When I first heard about the LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) program I was not quite sure what that meant. I suddenly find myself now checking each location I go to for a convention or trade show or look at each meeting venue to see if they are a LEED certified building. Trade Show Week recently reported that the Los Angeles Convention Center was named as a LEED certified building. The LEED buildings are few across the United States and yet this is a growing number as more and more convention authorities try to keep up with the Jones’ in trying to meet the demands of the public that companies and buildings do all they can to join the environmental movement of “going green”.
The LEED certification is monitored by the U.S. Green Building Council. Some of the benefits listed by the USGBC on their site for LEED certified buildings are:
- Lower operating costs and increased asset value.
- Reduce waste sent to landfills.
- Conserve energy and water.
- Healthier and safer for occupants.
- Reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions.
- Qualify for tax rebates, zoning allowances and other incentives in hundreds of cities.
- Demonstrate an owner’s commitment to environmental stewardship and social responsibility.
In order to determine if your building can be certified as a LEED building, you can go to the website and see the rating system. I have been to a LEED rated building while I was in Portland, and they take the rating very serious and wear their badge with honor. If you are a meeting planner or convention and trade show planner, you should check your facility to see if it too is a LEED certified building. You can become popular amongst your peers if you are looking out for the environment while planning your convention or trade show.