ASHRAE, NEBB consolidation
Collaboration between the two organizations could lead to higher performance standards; ASHRAE seeks input from members.
Today building owners and occupants are demanding that their buildings provide better performance than ever before. Government and private owners have mandated that new buildings and building retrofits be held to a higher performance standard. To date, the industry has not been able to consistently deliver on this mandate.
Over the past two years, ASHRAE has worked to address the needs of the industry and deliver high performance buildings; simultaneously, the National Environmental Balancing Bureau (NEBB) was conducting the same investigation for delivering high performance buildings. In 2010, ASHRAE and NEBB began discussions to determine if collaboration between the two associations could provide a solution to delivering high performance buildings by influencing the design, construction, testing, commissioning and operations of buildings to a high performance standard as a normal building delivery process.
The discussions have centered upon consolidating the organizations in a way that creates a separate organization under the ASHRAE umbrella that concentrates upon performance of the built environment and the associated education, training and certifications for building performance professionals. This organization would encompass all activities that provide the end performance desired by the industry, including design, construction, testing, commissioning, operation and ongoing performance verification. The organization could also align with other industry groups that have similar goals, and ultimately create a significantly enhanced resource for those that seek to deliver high performance buildings.
Accordingly, on May 10, 2011, President Bill Neudorfer of NEBB and Lynn G. Bellenger, 2010-2011 ASHRAE President, formed negotiating teams to determine if a consensus can be achieved on consolidating the two organizations. The opportunities that exist for the consolidated organization are immense. At the same time, much needs to be done to ensure that any consolidation would optimize the strengths of the two organizations.
As talks continue between the two organizations, it is expected that more information will be available on www.ASHRAE.org outlining any consolidation proposals. If you are an ASHRAE member, you are encouraged to send your comments and questions to ashrae.nebb(at)ashrae.org.