Leadership Letter: Go Green!
April 1st, 2009

Green Building, 2009

This spring I had the privilege of attending my son’s college graduation from Appalachian State University in Boone, North Carolina. His major was Appropriate Technology, which is the study of wind power, solar power, biodiesel and similar green technologies. Who knew five years ago (yes, he graduated on the five-year plan) when he selected that curriculum how much the emphasis on sustainability would grow throughout government, industry and popular culture. Now green building is having a major impact on the tile industry.

The CTDA is committed to educating our members, their customers, and consumers about green building. The association has enjoyed a great deal of success with our relatively new Green Building Committee. The committee is approaching green building from a number of different angles. Here are just a few of their current initiatives:

  • Developing a white paper on the sustainability of ceramic tile, which we can all use to help promote the green aspects of tile to architects, designers and building owners.
  • Developing an educational promotion piece appropriate for consumers.
  • Developing green building pages for the CTDA website, www.ctdahome.org.

A number of committee members are also participating in the United States Green Building Council (USGBC) on the Chapter Level in their own cities. This is a wonderful way to network with others committed to green building and to stay well-informed on a topic that is constantly evolving. It is, of course, also a great way to promote tile—and your business—as a green product at the local level. You can learn more about the USGBC, including the location of chapters, by going to their website, www.usgbc.org.

Going green in our businesses
The recent Coverings exhibition and trade show in Chicago provided numerous opportunities to learn more about green initiatives in business. I attended an inspiring seminar on green practices for companies with many great ideas for our business. At our company we are turning off lights and appliances when not needed, including the lights in our warehouse with skylights. We are also working on reducing unnecessary printing and using mugs for coffee instead of disposable cups. I’m sure that with some creative thinking we could all make changes that would add up to quite an impact.

My wife and I stayed in Chicago for the weekend after Coverings. We were able to participate in a fascinating green building tour of downtown Chicago put on by the Chicago Architecture Foundation. The city of Chicago is definitely an inspirational leader in construction sustainability with rooftop green spaces to reduce heat, natural lighting to reduce electrical consumption, and use of recycled materials.

As a tile industry leader, CTDA is committed to being at the forefront of education on ceramic tile sustainability and LEED qualification. CTDA will also be a leader in promoting the green aspects of ceramic tile to the construction and architectural community as well as the overall flooring industry.

Those of us in the tile business can all do our part to educate ourselves and others on the great, inherent sustainability of ceramic tile. The Ceramic Tile Distributors Association will be there to help.

Go green!

Rob Henry
CTDA President

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