Volume 15, Issue Number 1 May 12, 2009

SMACNA Sustainability Position Statement

Table of Contents
SMACNA homepage

“Green building” began as an environmental campaign, but has now become a recognized subdivision within the construction industry and as individuals, and as an organization, SMACNA’s members want to maintain, and whenever possible, improve a way of life that is a role model for the globalized world we live in today. SMACNA’s members play a key role in the building industry – the design, fabrication, installation, commissioning and operation of HVAC systems which arguably play the most important role in sustainable buildings.

While building operations in the United States consumes some 40 percent of our energy and 71 percent of our electricity, they also can contribute to potential health problems. Indoor air pollutant concentrations are typically between two and five times the amount of pollutants found in outdoor air, and can even reach a level of 100 times the amount. Most Americans spend 90 percent of their time inside a building, a fact which helps one understand the importance of indoor air quality.

SMACNA and its members have chosen to do their part in the design, construction and operation of buildings to continuously move the industry closer to a sustainable future. However, to achieve success, the assistance and teamwork of designers, building operators, building trades and governmental agencies are essential. SMACNA and its members are working in conjunction with organizations to develop plans that use resources more efficiently and, together we will enhance standards that can be implemented to reduce energy use and increase sustainability.

Key Points

  • Standards – Design and construction of all elements of buildings should rely on systems, methods and materials that are based on standards developed via a recognized consensus process
  • Standards – Promote integrated designs to balance function with sustainability, while enhancing the priority for environmentally responsible construction and operational practices
  • Standards – Promote research by industry, scientific, and governmental entities to provide the design/construct/maintain industry with future guidance for sustainable practices
  • Education – Encourage development of education programs K-12 through collegiate, continuing education, and legislative—to provide access to state-of-the-art practices in sustainable construction, service and operation of buildings for all
  • Planning – To encourage properly operated buildings through commissioning an ongoing monitoring and documentation of energy and water consumption. This will identify potential continuous improvements in building operations to reduce consumption of limited resources
  • Planning – Support building information models (BIM), interoperable software tools and product data management to reduce costs and errors while improving all aspects of performance over the design-construct-operation life cycle of a building.

Editor: Rosalind P. Raymond rraymond@smacna.org  |  Asst. Editor/Writer: Cynthia Young cyoung@smacna.org

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