LISA Movement October ’18 Update: Sustainability

New College Grads Find Sustainability Jobs in the Construction Industry

If you’ve spent time with recent college grads, likely you’ve pick up a priority they typically share as a group: a commitment to a sustainable lifestyle. Also, consider that San Francisco Bay Area is arguably the city/region at the forefront of sustainable technologies and design. I call this a perfect fit.

This month we are exploring trends that we think draw young professionals to meaningful sustainability careers. We believe these careers are attractive and plentiful in the AEC industry.

Please share this newsletter with your colleagues and friends as we work together to engage AEC’s burgeoning talent needs nationally. Also, contact me to see how you can get involved with the LISA Movement.

Malcolm Kaufman, Principal
(415) 730-7772


7 Reasons San Francisco Bay Area Leads the Way in Sustainability

1. California’s Title 24 is among the strictest energy efficiency standards for new construction and is contributing to a growing culture of sustainability and energy efficiency.

2. High performance buildings deliver a high return on investment: Health and wellness industry has become a $1T construction industry. “The Case for High Performance Buildings” points out that by creating better work environments businesses can see profits by millions during the course of a standard 10-year lease. The savings are derived primarily from increased retention, productivity and reduced absenteeism of employees. (1)

3. Land recycling and reuse: Because of the demand for land in SF Bay Area, owners and developers are more willing to take on environmental liabilities. Technology innovations are producing solutions to address these liabilities. (2)

4. Purple Pipe Installation: Water recycling codes are increasing the prevalence of gray water for irrigation and purple pipe installations for toilet water conservation. (3)

5. Underfloor air distribution (UFAD): Taking advantage of the outside cool air, the Salesforce Tower is utilizing this technology to cool this massive building for free.

6. Exposed Concrete: Energy efficiency methods make use of passive and exposed concrete. The concrete allows for the storage of warmth during the day and release at night. Clark Pacific director of corporate development Roy Griffith points out that “active surfaces can be added to the concrete for healthy building systems.” (4)

7. Smart Software: The Internet of Things in Smart Buildings (BIoT) is having a transformative effect on smart building automation and control, helping buildings run more efficiently, disrupting long established business models, and offering significant new opportunities to improve the efficiency of buildings and raise employee productivity. (5)

Sustainability & Profitability

In “The Financial Case for High Performance Buildings” commissioned by the San Francisco commercial real estate group stok (, the study analyzed 60 robust research studies to examine the combined benefits of sustainability in occupant productivity, retention, and wellness. The study’s findings are compelling.

Combined benefits per High Performance Building/Space* were due to occupant productivity, retention, and wellness benefits, which specifically are:

  • $3,395* Annual Profit Per Employee
  • $18.56* Annual Profit Per Square Foot

(*Based on assumption of company in 150,000 SF building or tenant space, with 183 SF per employee. See Figure 8 (p. 9) at the link below for a complete list of baseline assumptions in calculations.)

These findings are good news for college grads and point to new opportunities for purpose-oriented career treks. For more information on this report, click HERE.

“Companies have realized that retaining and attracting top talent means making sure workplaces incorporate the environmentally friendly values of the next generation of workers and have elements that increase productivity and wellness based on the latest scientific research.” (Warren Neilson, stok Commercial Real Estate, San Francisco and Denver). (6)

2018-10-16T06:33:25+00:00 Building, deconstructed., Happenings|