislative package made available to local councils and the General Council of Bucharest, in their capacity as decision makers regarding the property tax and also to interested building owners. This package includes both the explanatory memorandum for applying such a mechanism, as well as the actual draft decision of the local council / General Council of Bucharest.This local legislative proposal is flexible and can be adapted to the specificities of each city ” (Luiza Manolea)
The TV show will be re-broadcasted on Saturday, April 6th starting with 1:00pm and on Sunday, April 7th, starting with 12:00pm.
Enjoy the show!
The RoGBC would like to sincerely thank all the members involved in drafting this guide:
Triple Green Building Group is offering an online course which prepares proffesionals for the LEED Green Associate examMarch 20, 2013 at 5:56 pm | Posted in Certification, Member Projects, Training | Leave a comment
Tags: Kelly Gearhart, Learning Resources Network, LEED, LERN, RoGBC, Triple Green Building Group, Vessela Valtcheva-McGee
Triple Green Building Group, member of RoGBC, is offering via the Learning Resources Network (LERN) an online course which fully prepares proffesionals for the LEED Green Associate exam at their own pace.
The online courses consist of audio lectures, slideshows and quizzes that can be taken in order to evaluate your knowledge and progress. Furthermore, the course offers all the readings necessary to pass the exam.
Another advantage is the possibility of interaction with the instructor and the fellow participants, as you are able to post questions for the instructor will and also start online discussions with the other people attending the course, on the subject that has been presented.
The course will be taught online by Vessela Valtcheva-McGee and Kelly Gearhart.
Vessela Valtcheva-McGee has extensive experience with sustainablity in both practice and education. She has been a LEED AP since 2005 and has been a founder and President of a USGBC chapter in the United States, serving as an officer of the executive committee for 6 years. In her capacity as an architect she has worked on LEED projects of national significance and as a consultant she managed the administration and documentation of numerous LEED rating systems on projects of various scopes and sizes. After joining partners to form Triple Green Building Group, in 2008, she has taken the company international creating a base in her native country of Bulgaria where she is serving as Director of Education and Development for the Bulgarian Green Building Council. Vessela is currently an honorary guest lecturer at the Savannah College of Art and Design and is also in the process of becoming a DGNB international auditor and a BREEAM international assessor.
Kelly Gearhart is a founder and Principal with the international green building consulting firm Triple Green Building Group (Triple Green). She has served as an officer on the board of the USGBC Atlanta Chapter for two years as well as serving as a member of USGBC’s Southeast Regional Council. Accredited in the new Building Design + Construction and Existing Buildings: Operations + Maintenance programs, Kelly has taught over 75 full-day and multi-day LEED courses, facilitated seven full-day and multi-day green building charrettes, presented at 12 conferences, consulted with more than 100 clients on green building strategies and worked on over 30 LEED registered and certified projects across the U.S. and internationally. Currently, Gearhart is managing LEED projects, teaching courses at Berkeley, delivering LEED workshops around the U.S. and working to implement carbon reduction strategies in cities and municipalities throughout California as the Co-Chair of USGBC Northern California Chapter’s Climate Change Task Force.
The course can be attended at anytime of day or night, preferably at least 2-3 times a week.
For more information about the course and registration details please go to this link:
Tags: BREEAM, buildings, Certification, Green Building, Green Building Council, Green Building Projects, green buildings, green homes, green office, green renovation, LEED, renewable energy, RoGBC, Romania Green Building Council, sustainability, sustainable architecture, Sustainable Construction, Sustainable Development, sustainable_development, Training
Do you want to become a BREEAM or LEED assessor?
RoGBC just prepared for you a brief presentation about LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) and BREEAM (Building Research Establishment’s Environmental Assessment Method).
This LEED information package summarizes what LEED is, measures and delivers, which the rating systems are, the steps to achieving certification and also how to become a LEED professional.
This BREEAM information package tells you about what BREEAM provides, its objectives, types of projects and buildings that can be assessed using BREEAM. You can also find out the main things regarding BREEAM certification and how to become a BREEAM assessor.