March 2009

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A Capital Idea
The info and ideas flying around our Green Intelligent Buildings conference can help your business, but they can help your career, too.

  Robert Beverly, Editor,
Engineered Systems

Here at the top of the month, keep in mind two key positives about the Green Intelligent Buildings conference, hosted March 25-26, presented in partnership with LonMark International and sponsored by Lumisys and Tridium.

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First off, the recently passed economic stimulus package includes significant funds for energy upgrades for schools, hospitals, and other government facilities. Here, you can learn more about these programs and the technologies needed for implementation. Secondly, the conference is conveniently located just outside of Washington DC in Arlington, VA. Easy to get to by air, road, or train.

(OK, and thirdly, we’ve been enacting our own stimulus plan in the form of some appealing discount offers. You can see what’s still in effect at

Seeing as how the lineup has really filled out in recent weeks, let me give you the latest on this spring’s Green Intelligent Buildings Conference.


Let’s hit a few presenter/topic highlights:

- Our keynote speaker, Kathleen Hogan, is the Director of Climate Protection Partnerships for the EPA. That includes programs such as Energy Star, and she'll bring a perspective on present and future public/private efforts in her speech, “The Role of Buildings in a Carbon Solution.”

- Our own columnist Rebecca Ellis and previous ES author and commissioning expert Ron Wilkinson will bring their insights to the "Designing & Commissioning Intelligent Buildings" session.

- Our friend Jack Mc Gowan of Energy Control Inc. returns and is joined by Steve Schaefer of EnergyConnect, Inc. to present and discuss "Powering Intelligent Buildings: Energy And Demand Response."

- Dr. Joe Polastre of Sentilla and Tridium's Ed Merwin join forces to shed light on "Emerging Technologies."

- A co-author of our December cover story, Don MacLauchlan, P.E. of Elara Engineering, will run one of our morning workshops. He’ll also discuss the active façade and advanced building technologies in the article’s subject, the Loyola University’s digital library.

- The always-popular Tommy Russo of Akridge Properties in Washington will return to present the workshop on commercial office spaces.

- Mark Jewell, of Real Win-Win and his ES “Energy Incentives” column, will also be lending his expertise in the Green Intelligent Building Lifecycle Track. That track lives up to its billing by addressing each stage from planning and financing on toward designing and commissioning, up through operations and maintenance plus energy and demand response concerns.

- Over in the technology track, the “Enterprise & Middleware” session will have a look at Quality Attributes Software’s Green Touchscreen and will also include a presentation from Jack Grabowski of American Energy Partners LCC.

- In a special second-day session, learn how the Energy Efficiency Partnership of Greater Washington is facilitating energy efficiency retrofitting of commercial buildings.

As usual, there’s much more on the agenda. Editorial advisor and columnist Paul Ehrlich of Building Intelligence Group is at the front of this field, and he will share moderating duties along with his colleague Jeff Seewald and myself. Before we begin the Technology and Lifecycle tracks, the first morning will include the keynote and hands-on workshops to provide tailored ideas for Education and Commercial-minded attendees. As always, attendees can mix and match sessions from different tracks however they wish.


This year’s GIB event is headed for the new Westin Arlington Gateway in Arlington, VA. As mentioned, it’s convenient to the area’s airports, but it’s also very close to the District if you’d like to work in some springtime historic sightseeing as well.

We all know money is tight everywhere these days, but we also know you will pick up at least one or two new ideas, technologies, and/or contacts at this year's event that will more than justify the expense. The insights and connections you take away will make you more valuable to your own organization, too. And in this climate, that's a true win/win.


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