Citation
SEE Evaluation, A Comprehensive Sustainability Certification for the Construction Industry

Material Information

Title:
SEE Evaluation, A Comprehensive Sustainability Certification for the Construction Industry
Creator:
Banting, John Robert
Place of Publication:
[Gainesville, Fla.]
Florida
Publisher:
University of Florida
Publication Date:
Language:
english
Physical Description:
1 online resource (95 p.)

Thesis/Dissertation Information

Degree:
Master's ( M.S.B.C.)
Degree Grantor:
University of Florida
Degree Disciplines:
Building Construction
Committee Chair:
Kibert, Charles J.
Committee Co-Chair:
Issa, R. Raymond
Committee Members:
Hinze, Jimmie W.
Graduation Date:
12/14/2007

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords:
Business structures ( jstor )
Construction industries ( jstor )
Employment ( jstor )
Environmental policy ( jstor )
Evaluation points ( jstor )
Labor ( jstor )
Personnel evaluation ( jstor )
Recycling ( jstor )
Shareholders ( jstor )
Sustainable development ( jstor )
Building Construction -- Dissertations, Academic -- UF
certification, construction, environmental, evaluation, industry, leed, policy, see, social, sustainable
Genre:
bibliography ( marcgt )
theses ( marcgt )
government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent) ( marcgt )
born-digital ( sobekcm )
Electronic Thesis or Dissertation
Building Construction thesis, M.S.B.C.

Notes

Abstract:
The majority of sustainable practices in the construction industry are based on the construction product, caused by the popularity of the Leadership in Environmentally Efficient Design (LEED) program, the primary division of the United States Green Building Council. The LEED program certifies the construction product, which has a profound effect on the built environment but, overlooks many aspects of the construction industry that could improve from sustainable practices. Currently, there is not a construction certification that addresses the social, economic, and environmental aspects of sustainability through the company's policies. The purpose of the research was to develop a sustainable certification system that evaluates construction companies based on their social, economic, and environmental performance. Laws, standards, certifications, and various documents helped to develop a set of policies that equally evaluate small, medium, and large construction companies. The Social, Economic, and Environmental (SEE) Evaluation is tailored to the construction industry, identifying specific areas of improvement towards sustainability. Construction companies are evaluated on topics developed beneath the three pronged, social, economic, and environmental framework. Each policy focuses on a topic, with the goal to create a sustainable construction industry that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. The SEE Evaluation is one step on the path towards sustainable development for an industry that is in desperate need for change. ( en )
General Note:
In the series University of Florida Digital Collections.
General Note:
Includes vita.
Bibliography:
Includes bibliographical references.
Source of Description:
Description based on online resource; title from PDF title page.
Source of Description:
This bibliographic record is available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication. The University of Florida Libraries, as creator of this bibliographic record, has waived all rights to it worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights, to the extent allowed by law.
Thesis:
Thesis (M.S.B.C.)--University of Florida, 2007.
Local:
Adviser: Kibert, Charles J.
Local:
Co-adviser: Issa, R. Raymond.
Statement of Responsibility:
by John Robert Banting.

Record Information

Source Institution:
UFRGP
Rights Management:
Copyright Banting, John Robert. Permission granted to the University of Florida to digitize, archive and distribute this item for non-profit research and educational purposes. Any reuse of this item in excess of fair use or other copyright exemptions requires permission of the copyright holder.
Classification:
LD1780 2007 ( lcc )

Downloads

This item has the following downloads:


Full Text





the evolution of social responsibility in the construction industry. The research begins with

American laws and progresses to the most recent standards and certifieations.

2.1.1.1 Davis-Bacon Act of 1931

The Davis-Bacon Act of 1931 was the first bill to be passed which advanced employee

rights in the United States. The Davis-Bacon Act requires all contractors and subcontractors

working on government construction proj ects pay their employees the prevailing wage which is

determined by the Secretary of Labor. The Act guarantees that all employees who work on a

public proj ect will be paid the local prevailing wage including educational, pension, and health

benefits. Contractors and subcontractors that are found guilty of not paying the prevailing wages

on government j obs will be replaced. The contractor or subcontractor is held responsible for all

costs incurred during the replacement process. If a contractor or subcontractor does not abide by

the act, then they will be placed on a list that will prohibit them from bidding on a public proj ect.

If the contractor is unable to pay back charges owed to the workers, the comptroller is allowed to

pay the workers, and the government has the power to sue the contractor and sureties whether or

not the workers agreed to the pay given to them by the contractor. The President of the United

States has the power to suspend the act at a time of emergency.

