Will the Updated California Building Code Foster Sustainable Development?

Friday, September 20, 2019

The 2019 California Building Code goes into effect January 1, 2020. Cities across the Westside and the State are analyzing the new legislation, adopting amendments or “reach codes” to supplement the State Code in order to encourage new buildings to use less energy and water, as well as incorporate better construction practices. Meanwhile green building programs such as LEED Certification, Fitwel Certification, and the Living Building Challenge are on the rise. Developers, architects and engineers are developing creative and innovative approaches to implement sustainable design features, materials, and building systems within the constraints of the various codes. But the question remains: do new processes and requirements create bridges to sustainable development - or layer on more obstacles creating barriers to such development?  
What additional tools, code upgrades, and systems are now available to green leaders in Los Angeles to keep moving toward sustainable design and operations? How should we solve roadblocks—technological constraints, long permitting and approval processes, budget limitations (design, development, materials, and operational budgets), and limited information about proven techniques—that inhibit the potential for innovation?  
This month, WUF brings together a panel of professionals who collaborate on buildings that use less energy and water, adapt to a changing climate, and abandon fossil fuels. This ’Green Team’ will share lessons learned and help us uncover what policies can—and should—be implemented to speed up the process of adapting to our precarious future.   

Mariam Mojdehi
, AIA, LEED AP, Senior Associate,  Frederick Fisher & Partners
Andy Reilman
, Managing Principal, Integral Group
Osama Younan, Executive Officer, LA Department of Building and Safety
Natalie Allan Teear, Vice President, Sustainability and Social Impact, Hudson Pacific Properties

Ted Flanigan, CEO, Ecomotion