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CCCIA members get ‘green’ education at meeting

By Staff | Jun 25, 2009

The Cape Coral Construction Industry Association laid the foundation Wednesday for its new Green Building Council, hosting its first meeting in an effort to help members stay on top of “green” trends in the industry.
Local builders have been humbled by the burst of the housing bubble, but were warned to get on board the green train or get left behind.
“Builders that are building green and building to a green standard are outbuilding those that aren’t 2-to-1,” said Drew Smith, president of Two Trails, a green building consulting company.
While the first green home was built nearly 20 years ago, the trend is starting to catch on nationally and statewide. Multiple organizations giving their version of “green certifications” to builders, however, is confusing construction companies trying to choose the right one.
Green building certification programs from the National Association of Home Builders and the Florida Green Builders Coalition seem to be the organizations with the most staying power, Smith said.
No matter who is issuing the green stamp on a home, builders must pay attention to the various elements of green homes — energy, water, indoor air quality, materials and sites.
“You can’t really have one without the others and have a green home,” he said.
Green homes provide a number of benefits, including: reducing electricity by 50 percent to 60 percent annually, 70 percent annual savings on heat and hot water, and 54 percent more efficient cooling and lighting.
Green homes are also 30 percent to 50 percent more energy efficient.
CCCIA executive director Patti Schnell said the Green Building Council will help her organization’s members transition to a green way of doing business.
“(Gov. Charlie Crist) has made it very clear that efficiency is in our future and you better just get ready for it, so we’re trying to help people just get ready for it,” she said.