GSA Goes LEED Gold, but…

The GSA has upped the ante on Green Building by mandating that all new federal construction shall now meet LEED Gold Standards. This is a great move and indicates a willingness to lead the way towards wide-scale adoption of sustainable building practices in commercial development.

But, I remain cautious in my optimism until I see one of two things; either a dedicated GSA-led compliance effort that validates the Gold rating during design and build with something more substantial than self-reporting checklists or a post-construction audit that serves the same purpose.

It’s one thing for privately-financed marquee projects to tout LEED Gold and Platinum credentials, it’s another thing for a high volume developer like the federal government to meet such a high standard in a lowest-bidder system.

If nobody’s watching, corners will be cut and the USGBC will need to issue a new LEED standard, Fools Gold.

Update: President Obama just signed two executive orders (EO 13423 and EO 13514) ordering the development of green building practices and accountability.  Glad to see he’s paying attention.

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