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User-Friendly Manual on Green Building Operations and Maintenance

Written by  Lisa Kopochinski

GREEN_BLDGThis fall Siemens Industry, Inc., announced that the Green Building Operations and Maintenance Manual: A Guide for Public Housing Authorities, developed in collaboration with Green Seal, Inc. It is now available to the public online and free of charge at www.greeningpublichousing.com or www.greenseal.org/GreenBuildingOM.aspx.

The Green Building Operations & Maintenance Manual provides public housing authorities and other building owners with a comprehensive resource for reducing the use of energy, water and toxic chemicals and for operating facilities in a more sustainable, healthy manner. A selection of public housing authorities funded the manual through an American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Green Seal, and Siemens collaborated to develop the manual and customize it for regions of the U.S., with geographically-specific guidelines and information.

“For the first time,” says Mike Kearney, senior director for Siemens Industry, Inc. Building Technologies Division, “public housing authorities and building owners have access to a peer-developed source that provides practical, actionable guidance in an easy-touse format that transcends the ‘how’ and reveals ‘why’ these recommended actions are important for the longevity of the housing developments they manage. Over time, the practices outlined in the manual will help both residents and their surrounding communities improve their quality of life.”

Although developed specifically for public housing authorities, any building owner or maintenance staff can take advantage of the guidance to implement more sustainable, energy efficient, and healthier practices.

“The Green Building Operations and Maintenance Manual is unique in that no other green operations resource focuses on multiunit housing or provides such comprehensive, detailed guidance for free. The guidance is more than academic; these are practices facilities managers can start implementing today to take a significant step toward a sustainable society,” says Dr. Arthur B. Weissman, president and CEO of Green Seal.

The manual covers a broad range of facility maintenance and management best practices including HVAC systems, plumbing fixtures, lighting, landscaping and recycling. Unit maintenance is addressed, as well as a section providing suggestions and tools on ways building owners and operators can engage residents and encourage them to participate in improving the sustainability of the communities in which they live.

Green Seal, a non-profit based in Washington D.C., has been actively identifying and promoting sustainability in the marketplace and helping organizations be greener in real and effective ways since 1989. Green Seal standards are life cycle-based and developed in an open, transparent process. The independent organization offers third-party certification to Green Seal standards, avoiding any conflict of interest that may arise from recommending products or consulting with applicants. Green Seal’s Institutional Greening program provides government agencies, businesses, and institutions assistance and tools to protect the health and environment of employees, occupants, and their communities. For more information, visit www.greenseal.org.

Siemens Industry, Inc. is the U.S. affiliate of Siemens’ global Industry Sector business—the world’s leading supplier of production, transportation and building technology solutions. The company’s integrated hardware and software technologies enable comprehensive industry-specific solutions for industrial and infrastructure providers to increase their productivity, sustainability and profitability. The industry sector includes six divisions: building technologies, industry automation, industry solutions, mobility, drive technologies and Osram Sylvania.

A division of Siemens Industry, Inc., Building Technologies is a leading provider of energy and environmental solutions, building controls, electrical distribution equipment, fire safety and security systems solutions. Building Technologies provides a full range of services and solutions from more than 100 locations coast-to-coast, enabling America’s buildings to be more comfortable, secure and environmentally friendly as well as less costly to operate. Worldwide, it has nearly 42,000 employees and operates from more than 500 locations in 51 countries.

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