THE SECOND WAVE OF PEOPLE AND PLANET SUSTAINABILITY
For the past 25 years, through the work of US Green Building Council and LEED, there was a laser focus on energy efﬁciency, water conservation and waste reduction ‒ things we can clearly measure, but they address only one part of the sustainability equation, which has been mostly about“saving the planet”. I call this the“First Wave of sustainability,”where we’ve focused on protection and minimization̶protecting the environment, protecting people, and minimizing the negative impact of buildings on both.
At the International WELL Building Institute, we’re using the WELL Building Standard to advance the Second Wave, which is all about advancing and enhancing the health and wellness of people by making and using buildings and communities to intentionally improve human health. And sustainability’s Second Wave is only possible because we’ve reached critical mass on ﬁrst wave outcomes.
We must embrace this second wave so that our deﬁnitions of sustainable building include the sustainability of people as a matter of course ‒ not an unintended consequence. It’s in this holistic approach that green building becomes not just a market transformation tool, but the basis for a human transformation tool as well.
Rick Fedrizzi joined the International WELL Building Institute (IWBI) as chairman and CEO in Nov. 2016, bringing his global environmental track record and keen business insight to IWBI’s work to advance human health through better buildings and communities. Rick is also founding chair of the USGBC and former CEO of both USGBC and of Green Business Certiﬁcation Inc. (GBCI),