Emerging Green Markets
This report summarizes the results of “Emerging Green Markets: Strategies for Electrical Contractors on LEED® and Green Building Projects,” a project completed by a research team at Pennsylvania State University. The goal of the project was to develop an informative set of materials to help electrical contractors better understand the driving forces behind the expanding Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) and green building markets, and to help position the Electrical Contracting (EC) industry to take advantage of opportunities in this market.
The research team completed a variety of activities designed to broadly assess and evaluate emerging opportunities for the electrical contractor on LEED® and green building projects. The team initially collected questionnaires assessing the general knowledge of EC employees and their knowledge of LEED® certification, their perception of their company’s understanding of LEED®, understanding of why a building owner would “go green”, and the EC employee’s view of how green building will affect the future of electrical contractors. Additional research experiences by the Penn State team performed to assess the role of contractors on green projects, trends in green building markets, and opinions of owners were also distilled and refined with an emphasis placed on the electrical contracting perspective.
After gathering information, the research team identified five topics that would best serve the needs of the EC industry:
1. What is a “green” building? An introduction to green buildings and LEED®
2. Market trends: Why are owners going green?
3. LEED® 101: An overview of the USGBC and the LEED® rating system
4. The role of the electrical contractor on green building projects
5. Lessons learned by electrical contractors on green building projects
Each topic was investigated by the research team. This report summarizes the key research findings for each topic, lessons learned, and recommendations for electrical contractors who plan to work on LEED® or green building projects.