GBC '98 - 2000 Process Overview
Table of content
 Summary  Benefits to the Industry
 The Conference - October 2000  The Performance Assessment Process
 Goals and Objectives  GBTool Overview
GBC 2000 Summary

Green Building Challenge is an international collaborative effort to develop a building environmental assessment tool that exposes and addresses controversial aspects of building performance and from which the participating countries can selectively draw ideas to either incorporate into or modify their own tools.
Green Building Challenge 2000 is a continuation of the GBC '98 process and an 18-month period of review, modification and testing of the GBC Assessment Framework and Green Building Tool (GBTool) - the operational software for the assessment framework. This current round of the GBC process culminated in the presentation of the assessed buildings at the Sustainable Building 2000 Conference (SB 2000) held in Maastrict, The Netherlands, October 23-25th 2000.

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The GBC 2000 Conference

The joint international conference SB/GBC2000 presented a unique opportunity for participants to learn details about some of the world's finest green buildings with the inevitable expansion to the building sustainability.

green  Green Building Performance Assessments
The presentation and analysis of the buildings that have undergone in-depth assessments were a main feature of the GBC 2000 part of the conference.

green  Analysis of the assessment framework
The assessment framework  represents a major milestone in the development of our understanding of building performance issues. The framework has been analyzed, scrutinized and its features discussed by those who developed it and those who had their projects assessed.

green  Technical papers
Technical papers were presesented that relate directly to the GBC 2000 themes. The papers addressed a wide range of issues of  importance to green building and its assessment,  including performance target-setting, regional and climatic considerations,  technologies and the characteristics of current performance assessment systems.

green  Poster projects
Additional green building projects were exhibited in a unique poster sessions.


The Performance Assessment Process

The assessment framework being used to assess the selected projects is being developed by a team of international experts under the direction of an International Framework Committee. The final GBC2000 version of GBTool in MS Excel format is available on this CD as a part of the assessment together with the Volume 1, a detailed background information on the GBC process in MS Word format.
In January 2000, national teams have begun the work of adapting the core assessment framework to the conditions of their own countries and regions.  The regionally adapted systems reflect issues such as regional energy and environmental priorities, cost-effectiveness and urban planning issues.

National teams are developing benchmarks for the assessment process.  These are being established by developing hypothetical reference buildings and practices that reflect current typical practice relevant to the buildings being assessed.

Buildings to be assessed are being selected by national teams to represent "best practices", and conform to key criteria of the assessment framework. National teams will supervise the information gathering process about these buildings, including a detailed characterization of the building, a description of the process followed in its design, construction and operation and  planned building operation procedures. The teams will then undertake energy simulations using accepted computer programs like DOE-2 or EE4 (in Canada).
 A central quality control mechanism will ensure that national teams use relatively consistent assumptions.
The heart of the process is the detailed assessment of 2 or more "best practice" buildings from each participating countries resulting in at least 36 detailed case studies.  The national teams will assess selected buildings relative to the benchmarks already established.
The results will be scored, weighted and graphically represented, all assisted by a software program developed especially for the purpose. To maximize comparability and to keep the process manageable, the building types assessed will be limited to mid-size office or residential buildings, and schools in both "new" and "retrofit" types.  


Goals and Objectives

The three general goals for the Green Building Challenge process are:

  • To advance the state-of-the-art in building environmental performance assessment methodologies.
  • To maintain a watching brief on sustainability issues to ascertain their relevance to "green" building in general, and to the content and structuring of building environmental assessment methods in particular.
  • Sponsor conferences that promote exchange between the building environmental research community and building practitioners and showcase the performance assessments of environmentally progressive buildings.

These goals reflect the acknowledged success of the GBC process in having significantly increased the understanding of building environmental assessment through international collaboration. In addition to the above general goals, two specific objectives of GBC 2000 process are:

  • To develop an internationally accepted generic framework that can be used to compare existing building environmental assessment methods and used by others to produce regionally based industry systems.
  • To expand the scope of the GBC Assessment Framework from green building to include environmental sustainability issues and to facilitate international comparisons of the environmental performance of buildings.

.Other objectives:

green To test new methods of assessing building performance
green To showcase "best-practice" examples of green buildings around the world
green To document the successful elements of individual green buildings
green To offer direction to participating countries in the development of regionally-sensitive assessment models
green To promote an international exchange of information,  ideas and green building technologies