LEED to Offer Incentive for Bird-Friendly Buildings

There aren’t many downsides to a green building. High-tech construction and efficient energy use serve to both lessen negative impacts on the environment and lend a more modern look to a building. However, a spotlight has recently been placed on the high incidence of birds colliding with green buildings.

“Expanses of glass strategically placed to make the most of the sun’s light and heat are invisible to birds,” said a New York Times blog. “Rain gardens and trees planted around green buildings attract birds and make collisions more likely.” Up to one billion birds die by colliding with buildings in the U.S. every year. Although San Francisco and Chicago have already taken action by developing guidelines to create safer cities for our feathered friends, bird-friendly attributes are now getting the attention of the United States Green Building Council’s (USGBC) LEED certification program.

The American Bird Conservancy and the Bird-Safe Glass Foundation created a campaign that spurred the USGBC to give builders and designers credits toward LEED certification by featuring design elements that lessen the chance of bird fatalities. “The credit is being tested by the program’s Pilot Credit Library to make sure that it is effective before it becomes part of the permanent LEED guidelines.” In order to earn the credit, buildings must meet one façade requirement, one interior light requirement, one exterior light requirement and develop a monitoring program.

Although some green buildings are a risk to our avian brethren, the advantages of an environmentally-friendly building still outweigh the disadvantages. If you are interested in making the operations of your building more efficient, contact Advanced Control Corporation today. Advanced Control has been providing building automation, energy management, lighting control and other services to South Florida business since 1987. Call 954-491-6660 today to learn more.