LEED Platinum my ass

Happy Un-Earth Month, here's a continuation of the green rant.

So I went to my first LEED platinum building yesterday and I went to a Green Globes building a week and half ago. Having visited these buildings on exacerbated my hatred of USGBC. Excuse me for being a sell out and took the LEED exam, but I did it out of shear spite that the version after mine will require yearly dues rather than a one time fee. I will take the onetime fee thank you.

Let’s talk about the awesome building first… The Green Globe facility was a homeless shelter that has been designed to provide a homey transition environment for people in need and man did the architects do a good job. The materials used were bright and comforting and the structured allowed for lots of sunlight through. Excellent facility that makes me sad that Green Globes were purchased by JLL, thus can no longer provide third party grading of buildings as they have the past couple of years. Sad, because their system of rating buildings is more intuitive and actually more environmentally friendly.

Next, let me tell you about the time a row of us ladies looked at each other in the mirror laughing/crying at the outrageousness of trying to wash our hands in scolding water. The bathroom experience at the LEED building was horrendous. First, the toilets gave the option of flushing number 1 or number 2, pretty cool since you can use different amounts of water right? Wrong, they also set the usual auto flush sensors that went off before you get to pick ½, yeah, nice try on saving toilet water.

Okay, let’s go wash the hands. As the four of us stood at the sinks we realized the auto-sensors were not sensitive enough to feel our waving in front of the faucet. With our hands covered already in soap, we finally discovered that the hands had to take turns pretty much totally covering the sensor for the other hand to get water, water that was scolding hot. Yes, hot water, real environmentally friendly. We probably let more water flow through unused because our hands could only handle the rinsing one second at a time.

We all joked (when we’re actually not) wow, this is a counterproductive way to advertise this building for potential tenants and how is a LEED building better than others when the bathroom experience was pretty shitting (zing!). Yes, I’d love to know how rent in a LEED building would be more when the bathroom fixtures don’t’ work. This is just another example of how LEED is actually counterproductive to the sustainable design environment. Trying to push a rating system onto a building while the technology mandated by their book is still not advanced enough is just money and energy wasted, but the USGBC surely got their pay, when they charge for membership, and the certification process didn’t they?

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