GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Grand Rapids Mayor Rosalynn Bliss announced on Jan. 27, 2022, that the city would be joining 32 state and local governments in the National Building Performance Standard (BPS) Coalition.
The coalition was originally launched by the White House Council on Environmental Quality. Grand Rapids has now committed to exploring implementing building performance standards and complementary policies and programs across Grand Rapids.
Efforts will drive investment into building retrofits and jobs, creating healthier buildings, lower housing, and lower energy costs.
Authorities report that the coalition aligns with the City’s Equitable, Healthy and Zero Carbon Building Initiative (E.H.Zero) launched in the summer of 2021 alongside the U.S. Green Building Council of West Michigan and the Urban Core Collective.
“We recognize that decarbonizing our buildings is one of the most important pathways to reducing community-wide carbon emissions,” Mayor Bliss said. “It is critical that equity be a dual priority embedded into any building performance standards or other high performing building programs designed for our community. Participation in the White House BPS Coalition further strengthens our E.H.Zero commitments.”
“Upgrading and retrofitting buildings to increase clean energy sources and reduce overall energy use can dramatically reduce these harmful emissions,” Alison Waske Sutter, sustainability officer with the City of Grand Rapids, said.” At the same time, energy retrofits and upgrades can be leveraged to concurrently improve a building’s health and resilience for its occupants and surrounding community, while generating jobs and increased local economic investment.”
According to Sutter the Coalition and E.H.Zero aim to increase community and local stakeholder engagement to explore co-designing equitable building performance standards and complementary policies and programs.
“We are eager for the opportunity to support city and state leaders representing the vanguard of innovative climate policy, and joining this National Building Performance Standards Coalition,” said Mark Chambers, senior director for building emissions and community resilience at the White House Council on Environmental Quality.
More information about the coalition can be found on nationalBPSCoalition.org.