2.1.1.2 Walsh-Healy Act of 1936

The Walsh-Healy Act of 1936 was designed to require contractors performing government

work to pay a minimum wage. The Walsh- Healy Act set basic standards for employees working

on government contracts exceeding $10,000. The Secretary of Labor determines the minimum

wage. Child labor and convict labor was outlawed on government contracts. The act set the

standard of an eight-hour day and forty-hour work week. The Walsh-Healy Act established that

an employee was entitled to be paid time and a half for overtime. The Walsh-Healey Public

Contracts Act (PCA) applies to contractors with contracts in excess of $10,000 for the









three sectors through the use of performance indicators. Performance indicators enable

companies to directly compare a performance to another company's performance or their prior

performance. The reports establish these methods of measuring performance in all three areas of

sustainability. The sustainable reports help to identify the company's deficiencies and areas of

improvement. Topics formed underneath the three pronged framework are addressed to properly

complete a triple bottom line report. The term "triple bottom line" describes an accounting

principle that accounts for the impact of the social, economic and environmental performance of

a company. Triple bottom line report measures the sustainability of a company. Sustainable

reporting identifies a company's performance and impact in the three areas of sustainability

instead of the current practice which only focuses on economic performance.

2.4.2.1 Global Reporting Initiative, G3

The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) is a recent addition to the sustainable reporting

organization realm. The GRI came into development to enable accurate and proper sustainable

reporting. The GRI was originated from a not for profit sustainable reporting proj ect. In 2000 the

GRI released its first set of sustainability reporting guidelines. The guidelines for sustainable

reporting form a reporting framework for all companies, large and small, to follow. The

reporting framework of the GRI is composed of the reporting guidelines, sector supplements and

indicator protocols. Since 2000, companies have been using the GRI format to release reports

based on the prescribed reporting guidelines. In 2006 the GRI released the G3, the primary

reporting document of the GRI. The G3 guidelines outline topics that are important to

sustainable reporting. The guidelines address many different topics all contained within the

sustainable framework and rate the companies by established performance indicators. The goal

of the GRI is to have reports on social, economic, and environmental performance by all

companies in all sectors. The reporting is similar to the currently practiced standard accounting









Harassment is a current and ongoing problem in the construction industry and can create a

negative effect on the company's atmosphere. Harassment can directly effect production and can

be the source of many negative business issues in the construction industry. The Ethical Business

Conduct Guidelines address these issues and set a tone for what is expected from the employees.

The purpose of the ethical business conduct guidelines is to ensure that employees act in the

proper ethical manner which is prescribed in the policy terms.

Policy terms. The applicant company must adopt the Ethical Business Conduct Guidelines

defined by the SEE Evaluation. Employees must acknowledge their obligation to the company

through reading and signing the Ethical Business Conduct Guidelines. The company's ethical

business conduct guidelines may include additional information, tailored to the company. The

supplementary information added to the ethical business conduct guidelines must not interfere or

conflict with the core policies set by the SEE Evaluation. The Ethical Business Conduct

Guidelines must be carefully read, acknowledged, signed, and abided by all employees of the

company. The core ethical business conduct guidelines are as follows:

* All employees must be honest in all dealings with their company of employment and its
operations.

* All employees must operate with integrity while interacting with their company of
employment.

* All employees must not place themselves or others in harm's way.

* All employees must respect and care for the environment.

* All employees must keep personal life and work separate.

* All employees must respect the identities of all individuals.

4.2.1.2 Substance Abuse Policy 1.1.2 (prerequisite)

A safe and healthy working environment is one of the most important aspects that are

controlled by the construction company. There are no excuses for any type of substance abuse by









the company helps to meet the employees' needs and betters the performance of the company.

CSR is a process of continual improvement that is closely related to social aspect of sustainable

development. Corporate social responsibility is the continuing commitment by business to

behave ethically and contribute to economic development while improving the quality of life of

the workforce and their families as well as of the local community and society at large (WBCSD

1999).

2.1.2.1 Socially responsible corporations

The increasing popularity of being socially responsible has taken large corporations by

storm. Starbucks and Toshiba are just a few of the corporations that are committed to social

responsibility. With the abundance of negative attention of corporations in the early nineties

caused by corruption, companies have attempted to find a way to separate and define themselves

as a socially responsible company. Starbucks and Toshiba are defining their company's

reputation through third party evaluations and Corporate Social Responsibility reports.

