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Greed standard trumps LEED standard at the General Assembly

Ready to cry “uncle” yet? The folks running the North Carolina General Assembly hope so.  As Chris Fitzsimon will discuss this afternoon in today’s Fitzsimon File, the reactionary legislation is coming so thick and fast these days at the General Assembly that it’s simply hard to keep up — much less speak out or have input.

It’s no wonder more and more good people are simply speaking with their feet and bodies [1].

Yet another classic (and likely to be under-reported) example of extreme and destructive legislation simply getting lost in the shuffle on Jones Street is this measure [2]— which would  prevent North Carolina from seeking LEED certification for public buildings. LEED [3] (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) the best known and most respected “green” building rating system.  

The measure, which will be heard this afternoon in the House Agriculture Committee at 1:00 pm in 643 LOB, was apparently introduced at the request of North Carolina timber interests.

Interestingly, not only does the proposal stifle the growth of building new, energy efficient buildings, but by disallowing efforts to meet LEED standards, it would also limit a market for other North Carolina industries that contribute to the construction process, including concrete, brick, and metals, to name a few. Often, you see, it’s less environmentally destructive to use some of those products rather than cutting down even more trees.

According to the US Green Building Council of North Carolina, North Carolina ranks 11th nationally with 1,375 commercial buildings that are LEED registered or certified.

The bottom line: As we should have known, when it comes to the common good, the only measurement that matters on Jones Street these days is the greed standard.