Atlanta has been attracting many of the major industry expositions and conferences in recent years. As one of the largest annual events for green building professionals, the city will have to show its southern hospitality to thousands gathered to learn about quality of life in buildings, cities and communities.
From November 19-22, the focus on the conference and expo will once again be sustainability. Hosted by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), the mission is for attendees to better understand their role in protecting and preserving the natural environment. USGBC wants attendees to leave understanding how to: Enhance human health and wellbeing; Ensure resiliency; Mitigate climate change; Enhance community and social equity; Restore and protect our ecosystems; Enhance building efficiency and performance; and Promote sustainable design.
Annually, Greenbuild brings together some of the world’s leading business, environmental, and social leaders as speakers. Formerly known as “Plenaries,” this year Greenbuild will feature three “Keynotes” on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday of the conference.
On Tuesday, November 19, Dr. Bernice A. King will deliver a keynote to the Resilience and Global Health & Wellness summits. Dr. King is the Chief Executive Officer of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change, known as The King Center.
On Wednesday, November 20, for former U.S. President Barack Obama will present the conference official keynote. Promoted as a conversation, there will be much to discuss about the challenge and change he faced during his presidency in ushering in a stronger economy, more equal society, and nation more secure at home and respected around the world.
On Friday, November 22, Jamie Margolin will deliver the final keynote. Margolin is a 17-year-old Colombian-American writer, community organizer, activist and public speaker. She is the founder and co-executive director of the international youth climate justice movement Zero Hour, which lead the "Youth Climate March" in Washington, D.C. and 25 other cities around the world during the summer of 2018.
Workshops offer attendees up to seven hours of continuing education credit. All USGBC LEED education programs meet eligibility requirements for the LEED Green Associate, and many meet credential maintenance requirements for the Green Associate and LEED AP credentials. Annually, Greenbuild workshops are taught by skilled and experienced practitioners.
This year’s workshops include: “A Field Guide to Safe and Circular Building Materials;” “Getting Started with LEED v4.1 for Cities and Communities;” “LEED Green Associate Bootcamp;” “LEED v4.1: Driving Climate Action Globally, by Designing and Operating Greener Buildings Through LEED v4.1 BD+C ID+C, and O+M;” and “LEED v4.1 Decarbonization Workshop – Construction Materials.”
Greenbuild 2019 will feature more than 200 sessions. One session, “From Campus to Community: Spelman and Agnes Scott” will explore Spelman College, the first Historically Black College & University to join USGBC with the first LEED-certified residence hall on an HBCU campus. The session will look at how the school set an institutional example consisting of three kinds of sustainability: environmental, personal, and communal. The session will also look at Agnes Scott College, which is ranked No. 1 among national liberal arts colleges on U.S. News & World Report’s “Most Innovative Schools” list for 2018. The session will examine the campus’ five solar arrays and two geothermal fields, as well as its forward-thinking renovations to its historic buildings which have earned multiple LEED certifications.
Another session, “Mid-town ATL: A High Performance & Technology Hub,” will take attendees on a tour of three recent high-performance and innovative developments in Midtown Atlanta’s fast-growing technology hub, such as T3. T3 stands for “timber, transit, technology.” It is a new heavy timber building redefining the standard for the modern creative office that is located in the heart of the Atlantic Station and designed to combine a vintage industrial building with sustainability, connectivity and efficiency.
The session “Catalyst for Growth: 1996 Olympics and Beyond” will discuss how Centennial Olympic Park has spurred more than $2 billion of economic investment in the surrounding area. The 22-acre site recently completed a $27 million expansion and refresh, incorporating both social and environmental considerations, including a stormwater collection system, pervious pavement, an additional acre of green space, public art, the PATH bicycle track, and a gated dog area.
The full listing of Greenbuild sessions can be found at explore.greenbuildexpo.com/Attendee/Conference/Sessions.
The Greenbuild is curated to provide attendees with access the latest innovative products and services. A focal point of the event, the expo floor will feature more than 300 diverse companies such as Niagara Conservation, Armstrong Fluid Technology, and Neoperl.
The 2019 expo will include “Pavilions” that have been designed to help attendees navigate directly to the products they want to see and ultimately make their show floor experience more seamless. There will also be educational opportunities right on the expo floor. Such opportunities will include Applied Learning Areas and Education Labs.
What is Greenbuild without the the Annual Celebration? For the 2019 extravaganza, the rock band Collective Soul will be the headliner Taking place on Thursday, November 21, the party will be held at the recently opened Mercedes-Benz Stadium. The stadium is North America’s first LEED Platinum professional sporting arena.
Other special events for the week will include The USGBC Leadership Awards Ceremony on Wednesday, November 20. The ceremony will recognize outstanding individuals and organizations committed to advancing green building design, construction and operations. Then, on the same day, the Women in Green Power Luncheon will be held. Themed “The Culture of Courage,” the luncheon will celebrate the crucially needed and deliberate voice that women bring to society and green building movement.