WASHINGTON /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ – The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) recently announced 15 of its medical centers have been cited by the Green Building Initiative for their efforts to achieve sustainable energy.
"We continue to take steps to assess and reduce our environmental impact," says Eric K. Shinseki, Secretary of Veterans Affairs. "Ensuring the sustainability of our facilities across the country gives us energy efficient buildings to accomplish our primary mission—serving Veterans with the best care."
As a federal agency, VA is required to have 15 percent of its buildings incorporate sustainable practices by 2015 in accordance with Executive Order 13423. The recent Green Globe certifications raise VA's sustainable building inventory and contribute toward reaching the department's goals.
The Green Globes system is an independent ratings system based on environmental assessments. The ratings criteria include building energy efficiency, low greenhouse gas emissions, conservation and protection of water, comprehensive recycling of waste, high indoor air quality, reduced environmental impact of products and materials, employee use of public transportation, and many other factors.
Green Globes and Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) are the only two environmental building rating systems developed by organizations that are accredited by the American National Standards Institute. The top rating under the Green Globes system is four green globes.
"Reaching the goal of 21 third-party certifications in 2010 will make VA a leading example of 'green' achievement," adds Shinseki. "We will proudly reach and surpass the 15 percent requirement before 2015."
Source: U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (www.va.gov)
For additional information, contact the VA Office of Public Affairs: (202) 461-7600.