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More Certification Negativity as Jerry Yudelson signs on as GBI President

placeholder+imagePosted on: 01/13/2014

Healthy competition is a good thing.  but I don't know what to make of the recent "advice" to new GBI (Green Globes) President Jerry Yudelson, delivered on the USGBC site by Roger Platt:!.  

Personally, I am very concerned and think we all need a dialogue about certification in the green building industry.  As with any industry, there should not be a monopoly.  Companies and individuals should be able to choose solutions that work best for them, from among some healthy options and perhaps at different price and complexity points.  And these options do not have to be versions  the same thing (often best if they aren't!).  I also believe in transparency.  And in a manageable marketplace.  And I think right now, there is considerable confusion.  Bitter arguments/feuds  really don't make it better.    

Roger Platt is correct that many do not feel favorably about some of the interests "behind" Green Globes.  So, perhaps this is a great time to embrace transparency and for the Green Globes to state as an organization who it is and what it stands for, and why.  And perhaps the GBI might shake up some.  Doesn't Jerry deserve a chance to make some changes?  Is a certifier funded by the industry unable to move in a healthy green direction?  Aren't most certifiers industry supported and subject to some pressure?  And if so, how do we make the organizations independent enough to make great choices?  Don't these organizations exist, just like the USGBC because the US Government was not taking the lead and taking any action?  

I also agree that The GBI should refrain from bashing LEED or anyone else.  It does seem that recent anti-LEED lobbying has been worrisome, too.  I believe in competition, and I think the federal government and states should be able to choose the standards that work best for them.  However, perhaps Roger and the USGBC should take its own advice here.  The tone in this piece is downright nasty.  Perhaps some defensiveness is understandable - maybe just not as productive as desired?    

I think the most worrisome part of this article for me is an early reply, where someone commented basically, "You know, this is why I left the USGBC, and the green building industry."  This failure to retain people and passion is EXACTLY what I don't want to have happen.  Rate It Green was created to help companies and people provide the kind of information to help others make positive, great choices.  Because it's too hard to find trustworthy information and a great positive debate about what's best.  We need to get rid of the negativity and focus on getting more people excited to lower their footprints and build green.