Sustainability ENews Vol 13#1 Making an Impact

Sustainability E-News
Making an Impact
January 15, 2021
Volume 13, Number 1
From The Editor
Happy New Year! As we begin a new year it's a great time to take stock of what you are involved in, and what is missing in your professional life. There are of course many ways to get involved in the AEC industry. There are two areas I am particularly fond of. The first is introducing young people to engineering and trades in the building industry. The other is being a voice for change. Is there something in a code or standard that you use that you think isn't quite right or is difficult to understand or use? If so, I'd encourage you to get involved in its updating. It's quite satisfying to work toward making changes to codes and standards that make them more useable, efficient, and effective. There are many ways to do that, including suggesting ideas and commenting on public review versions, as noted in several of the articles below.
If you are interested in masonry, I'd encourage you to get involved in The Masonry Society (TMS)! TMS is a great place to make a difference and be a voice for change. It's also a great place to learn from industry experts and network with some fabulous people. Check out the TMS website for more information and watch for opportunities highlighted in this newsletter. For those of you who are already members, consider recognizing the contributions of your peers by nominating them for TMS Fellow Member status. Click here for more information and to nominate someone..
Christine "Tina" Subasic, PE, LEED AP        
NOTE: Inclusion in this newsletter is not an endorsement of the products and materials featured, nor have these products been evaluated by TMS or the editor. Furthermore, the views expressed in the articles featured are those of the article authors.
The performance of existing building stock is a cause for concern as the first link below demonstrates one city's experience. ~Tina
New York City energy efficiency grades for big building are mostly D’s and F’s
New York City’s new energy efficiency grading system for large commercial buildings is forcing large building owners to take stock of energy efficiency requirements. Most are getting D's and F's according to this article.
Buildings are becoming a huge source of carbon pollution
Carbon emissions from buildings reached an all-time high in 2019, according to a new United Nations report. Read more.
Energy efficiency tax deduction made permanent
The Covid Relief Bill, H.R. 133, which was signed into law on December 27th, made permanent the 179D energy efficient commercial buildings federal tax deduction, which had been scheduled to expire at year end. Read more here.
Do you have ideas for better, more resilient designs? If so, you can share your thoughts as part of the call for ideas and public comment period linked in the articles below. ~Tina
Call for ideas on resilience programs
Share your insights and proposals for USGBC and GBCI resilience programs. This call for ideas provides a platform for stakeholders to share their thoughts and insights about how programs offered by USGBC and GBCI can achieve the goals of resilient buildings, cities and communities.
USGBC advocacy in 2020
Read more about USGBC's advocacy achievements from the past year at the federal, state, and local levels of government and in the private sector at this link.
Public review opens for new ASCE standard for sustainable infrastructure
ASCE is conducting a public comment period on the new standard activity ASCE/COS 73-XX Standard Requirements for Sustainable Infrastructure. The public comment period will run until January 25, 2021. The components and outcomes described in the chapters of this standard are intended to guide sustainable infrastructure development through the entire life-cycle process.
The National Concrete Masonry Association (NCMA) is looking for innovative ideas in concrete masonry products, production, and design as part of the creative concepts forum. Check out the article below and submit your ideas today! ~Tina
2021 Product Development and Creative Concepts Forum submissions now open
NCMA’s Product Development and Creative Concepts (PDCC) Forum is now accepting submissions. The PDCC recognizes and advances the development of new and innovative concrete masonry products, methods of production, and block, SRW, and manufactured stone designs and systems integration within the concrete masonry and concrete hardscape industries. 
N.Y. bills would benefit green concrete industry
ENGINEERING NEWS-RECORD (tiered subscription)
The New York State Legislature will vote on two bills that could benefit the green concrete industry. The bills will offer incentives to companies that produce materials, such as recycled glass, that can be mixed with the cement traditionally used in concrete. Read more about them here.
Locking carbon dioxide into concrete is a cool idea
The cement industry is responsible for about 8% of annual emissions of carbon dioxide. That provides an opportunity because it means cement is a big, fat target for technological progress. Global Cement Magazine has been highlighting new technologies for reducing the amount of carbon dioxide in cement and concrete. Many of these were featured in their April issue, and more are discussed in the recently released December issue. Read more
All levels of concrete industry fight against emissions
The world's major cement and concrete producers are in "an arms race of sorts" to develop and commercialize products that curtail carbon emissions, Gigi Wood writes in this article. Academic institutions and professional associations are also joining the fight through research, educational events, road maps, and benchmarking and gap analyses.
Best of 2020
Check out NCMA’s best stories of 2020 at this link.
Register Now: Strength Design of Masonry
Mark your calendars for the next in our Masonry Night School series: Strength Design of Masonry. Richard M. Bennett and John M. Hochwalt, authors of TMS's newest and best-selling new guide Strength Design of Masonry, will present a six-session Strength Design of Masonry Night School beginning February 3, 2021. This course covers topics such as the design of beams and walls (for in-plane and out-of-plane loads), seismic detailing, and design of connectors. It will provide in-depth instruction for anyone interested in designing more efficient masonry structures using strength design of masonry.
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