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Leading the Way to Better Buildings by Design

Nov 26, 2013

This February, the efficiency utility we operate in Vermont will host its 11th annual Better Buildings by Design (BBD) Conference. With workshops led by international leaders in their fields, BBD is the Northeast’s premier design and construction conference and a key aspect of Efficiency Vermont’s successful market transformation efforts in Vermont.

Building capacity for sustainable change

A necessary objective of any efficiency utility is to create a skilled workforce around energy efficiency. BBD is one of the ways in which Efficiency Vermont fosters the professional development of the people who make energy-efficiency a reality: by providing this yearly opportunity for professional growth and continuing education, much of which carries credits from the AIA, AEE, and other professional organizations.

Networking is an important component of BBD, with plenty of opportunities built in for attendees to mingle and make connections, and an exhibit hall full of vendors ready to demonstrate the latest technology or approach. BBD also extends scholarships to students studying the advancement of renewables and energy efficiency, and serves as an informal learning opportunity for the legislators that drop by each year for the evening reception.

Rewarding excellence in integrative thinking and design

Highly-anticipated each year are the Efficiency Vermont Best of the Best awards, recognizing the year’s most innovative and effective building projects in both new and existing construction. The winners are announced at BBD and publicized across the state, helping to raise awareness of—and the standard for—energy excellence in Vermont.

Pushing the envelope, one year at a time

With so many repeat attendees, the conference adds new offerings each year. This year’s theme is Net Zero by 2030, with workshops like Achieving Net-Zero Energy in a Campus Building and Lighting and Daylighting in Zero-Net Schools, along with sessions on Vermont code, financing options, and basic energy-efficient lighting design.

Attendees gain deeper and stronger connections to the build/design community and the region becomes better prepared to meet its energy demands—now, and into the future. After all, true market transformation cannot occur unless a new economy is built to sustain it.

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