Nashville to Host Green Building Conference

By: Gary Ashton

Nashville will soon be the hosting a conference aimed at encouraging builders, designers and community planners to think green in an effort to keep Tennessee's water clean. The conference, presented by the Kentucky Dept. for Environmental Protection and the Tennessee Dept. of Environment and Conservation, actually focuses on the water quality of the entire Southeast area, and seeks to inform officials of the benefits of considering the environment on every level of development, and what regulations they can implement to encourage this in their communities. By creating a dialogue between all levels involved, from architects to builders and contractors to rule-makers, the conference should be an excellent way to get everyone on the same page when it comes to our water conservation priorities. It could also generate some exciting new ideas.

There are a variety of design aspects that can impact water. With conservation in mind, high-efficiency appliances and plumbing are a must. With quality in mind, careful waste disposal and special storm drain considerations should be paramount. Landscaping is another consideration. If carefully planned, it can be tailored to need the minimum amount of watering and maintenance. If not carefully planned, it can be a huge energy hog, and a way for pollutants like herbicides and chemical fertilizers to enter our groundwater. That is why it is so important for all levels of development to be considering water quality all along the line. It is far from difficult to enjoy our existing standard of living while also doing a lot to protect our environment.

There have been a lot of breakthroughs in environmentally conscious building, in the areas of design and materials. Conferences like these are a great opportunity for those working in all levels of the development, and even maintenance, industry, as well as consumers, to learn what is available to them. For this reason, the conference is targeting everyone from plumbers to the school board as their desired audience.

The conference will have a variety of presentations from a very diverse group of presenters, covering the challenges they have faced in their area, mistakes they may have made, as well as the successes and things they've learned along the way. By sharing information we eliminate the need for anyone to re-invent the wheel.

Green building is so important, not only for our local water and the entire planet, but also for the image of development industry business'. As the health of the environment comes to the forefront of the mind of the consumer, it should also come to the forefront of any business' mandate. This conference should prove to be cost effective to anyone present. I highly recommend it to anyone in the industry in Tennessee.

America Properties
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