News
News Home
Quick Bites
Exploradio
News Archive
News Channel
Special Features
NPR
nowplaying
On AirNewsClassical
Loading...
  
School Closings
WKSU Support
Funding for WKSU is made possible in part through support from the following businesses and organizations.

Area Agency on Aging 10B, Inc.

Akron General


For more information on how your company or organization can support WKSU, download the WKSU Media Kit.

(WKSU Media Kit PDF icon )


Donate Your Vehicle to WKSU

Programs Schedule Make A Pledge Member BenefitsFAQ/HelpContact Us
Government and Politics


Resolution could change energy efficiency standards for public buildings
Some legislators believe the new standards go beyond their purpose
by WKSU's ANDY CHOW


Reporter
Andy Chow
 
Senator Joe Uecker says the latest version of the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design requirements enters into the realm of environmental politics.
Courtesy of Ohio Senate
Download (WKSU Only)
In The Region:
Energy efficiency advocates are battling a resolution that could change the standards used when public buildings are designed. As Statehouse correspondent Andy Chow reports, some legislators believe the new standards overreach.
LISTEN: Differing view points on the use of LEED version 4

Other options:
Windows Media / MP3 Download (3:27)


Right now public buildings, such as schools and government offices, are drawn up using what’s known as LEED requirements, which stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED).

A resolution sponsored by Republican Sen. Joe Uecker from Clermont County would urge state construction officials to avoid the latest version of LEED when designing a building.

Environmental politics?
“The reason why this came up is that the new version — LEED Version 4 — by the U.S. Green Building Council kind of goes beyond the scope of energy efficiency and enters into the realm of environmental politics.”

Uecker says several industries fear of losing construction work because of these new standards.

LEED Version 4 is the first update by the U.S. Green Building Council in five years. David Scott is with the council’s central Ohio chapter. He defends the new guidelines and says it’s a common sense upgrade.

“LEED is like a typical building code. Codes evolve over time. For example, a long time ago we used lead paint, a long time ago we used asbestos. Well now those things aren’t allowed anymore pursuant to building code. So building codes get tougher, LEED is designed to get tougher.”

Chemical and plastics opposition
Scott says the chemicals and plastics industry is the driving force behind this resolution. He believes their opposition to the new LEED version is misguided.

“They’re irritated because they believe certain types of products they have said will be blacklisted. The fact of the matter is the newest version of LEED has no blacklist at all.”

But according to Uecker, LEED gives out points for using certain materials. So, if a company uses materials that are not on the list, such as foam insulation or wood that comes from controversial logging, then they don’t earn the points they need to become LEED certified.

“It’s a very convoluted and difficult process that these buildings go through for certification, and we just think that putting Ohio jobs at risk is unacceptable," Uecker says.

He notes that building planners must still follow an energy efficiency program such as Green Globe or Energy Star, just not the latest version of LEED. That means previous version of LEED would even work.

Saving money
In a study of 100 LEED schools in Ohio, Scott says, those buildings are saving 34 percent more energy and saving 37 percent more water.

“They’re doing away with something that’s proven to be good — the LEED rating system — without offering anything better.”

Scott adds that this resolution could impact taxpayers.

“If you’re a taxpayer in Ohio you should be concerned about this because LEED has been proven to save energy and water and deliver and good return on our tax dollars’ investment in any public building.”

But Ueker disagrees.
“That’s absolutely ridiculous and absurd—to say that you can only have an energy efficient building if it’s LEED certified is absolutely ludicrous.”

Uecker notes that his measure is only a resolution and doesn’t carry the amount of weight or teeth that a law would bring. But, as he explains, some legislators are wondering if they should take a different path.

“As a result of all the opponent testimony it does beg the question—should this be a bill mandating as opposed to a resolution suggesting?”

The resolution, which has had three hearings, is still in the committee stage.

Add Your Comment
Name:

Location:

E-mail: (not published, only used to contact you about your comment)


Comments:




 
Page Options

Print this page

E-Mail this page / Send mp3

Share on Facebook




Stories with Recent Comments

Cuyahoga Valley National Park OK's sharpshooters to thin deer herds
In this article you mention that the Mule Deer Foundation is a "hunting group" in reality the Mule Deer Foundation is a conservation group that is over 25 years...

In the driver's seat of history
I believe he was a teacher of mine as James Ford Rhodes. My favorite teacher of all time! Loved learning this part of his amazing history.

Cleveland RTA is moving Public Square bus stops beginning this week
I am very confused. Why are you taking one or more of the park and ride 246 out of service in the morning. I looking over the new schedule I see that there ar...

Canton school board will vote Wednesday on its high school merger
Great to see that THE REPOSITORY is advising a 'no' vote for now! Another point, besides all the Very accurate points already made against this move is the fac...

Some parents opting their students out of Common Core test
I am an 8th grader at a school in Allen County. I have just recently taken the ELA performance based assessment and found it extremely difficult. It asked me a ...

Fallout from the Ohio Supreme Court Munroe Falls ruling
The comment by Nathan Johnson from OEC is confusing. Instead of cities being 'emboldened' to craft zoning laws that were just stricken down by this ruling, comm...

Stopping sediment dumping in Lake Erie
Ah, yes, the Army Coro of Engineers, the geniuses that designed the levee system in New Orleans that has made the flooding worse due to no sediment reaching the...

Ohio charter school critic says reform bills are a good step
The cold truth is that these charter schools are offering services beyond the what the state tests can guage. Parents and students have a choice and they are ch...

State law trumps restrictions on oil and gas drilling in Munroe Falls
Justice O'Neill's quote brings up a point I wish WKSU would address: since, unlike for Federal judges, our judges here in Ohio are elected, and therefore respo...

Ohio Supreme Court invalidates local fracking bans
If Ohio has their way, Fracking Wells will be planted in the courtyard of every town. That is if the State of Ohio can profit by it...for more on how the court ...

Copyright © 2015 WKSU Public Radio, All Rights Reserved.

 
In Partnership With:

NPR PRI Kent State University

listen in windows media format listen in realplayer format Car Talk Hosts: Tom & Ray Magliozzi Fresh Air Host: Terry Gross A Service of Kent State University 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. NPR Senior Correspondent: Noah Adams Living on Earth Host: Steve Curwood 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. A Service of Kent State University