Working towards my degree in Sustainability has opened my eyes to so many wonderful things. Tuesday 1/3/11, I had the opportunity to hear Jerry Burbridge, who works with Customs Border Patrol and Rusty Hodapp with DFW airport, speak about sustainability. I learn something new each class, but after listening to the speakers, I thought, “WoW!!” Mr. Burbridge seemed to be a man who wears many hats. LEED certified, real estate, architect, broker…I could only wish to one day be so successful! He spoke of a 40 acre campus in McAllen, TX that he assisted in the sustainable design and an office building in Euless, TX that houses about 125 workers and is LEED silver. I was also introduced to the term “6 sided”. Top, bottom and 4 sides. Soil, Building, Land and Furniture….6,6,6….and 6!(He had to add the extra 6, which we see why :)) When inspecting, he demonstrate this method. He may start each inspection a different way (right then left of left then right) but he will hit all 6 areas. I learned the importance of ESA, Environmental Side assessment. This document is very important to a buyer/renters decision-making process. This will show all the uses of the property…IMPORTANT!! And also MSDS. I am familiar with the sheets, however I was not aware of the importance for sustainable purposes until the example of the lady and her apartments fertilizers. Which she thought was from her work environment. During my studies of sustainability, I have heard life-cycle costing. The example Mr Burbridge shared was with dual flush (2) and single flush (1) example. (the parenthesis are an inside silly from class) During his study, he concluded that the dual flush saved over 11,000 gallons compared to the single flush with little or no monetary difference. He also emphasised 7 main LEED categories, which include…1. sustainable site 2. water efficiency(ie black/grey) 3. energy atmosphere 4. materials and resources 5. indoor environmental quality 6. innovation and design and 7.regional priorities. I will keep these in my back pocket…they are crucial to my studies! One last piece of information Jerry shared was about Federal government and their sustainable buildings. A building can lose their certification the next year if they do not maintain their sustainable standards.
Mr. Hodapp, who is the Vice President & sustainability Officer at DFW airport, was very informative. I had no idea about the sustainable initiative at the airport. DFW is recognized as a Low cost Large Hub Airport. Mr. Hodapp explained the drive for sustainability but he also explained TRIP (Terminal Renewal Improvement Plan) which will increase the sustainanle efforts at the airport. Sustainable programs at the airport include everything from ambassador programs and community outreach to energy-efficient programs and continuous commissioning. With the program, 3.4M was invested and 8.9M in energy savings, 13 month positive project cashflow!!! He also spoke of the reduced energy consumption, 45.5 million kWh and 167.000 Mbtu and reduced emissions of >21 tons NOx emissions and >17,000 tons CO2 emissions. I would have never guessed the airport was so sustainable! The fire station that services the airport and surrounding cities, is a LEED silver building. The water conservation efforts have created a 52% reduction in water use in terminal A and C. 60 Million gallon year savings!!! Whoah! DFW airport is the 1st airport to become EPA watersense partner. I do not work there, but I will for sure brag about it!! Because we all know Dallas, TEXAS is the BEST! haha! Water reuse programs are in creation. The program when completed, will reduce portable h2o consumption by over 300 million gallons annually. Cant wait! I learned that DFW is the largest CNG fleet user in the area….another point for DFW!! 😉 The future of sustainability in the airport will consist of external sustainable reports, high level sustainable metrics, integrated sustainable communication strategies, sustainable workshops at DFW and sustainable partnerships with key business partners and stakeholders. I have learned a lot about stakeholders and their importance!
Applying interdisciplinary studies to sustainability, has opened my eyes to the MANY stakeholders involved.
I was introduced to different terms and definitions to terms I was slightly familiar with. I will definitely use “6 sides” when I decide to purchase home or even when I visit the next sustainable location. “Trusted with Tomorrow” airport sustainability program, not only puts a smile on my face, but also a feeling of hope! I feel all companies, in some way, maybe small, are creating a form of a sustainable environment. Hearing the speakers I had the privilege to hear, created excitement for big business and sustainability. It can Happen!!