February 7, 2005

BOMA Quebec's new "green" program evaluates, recognizes ecological performance

Jean-Pierre Marion, president of the Building Owners and Managers Association of Quebec (BOMA Quebec) recently presented the details of a new environmental program, Aim Green (Visez Vert), to more than 200 association members. On hand for the announcement as well were Quebec Environment Minister Thomas Mulcair and Alan DeSousa, a member of Montreal council's executive committee with responsibility for sustainable development.

The primary objective of this industry-led, voluntary initiative is to recognize the environmental protection efforts of building owners and managers. Designed to respond to the growing environmental concerns expressed by tenants, Aim Green is being directed toward owners and managers of commercial and institutional parks as well as individual buildings.

The program's evaluation criteria are divided among five building management sectors: resources (energy and drinking water); construction waste and recycling; construction materials; the interior environment; and tenant awareness of "green" management.

Marion noted that as environmental issues are becoming of increasing concern among the general population, a building's ecological performance will soon be an important selection criterion for prospective commercial building tenants. He predicted that Aim Green certification will become a marketing tool not to be ignored by any serious building manager.

The program does more than simply evaluate a building; it accompanies the manager through a process of continuous improvement, indicating best practices for each evaluation criterion and providing several reference sources for further information on each of the criteria examined.

Once a verification process has been carried out by an independent third party, the building can qualify for certification for a three-year term. At the end of the term the owner or manager will have to apply for certification renewal. Marion said he anticipates certifying up to 40 buildings during the program's first year.

BOMA Quebec will be holding information workshops on the Aim Green program on February 15 in Montreal and February 17 in Quebec City. Details on the workshops and/or the program itself are available on BOMA Quebec's Web site, www.boma-quebec.org or from Dominique Lambert, 514/879-9779 or 514/862-9862.

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