Building Vegas GREENer
Green buildings are good for the planet and for people too. Building Vegas GREENer showcases the development of some of the green buildings sprouting up in Las Vegas including the Vegas PBS Educational Technology Campus. In each episode, viewers get an insider's look at some of the local businesses, people and products forwarding Las Vegas' green movement and experts share information on the latest sustainable technologies and procedures
What is a green building?
Green building is the practice of creating structures and using processes that are environmentally responsible and resource-efficient throughout a building's life-cycle from siting to design, construction, operation, maintenance, renovation and deconstruction.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
In the United States alone, buildings account for:
- 72% of electricity consumption
- 39% of energy use
- 38% of all carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions
- 40% of raw materials use
- 30% of waste output (136 million tons annually)
- 14% of potable water consumption.
-United States Green Building Council
Benefits of Building Green
- Environmental Benefits: Conserve natural resources, improve water and air quality & reduce solid waste
- Economic Benefits: Reduce operating costs, improve asset value and profits, enhance employee satisfaction and productivity
- Health and Community Benefits: Improve air, acoustic and thermal environments, enhance occupant comfort and health, decrease strain on local infrastructure & contribute to overall quality of life
What is LEED?
A method of green building standards, called, Leadership in Energy and Efficient Design, or LEED, developed as a means of measuring how "green" a building actually is.
USGBC when it was formed in the early '90's, it needed a tool for its toolbox; it needed to standardize a checklist or a format for people to follow that was a third party verification to make sure that the building was built to LEED standards, which again is: Leadership in Energy and Efficient Design, so it's one of our tools in the toolbox for the Green Building Council.
There are four levels of LEED Certification: LEED Certified, Silver, Gold and Platinum.
Vegas PBS Educational Technology Campus "Eco Savings"
- The Campus will save a tremendous amount of water each year by incorporating a closed-loop geothermal heat pump system, water-conserving bathroom fixtures & drought-tolerant landscaping.
- The Campus will use an estimated 35 to 40% less energy than a traditional building of its size.
- The Campus' solar panels are expected to deliver more than 15% of the building's electricity needs.
- The Campus' closed-loop geothermal heat pump system will use 50 to 75% less fossil fuel than traditional systems. It will also save approximately 21% in air conditioning costs over the building's lifetime.
- Utilizing daylight to light the building should save the Campus up to 20% on power bills.
- The Campus utilized steel with approximately 85% recycled content, which earned the project 1 LEED point.