It’s time for the Sustainable Design and Development Conference!

The Sustainable Design and Development Conference is just around the corner! A handful of folks from Chuckanut Builders are attending the conference this year and we’re all looking forward to it. At ChuB we often ‘debrief’ after conferences and it’s so fascinating to see what bits of insight, knowledge and inspiration we all walk away with. I thought it would be fun to share some information about the conference with y’all so I asked Amy at Sustainable Connections to put together a quick synopsis, here it is:


We are so excited for this year’s Sustainable Design & Development Conference!  The content, the speakers, the parties… it’s all going to be amazing. The registration list is so full of excellent people in our community and we can’t wait to see everyone there. This year’s conference is a full 2 days and the Keynote Speakers are top notch:  Denis Hayes, CEO of the Bullitt Foundation and founder of Earth Day; Corey Weathers from Common Agenda and Catalyst 2030; and Brad Liljequist from the International Living Future Institute. In addition to these amazing speakers, we’ll have over 20 sessions, workshops & discussions including:

From the Ground Up; Learning from LEED
(BTC/LID Tour)
This tour will focus on ten unique features of the Bellingham Technical College’s LEED Gold Campus Center, starting from the ground plane infiltration raingardens and finishing at the rooftop planting trays and photovoltaic array. The intent of each stop along the way is to highlight new and interesting approaches to LEED and to analyze whether or not the things we do to meet LEED are effective and meaningful to the owner and end users.

From Pilots to Programs
By Dan Wildenhaus from NEEAs Efficient Homes Program
Modern efficient homes may use anywhere from 15 to 85% less energy than a code built home. Programs such as Built Green, ENERGY STAR and Zero Energy Ready Homes reward going 15-40% above code and achieving Net Zero. With all of these savings being projected, the question has persisted: Is there a sweet spot between efficiency and buildability? Dan and three local builders will discuss finding this sweet spot through a series of case studies on homes built in Washington as part of a region wide pilot program. These case studies will look at recommended specifications, lessons learned, data captured, and how learning from the example homes of today can impact the energy efficiency and indoor air quality of tomorrow’s homes.

Building Certified Green Cost Effectively: Lessons hard learned from a speculating homebuilder
By Aaron Fairchild, Chairman and CEO of Green Canopy
Aaron will walk through Green Canopy’s growth curve focusing on mistakes that resulted in improved project management as the key to building certified green, cost effectively. Building certified green homes simply costs more, but can the additional cost be absorbed through better building practices? Green Canopy believes so and is proof positive that a builder can have the cake and the taste, while bitter sweet at times, is overall much more sweet project management practices improves. Laced with self-deprecating humor, Aaron will share project management process from contracts, to development, to quality control, change orders and logging lessons.

If that’s not enough to wet your whistle, you can preview all conference sessions, speaker bios and agendas on our website. We’ll have a few surprises in store for all our tiny house fans, too. Oh, and two full days of content means two awesome receptions. A big thanks to our partners, AIA Northwest Washington and Cascadia Green Building Council for helping to make this the best conference yet. See you there!