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BASF Green Building Forum with Governor Charlie Crist - Builders Association of South Florida Green Buildings Forum, Miami, FL. Dr. H. Saedi addresses Florida Governor Charlie Crist on importance of Rebate Programs from utilities for switching to energy saving LED lights
BASF Green Building Forum with Governor Charlie Crist

 

NewswireTODAY - /newswire/ - Miami, FL, United States, 2010/10/29 - Builders Association of South Florida Green Buildings Forum, Miami, FL. Dr. H. Saedi addresses Florida Governor Charlie Crist on importance of Rebate Programs from utilities for switching to energy saving LED lights.

   
 
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On September 15, 2010, "The Green Buildings Forum" Sponsored by Builders Association of South Florida was held. The meeting was moderated by panelists and speakers included Florida Governor Charlie Crist, Miami-Dade County Clerk of the Courts, Harvey Rubin and Margarita "Maggie" Fernandez, who heads public outreach for Miami-Dade County's sustainability program.

Clerk of the Courts Harvey Ruvin, who also heads Miami-Dade's Climate Change Advisory Task Force, reviewed the county's leadership in setting green standards. "We need to keep managing the unavoidables," he said, then cited progress. Our courts are reducing paper files with electronic data, saving $35 million annually in traffic court alone. On-line access to the county's 110,000 open foreclosures is helping boost sales of homes, including those to computer-savvy foreign buyers.

Moderator was Luis Betalleluz, president of The BetaJones Group and chair of BASF's Green Building Council. He introduced panelists, beginning with architect Daphne Gurri, founding partner of Gurri Matute PA, who detailed steps to reduce negative impact on the environment. Several of her projects included careful site selection, minimum use of natural resources and ease of use in the final structure. "It's important to select a design team with LEED skills, identify a leader and register a project in the pre-design phase," said Gurri. "Third party registration validates the project with common benchmarks. Collaboration is key. Set goals with owners and operators. It makes everything easier."

Betalleluz added that green materials still cost more, "but with new technology not much more. Cost-analysis and careful planning boost the payback." In 15 projects he confirmed that traditional measures become "green" measures if you paint things white, recycle better or irrigate with roof runoff. A bonus? Your project has better marketability when finished.

Civil engineer Jay Huebner, vice president of HSQ Group, Inc., highlighted green issues at projects in Deerfield Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Davie and Miami that achieved a mix of Silver and Gold LEED status. They involved a mix of new construction and existing structures where he used soil moisture sensors to restrict water use, solar panels, bike racks, exfiltration trenches, drainage wells and playgrounds in dry detention areas. In one case operational costs fell by 34 percent. Typical additional cost for greening was about three percent. Betalleluz cited similar results at a Wynwood neighborhood center and a Seminole tribe leasing center using related improvements.

According to Paul Savage, a Coral Gables attorney who focuses on environmental and energy conservation issues, promises made in greening's early years of only two or three percent extra costs were seldom achieved. But now they are possible. He cautioned "don't try to darken the door of public officials without with good plans for going green." Mandatory and voluntary requirements are coming together, said Savage, and Florida's building code keeps getting stronger.

Margarita "Maggie" Fernandez, who heads public outreach for Miami-Dade County's sustainability program, focused on the balance needed between economic, social and environmental demands. South Florida is adding to its early efforts in the '80s and '90s. Up the road? Hybrid-drive garbage trucks are coming soon to a curb near you. Fernandez looks forward to working with BASF and others in best use of tax incentives, a $12.5 million grant for energy conservation and a new $1.5 million revolving fund to help businesses improve their properties.

During the meeting Dr. H. Saedi, director of Advanced LED Solution LLC (advancedledsolution.com), spoke with Governor Crist regarding the importance of contributions from utility companies and the lack in viable Rebate Programs for commercial and industrial customers for energy savings resulted by switching from conventional to LED lights.

Dr. Saedi also addressed Ms. Fernandez regarding misconceptions and wrong information that is perpetuated by many in the LED light industry and offered his expertise to guide the County in the vetting process.

 
 
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Agency / Source: Advanced LED Solution, LLC

 
 

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BASF Green Building Forum with Governor Charlie Crist

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