Volume 8, Issue 6 - June 2007

WDMA Opens Up

Eco-Friendly in the Real World
by Joel Hoiland

We’ve all heard the rhetoric: environmental responsibility, sustainability, green design and best practices. Green is now mainstream, everyone wants to do the right thing and protect the earth’s resources. But what does this really mean to our industry? How can we embrace change, move forward and provide solutions? These are the challenges facing our industry as we balance environmental stewardship with competitive product manufacturing.

Sorting It All Out
Knowledge of programs such as Leadership in Energy and Environ-mental Design® (LEED) and the Green Globes™ System are now an essential part of doing business. Questions such as integrating environmentally-friendly materials and obtaining certification credits are currently overwhelming the industry. 

WDMA has established the environmental stewardship committee as a clearinghouse for environmental issues including governmental and regulatory requirements, certification, ratings and standards development. It is our intention to develop the standards and certifications relative to the industry and educate our members on the implications.

Green Education
The key to successful green design is finding the common ground that promotes and rewards environmental responsibility with products and processes that are competitive in the marketplace. Consumer demand will continue to be the driving force in satisfying and adhering to regulatory requirements and the industry should expect a dramatic increase in eco-friendly material requirements. 

WDMA is focused on turning ideas into action. The 2007 Summer Conference will educate and inform our membership about key topics that impact their businesses directly. Speakers for the conference include John Engler, president, NAM (former governor of Michigan), and William Sutton, nominated as assistant secretary for manufacturing and services. These two distinguished speakers recognize the complex demands facing the manufacturing industry and will offer their unique insights and knowledge of government and the global business climate. 

In addition, Blaine Brownell, architect and author of Transmaterial, will speak on new material technologies and their role in creating new products for sustainable, energy efficient results. 

Additional sessions will examine environmental sustainability, the economic outlook and a panel session will address topics of interest to our industry. Our goal for the 2007 conference is to provide practical and tangible solutions and give our members the competitive edge. 

Our mission at WDMA is to remain at the forefront of green issues that directly impact our industry. It is in everyone’s best interest to protect the earth’s resources.

Joel Hoiland is the president of the Window and Door Manufacturers Association based in Des Plaines, Ill. He may be reached at jhoiland@wdma.com. Mr. Hoiland’s opinions are solely his own and not necessarily those of this magazine.


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