August 27, 2013
Buildings are more than edifices of brick and mortar. They’re also physical manifestations of our priorities as a society. With the pursuit of LEED Platinum Certification, the new S.J. Quinney College of Law building is not only a world-class learning institute, it’s also a catalyst for leadership in the area of sustainable development and practices.
LEED Certification is a third-party verification program evaluating and recognizing building projects that have made substantial efforts to lessen their environmental impact. To qualify, projects must satisfy prerequisites and earn points to achieve different levels of certification. LEED projects receive points for environmentally innovative design and construction elements in five key areas: Sustainable Sites; Water Efficiency; Energy and Atmosphere; Materials and Resources; and Indoor Environment Quality. Platinum is the highest level of certification available. When the building achieves this certification it will be one of the most sustainable law buildings in the country.
An exciting aspect of the S.J. Quinney College of Law’s LEED process is the creation of the Green Team, a collaborative group of faculty, staff, students, alumni, and interested community members working to identify and implement sustainability programs that complement the building’s green design features. For example, the team has already organized participants for the Clear the Air Challenge, is investigating green purchasing practices, and has created educational materials and baseline surveys to inform future programming. The primary goal of the Green Team is to foster a lasting and holistic ethic of sustainability for building residents and visitors.
To get involved, email Michele Straube »
These efforts are especially important because the College’s physical environment will now match its legacy of high caliber and innovative environmental programs including the Wallace Stegner Center and Symposium, Environmental Dispute Resolution (EDR) Program, and Graduate Certificate in Environmental and Natural Resources Law.
Michele Straube, Director of the EDR Program and Green Team representative, explains, “We want to seize the opportunity for this building to be more than a display of fancy gadgets. By first investing in green features and then educating and engaging occupants, we hope to have a ripple effect of sustainable thinking and leadership into the broader community. The physical building is a great starting point, but the Green Team hopes to make it much more!”
To get involved, email Michele »
As an interactive and ongoing process, the Green Team welcomes ideas, suggestions, and comments about how to best celebrate and achieve its mission. Read more about the LEED Certification process »