Companies have begun to evaluate their social performance through employee satisfaction

surveys and other quantifiable methods.

2.1.2.2 International Organization for Standardization, ISO 26000

The International Organization for Standardization, the world leader in developing

international standards, will be coming out with a document on social responsibility in the near

future. The document will be named the ISO 26000 or ISO SR. The ISO 26000 is expected to be

released in 2008 and will focus on defining standards for corporate social responsibility.

2.2 Economic Dimension

The economic and social dimensions are closely related. The economic dimension contains

much of the information gathered for the social section of the literature review. Employees are

directly related to the economic performance and requirements of a company. Current economic










4.2.2.6 Daycare Policy 1.2.6 (10 points)

The Daycare Policy is defines a daycare policy for employees' children. The Daycare

Policy is worth 10 points. The policy sets guidelines that enable employees who would typically

be unable to afford daycare to obtain daycare for their children. Daycare has been proven to offer

a positive environment for children and fosters an improved quality of living for the development

of children.

Purpose. Daycare fosters a safe environment for children while parents work. Childcare is

a difficult task, especially for a single working parent. Employees who cannot provide

satisfactory daycare for their children are eligible for additional daycare aid prescribed by the

Daycare Policy.

Policy terms. The applicant company must provide daycare aid for employees who are

unable to afford satisfactory daycare. Employees must apply for supplemental daycare aid. The

company must provide supplemental funds for applicant employees who are proven unable to

provide their children with daycare caused by insufficient funds. Supplemental daycare funds

will be established on a case by case basis. In addition to providing additional funds for daycare

the employer must also select one of the options listed below to receive the Daycare Policy

points.

Option one is to provide a list of the five closest daycare centers in relation to the j ob site or

main office, depending on the location where the individual works. Option two is to form a

company daycare center for employees' children. The daycare center can actually serve as a

profit center for the company. The daycare facility must be able to safely house all of the

employees' children and charge fair daycare rates.









LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS

CSR Corporate social responsibility

EMAS Eco-management and audit scheme

EMR Emergency modification rating

EPA Environmental protection agency

GEMI Global environmental management initiative

GRI Global reporting initiative

IISD International institute for sustainable development

ISO International organization for standardization

LEED Leadership in environment efficiency design

SAI Social accountability international

USGBC United states green building council

WBCSD World business for sustainable development

WCED World commission on environment and development

WSSD World summit on sustainable development









sustainable practices into industries and governments. Each document created by the IISD

addresses a particular topic to advance sustainable development.

2.4.1.6 World Business Council for Sustainable Development

The World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) is a world wide

organization made up of large corporations dedicated to sustainable development. After the Rio

de Janeiro Earth Summit in 1992, the Business Council for Sustainable Development was

formed. The WBCSD was created in 1995 in a merger of the Business Council for Sustainable

Development and the World Industry Council for the Environment. The focus of the WBCSD is

to gain and share knowledge about eco-efficiency and sustainable development. The executive

committee decides the members of the organization by evaluating their dedication to sustainable

development. The election for membership is vague and undefined. Companies share

information about their environmental performance and advice on their improvements. The

WBCSD works with governments and non governmental organizations to encourage sustainable

development. The WBCSD divides their information into four areas of focus. The areas of focus

are energy and climate, development, business role, and ecosystems. The WBCSD has many

published papers, each identifying an area of sustainable development.

2.4.2 Sustainable Reporting

The concept of sustainable reporting is new concept that addresses the three primary

aspects of sustainability. The concept of sustainable reporting addresses the social, economic,

and environmental performance of a company. Shareholders, employees, customers, and the

public use these sustainable reports to evaluate the performance of corporations. Proper reporting

practices for sustainable development have been identified and described by different

organizations to help promote sustainable practices. Current standard reporting practices only

address the economic aspect. Sustainable reporting identifies a company's performance in all









environment. The LEED credits must meet the recycled content requirements set by the

International Standards Organization Document, ISO 14021. The contractor has the ability to

select specified materials that have a high recycled content unless specified otherwise by the

architect. The requirements of credit MR Credit 4. 1 are to use materials with recycled content

such that the sum of post-consumer recycled content plus one half of the preconsumer content

constitutes at least 10% based on cost of the total value of the materials in the proj ect (USGBC

2005). The recycled content value of a material assembly shall be determined by weight. The

recycled fraction of the assembly is then multiplied by the cost of assembly to determine the

recycled content value. Mechanical, electrical, and plumbing components and specialty items

such as elevators shall not be included in this calculation. Only include materials permanently

installed (USGBC 2005).

