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For The Record

Given the continuous discussion about building green, it comes as no surprise that the U.S. Green Building Council’s Greenbuild International Conference & Expo has grown into a large, dynamic event. The Masonry staff traveled to Phoenix last month to attend Greenbuild 2009, which sprawled over three floors of the Phoenix Convention Center.

To be sure, our country is trudging through a down economy. But Greenbuild attendees – more than 28,000 of them – did not let it affect their energy or enthusiasm. Business was taken care of as networking took place, with some talk of a hopeful Q2 and Q3 of 2010. The show had 1,800 vendors who haven’t given up on our industry’s ability to weather storms and keep our chin up.

More good news: The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) and Booz Allen Hamilton have released a steady revealing that green building will support 7.9 million U.S. jobs and pump $554 billion into the American economy – including $396 billion in wages – during the next four years (2009-2013). The study also determined that green construction spending currently supports more than 2 million American jobs and generates more than $100 billion in gross domestic product and wages. The economic impact of the total green construction market from 2000 to 2008 contributed $178 billion to U.S. gross domestic product; created or saved 2.4 million direct, indirect and induced jobs; and generated $123 billion in wages. The study considered the total value of green buildings, and the results include workers from the architects who design them and the construction laborers who pour their foundations, to the truck drivers who deliver the materials, in recognition of the extent of the impact of building green. The full report can be downloaded at www.usgbc.org/greeneconomy.

Following are stats from the report regarding the economic impact of the total green construction market:

    Contribution to the U.S. gross domestic product:
        2000-2008: $173 billion
        2009-2013 forecast: $554 billion
    Jobs created or saved (includes direct, indirect and induced jobs):
        2000-2008: 2.4 million
        2009-2013 forecast: 7.9 million
    Wages:
        2000-2008: $123 billion
        2009-2013 forecast: $396 billion
    Energy savings:
        2000-2008: $1.3 billion saved
        2009-2013 forecast: $6 billion saved.

Look for more articles in the January 2010 issue of Masonry covering both brick and block as sustainable, green materials.

Last Updated on Friday, 20 November 2009 15:16