The Sustainable Buildings Industry Council (SBIC), in Washington, D.C., takes a holistic approach in its mission to create energy-efficient buildings. The group works with the federal government and institutional and commercial designers and builders. The SBIC’s residential involvement revolves around the three major green building guidelines and certifications: Home Performance with Energy Star, U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED for Homes, and the National Association of Home Builders’ National Green Building Standard.

Through its affiliates, the SBIC offers training that focuses on those programs. Karla Donnelly, LEED AP Homes Senior Sustainability Specialist at SBIC affiliate Steven Winter Associates (SWA), based in Norwalk, Conn., says that if a remodeling group or association wants to set up training, it should contact the SBIC or local affiliates of the three programs to find out what type of expertise they have in that locale.

SWA’s training concentrates on the similarities between the programs. “We want builders to just pick one and do something sustainable instead of it being a competition,” Donnelly says. “Get down to the basics of any program to build a good envelope — then add on other things like certification.” Donnelly recommends that remodelers educate themselves about energy-efficient practices because criteria from these programs are often included in building code updates. She says the SBIC is a good resource because of its depth of knowledge across different categories.

SBIC executive director Bud DeFlaviis says that the cost of the training varies depending on materials, the presenter, and travel fees.

—Nina Patel, senior editor, REMODELING.