WREF Highlights for Architects

Superstars of the green building movement will address the World Renewable Energy Forum in Denver, May 13-17.

mazria-usgbccolorado1Ed Mazria, founder of Architecture 2030, will deliver a plenary address on Tuesday morning, May 15.

In 2003, Mazria, a pioneer in passive solar architecture, calculated that buildings are the source of half of all carbon dioxide emissions. He publicized that discovery with the ground-breaking article “It’s the Architecture, Stupid,” in the May/June 2003 issue of SOLAR TODAY, the magazine of the American Solar Energy Society. An explosion of laboratory activity in energy-efficient design followed.  In January, 2006, Mazria issued the Architecture 2030 Challenge (architecture2030.org), working with climate scientists to establish incremental efficiency goals for buildings. It was adopted by the American Institute of Architects.

Mazria’s summary of Architecture 2030 goals and progress, addressed to a plenary session of SOLAR 2011 a year ago, brought a standing ovation.

Ambassador Bruce Oreck
Ambassador Bruce Oreck

Bruce J. Oreck, creator of the NextWest House and other zero-energy projects, is the United States Ambassador to Finland. He is now driving a complete renovation of the embassy in Helsinki with a focus on sustainable high performance.  The embassy’s new Innovation Center, a 100-year-old building, is on target for LEED Platinum EB Certification, and the entire embassy compound will be the first in the world to utilize both district heating and district cooling (over 90 percent efficient).

Ambassador Oreck serves as chair of the League of Green Embassies, a global network of more than 90 diplomatic missions pursuing a common agenda for energy efficiency, renewable energy and water conservation. The League also acts as a platform for America businesses to promote their high -performance energy products, services and skills in foreign markets around the globe.

Program Highlights

Start your week at WREF with a session on Solar Building Design (Monday, May 14, 10:30am), featuring ten presentations on everything from “Passive House Design” to “America’s Oldest Net Zero Energy Home.”

Later the same day, the ASES Solar Buildings Division hosts the popular Emerging Architecture Forum  (Monday, May 14, 4:15pm). The topic:  AIA’s Committee on the Environment  award winners.

The program includes many highly technical sessions like Building Analysis (Thursday, May 17, 2:45pm), covering topics such as “Validation of Thermal Network Modeling” and “Acclimated Kinetic Building Envelopes.” There are also practical examples of how-to-do-solar with Building Case Studies (Wednesday, May 16, 1:15pm), highlighting 11 projects around the world, including Havana, Hawaii, Iraq, Australia and North Carolina.  The session on Sustainable Commercial Buildings and Low Energy Architecture in Colorado (Tuesday, May 15, 1:15 pm) features notable local projects. See the full schedule here!

Take advantage of the opportunity to tour NREL’s spectacular Research Support Facility, the most efficient large office building in the nation.

And don’t forget: WREF sessions can earn you continuing education credits for AIA and GBCI requirements!

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