Current Administration Announces New Actions to Bring Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency across the Country

The renewable energy and sustainability trend continues to grow.. this time with an extra helping hand from the Government.  President Obama has issued a series of executive actions and private sector commitments to expedite the U.S. transition to cleaner sources:

  • $1 billion in additional loan guarantee authority available and new guidelines for distributed energy projects that use innovative technology and states seeking to tap into this financing;
  • $24 million for 11 projects in seven states to develop advanced solar technologies that double the amount of energy each solar panel can generate;
  • A transmission line that will support bringing online a 485-megawatt photovoltaic facility to be built in Riverside County and produce enough renewable energy to power more than 145,000 homes; and
  • Interagency task force to promote clean energy

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Resilience Engineering – Next level of Sustainability?

Resiliency is the hot topic in the A/E and construction world.  The private, federal, state, including our very own City of Norfolk, has done their fair share of research and development on the subject.  So what exactly does resilient design mean?  What are the standards for resiliency?  How is it governed and rated?


Well, the quick answer:  that’s still being developed.  Individuals from the Washington, D.C.-based Capital Markets Partnership have developed a new rating & standards system being dubbed “RELi.”  Two of the certification programs are based in Washington, D.C. — the United States Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design and the Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure’s Envision program.

Some ideas were pulled from Minnesota’s SB 2030 Energy Standard and the Living Green Challenge. The RELi “Resiliency Action” list Pierce created has more than 200 actions, many from LEED and Envision. About 60 actions focus on resiliency, in particular hazard preparedness and hazard mitigation.

RELi’s guidelines are available at, the C3 Living Design Project, which describes the program in great detail. Mike Italiano, CEO of Capital Markets and founder of the U.S. Green Building Council, said the impact of global warming is already being taken into account by the insurance industry and financial institutions. They want to support and invest in more sustainable communities that can withstand increasingly unpredictable and dangerous weather.

Bowman, Foster & Associates looks forward to continuing to provide our clients with services to better cope with potential disasters while maintaining sustainable buildings for now and the future.

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