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Problems and Risks Associated With Green Construction



The benefits of pursuing green design and construction continue to expand, causing many diverse owner/developer groups and project types to embrace these technologies, design elements and operation models.

Moving in the green direction without proper preparation may cause a development to see red in the form of red tape, interruptions and negative bottom-line impacts. In this teleconference, we will be going beyond the basic principles of designing and building green to explore some of the challenges more likely to be encountered when building green, or made more acute when the goal of the project takes on a greenish hue.

From this teleconference you will learn:

  • Risk considerations unique to green design and construction
  • Failure modes that are more likely to be encountered
  • The steps to identify and help to avoid project failures that will impact the green qualification of the development
  • How the design process can help to avoid those failures
  • The necessity of communication among all project participants to enhance achievement of green criteria and standards
  • Elements of design that enhance energy efficiency and reduce environmental impact
  • The direct and hidden costs of a failure to achieve green criteria and standards, and those provisions of the traditional design and construction contract documents that need to be re-evaluated in terms of allocating responsibility of performance
  • Coordination of obligations and the risks and consequences of not achieving the desired result or objective, including unique insurance, indemnity, consequential damage and liability considerations


Upon completion of this courses, students will have developed an understanding of:

  • Short Definitions: Green Building and Sustainability
  • Defining Risk in Construction
  • Liability
  • Risk Avoidance
  • Risk Management
  • Hidden Costs of Failure and Under Performance
  • How Buildings Fail
  • Process
  • Communication Breakdowns
  • Lack of Useful Documentation
  • Right-Minded Application of Technically Ill - Conceived Procedures and Unproven Materials in the Building
  • Physical
  • Structural Failures - Field Practices vs. Design Intent
  • Decay, Mold, Mildew and Leakage
  • Underperformance
  • Maintainability
  • Operational Deviation From Expected
  • Durability
  • Design Process
  • What Matters Most: The Integration of Key Stakeholders
  • Linear Design Paradigm - Prone to Failure and Why
  • Integrated Design Paradigm - Why It's Better
  • ANSI/MTS 1.0 Whole Systems Integrated Process Guide - 2007
  • Role of Design Team
  • Dynamic Project Management
  • Total Commissioning Process - Development of QA, QC and QV Programs
  • Where Things Can Go Wrong in Green Building
  • Sustainable Building Sites
  • New Development vs. Existing Buildings and Brownfields Sites
  • Site Water, Storm Water and Groundwater
  • Soils - Gas Content, Conditions, Soil Admixtures and Amendments
  • Solar Orientation
  • Water Efficiency
  • Landscape Design
  • Efficient Fixtures and Appliances
  • Rainwater Catchment
  • Energy and Atmosphere
  • Air Leakage Control and Moisture Retarders
  • Thermal Insulation
  • Windows and Doors
  • Mechanical - HVAC, Hot Water and Distribution
  • Lighting
  • Commissioning
  • Indoor Environmental Quality
  • Environmental Preferable Building Materials: Promise vs. Performance
  • Innovation in Design
  • Then Who Is Responsible for Failures, Warranty and Call-Backs?
  • Recognizing and Addressing Unique Contractual Implications
  • Identify Roles and Responsibilities of Owner, A/E, Contractors and Subcontractors - Creating and Vetting the Project Team


Student assessment will be done through questions based on the content delivered throughout the course.

course quick facts
course code 382719EAU
cost $219.00
estimated time to
complete course
2 Hours
course materials
365 Days

Bion D. Howard - President and chief consultant with Building Environmental Science & Technology Listed in Who's Who: Environmental Registry, Provides design-support and technical analysis services to builders, architects, designers, code officials, nonprofits and government agencies, Serves on the U.S. Green Building Council LEED Technical Advisory Group for Energy and Atmospheres, Founding member of USGBC in 1993 while at the Alliance to Save Energy in Washington, D.C.

Stanley Sersen, NCARB, LEED AP, RS - Founder and president of ASG, Inc., an architectural consulting firm in Jessup, Maryland, Founder and president of the board of directors of The Green Building Institute, Architect and developer of the EnviroCenter, which in 2005 was the first green executive office development of its kind, Focuses on adaptive reuse and forensic analysis with an emphasis on creating sustainable.