I am very excited that my abstract titled, "The Greening of Buildings with Automation," has been accepted for presentation at the CIBSE/ASHRAE Conference to be held September 24-25 in Edinburgh, Scotland (http://xp20.ashrae.org/MEET/scotland2003-menu.htm).

An excerpt from the brochure states: "A Worldwide Gathering: The CIBSE/ASHRAE International Conference brings together professionals from around the world to update, educate, and influence the development of the industry.

The clear objective of the gathering is to ensure the development of better buildings through education, research and communication. The conference title will be 'Building Sustainability, Value and Profit.'

The difficulties lie in how the industry can deliver sustainable buildings and still remain profitable and deliver value to clients. The conference is designed to tackle this complex issue and offers advice and guidance as well as practical examples of how the building industry is achieving these goals."

Sustainability Goes Global

I am presently submitting a complete manuscript to the conference for approval, and it is an opportunity to report how our recent industry changes allow us to provide linkage and sustainability in the new data-driven world.

In addition, I have also been accepted to submit a paper on a similar topic to the Asia Pacific Conference on Built Environment 2003 (www.ashrae.org.hk/apc2003/).

From that conference's website:

"World-wide there is increasing focus on making buildings more sustainable, in social, economic and environmental terms. With populations migrating to cities, growth in the next three decades in SE Asia and elsewhere will be towards the creation of mega-cities. Buildings will need to be responsive to human needs, yet reduce their environmental loadings."

I believe that our greatly changed large building automation industry is the key to many of the required solutions, yet we consistently fail to tell the world.

The meshing of broadband, telephony, and building automation has created a powerful new virtual architectural fabric. I call this fabric "Enviromation," a combination of the words environment, communication, and automation.

A New Definition for the Times

This new fabric provides the greatest strengths of all building material: a new powerful connection to the building occupants. There are additional strengths in the fact that this new virtual fabric can ensure that building energy is purchased at the lowest cost from the environmentally correct source.

Once the energy arrives at the building, expert operators can ensure that this energy is used to create the greatest comfort for the least environmental impact. To ensure that the original system design intent is achieved, this same virtual fabric can provide real-time feedback and interaction to the original designers. The ongoing virtual interaction with the building by both occupants and designers will lead to improved sustainability while increasing the overall real and perceived values.

Opportunities evolve daily to use building automation intelligently, not just simply as a connector of the myriad of "brute force" comfort generation systems. To achieve this renaissance, the building automation industry must become the leader on global green building teams and show how improving building intelligence, as well as improving occupant and even architectural interaction, can enhance the new style of environment-friendly buildings. We can bring the passive designs alive with the necessary ingredient of "intelligent interaction."

Rapid automation evolution will occur with these new hybrid green buildings. The low energy impact of the original raw materials required to create BAS, coupled with its potential power, creates the greenest of all building materials. Automation's ability to provide mammoth changes to buildings with only grams of substance, plus the ability to be easily reconfigured to grow and adapt with the building, make it the essential backbone of leading green building design. Building automation has evolved from just the control of equipment to include a higher level of occupant interaction and even architectural interaction.

The acceptance of many new communication and automation concepts has radically changed the function of our large commercial buildings. Office hotelling has allowed the sharing of expensive office buildings with an increased number of telecommunicating occupants. To effectively manage this phenomenon, coordination of everything is required, (e.g., phones, workstations, data links, security access, etc.). Occupants also must have the ability to interact virtually. The greenest of buildings extends beyond sharing office space; it includes sharing the total transportation and support infrastructures while making home units more efficient.

Please help me take our message to the world by sharing your thoughts on this subject with me. ES