MR Credit 5.1 Regional Materials: 10% and MR Credit 5.2 Regional Materials: 20% are

LEED points that specify an amount of materials that must be extracted, processed, and

manufactured regionally. The LEED credits limit the distance materials are extracted, processed,

and manufactured from the construction site. The purpose of the credits is to reduce the amount

of carbon dioxide produced by transportation. The requirements set by the credit are building

materials or products must be extracted, processed, and manufactured within five hundred miles

of the j ob site for a minimum of 10% to 20% of the total material cost. The calculation does not

include mechanical, electrical, or plumbing components.

MR Credit 7: Certified Wood offers one point to encourage sustainable wood harvesting

practices. Fifty percent of all wood based materials used on the proj ect must be certified in

accordance with the Forest Stewardship Council Principles for Certified Wood. All wood that is

permanently placed on site must be included in the calculation.










Purpose. Volunteering time establishes an ethical responsibility to give back to the

community. It is important increase the conditions of the surrounding environment to promote

sustainable development. The company will give back to the community and be recognized for

the positive efforts it has made. Volunteering helps the community and helps to identify the

company as a reputable and ethical organization.

Policy terms. The Volunteerism Policy requires the company to form an employee

volunteer program. The volunteer program must form relationships with volunteer companies

and identify the not for profit companies with which it is involved. It is required that the heads of

each department in the construction company must volunteer at least 50 hours a year. It is

important for these leaders of the company to serve as an example for the employees. It is

recommended that each employee volunteer at least sixteen hours a year, but this is not

mandatory. The volunteer program will allow employees two days off of work to complete the

recommended minimum volunteer hours. If an employee chooses to volunteer over the

recommended sixteen hours, the construction company does not have any obligation to give

more time off to the volunteer.

4.3 SEE Evaluation, Economic Division

The Economic Division of the SEE Evaluation as one sections composed of two policies.

The first policy addresses the obligation of the company to be transparent. The second policy

addresses the obligation of the company to its shareholders. These two topics are closely related

to each other but define different advances toward sustainable development. The economic

performance and values of the company are identified in Economic Division.

4.3.1 Obligation to Stakeholders

The Obligation to Stakeholders Section addresses a company's responsibility to any party

that is affected by the company's actions; this includes the stockholder, employee, subcontractor,









and community. The applicant company must acknowledge its power to effectively influence the

surrounding stakeholders. The company has the ability to positively affect the current social,

economic, and environmental performance of other companies through the promotion of

sustainable development.

4.3.1.2 Transparency Policy 2.1.1 (prerequisite)

The Transparency Policy is a prerequisite of the SEE Evaluation' s framework. The policy

requires the company disclose its financial performance to all stakeholders. The policy defines

the economic requirements the company must operate by, disclosing all performance information

to the company's shareholders.

Purpose. The purpose of the Transparency Policy is to hold construction companies

accountable though openly published reports. Openly published reports help to fight corruption

and misappropriated funds. All shareholders must be able to access published reports that

identifies and reveals information about the company's social, economic, and environmental

performance .

Policy terms. All of the company performance must be transparent. The organization must

make the company's performance available to all employees, clients, and the public though

openly published performance reports. The company must produce a biannual report disclosing

the required information to be certified by the SEE Evaluation.

4.3.1.2 Shareholders Statement Policy 2.1.2 (prerequisite)

The Shareholders Statement Policy identifies the company's dedication to adhere to

sustainable principles and abide by the policies defined in SEE Evaluation's framework.

Shareholders may feel obligated to invest in a social, economic, and environmental responsible

company, the obligation to shareholder statement helps to identify the company's stance towards

sustainable development.









Resources, Indoor Environmental Air Quality, and Innovation and Design. The maj ority of

viable information from LEED was found in the Materials and Resources (MR) division and the

Indoor Environmental Quality division (EQ). These two sections are the primary applicable areas

of research. The construction company is able to make decisions in these two sections. The other

sectors are heavily dependent upon the architect and owner's decisions.

MR Credit 2.1 & 2.2 Construction Waste Management demand a certain percentage of

waste is diverted from disposal. The Construction Waste Management Plan diverts 50% or 75%

of waste depending on the attempted credit. The intent of these credits is to divert construction,

demolition, and land clearing debris from disposal in landfills and incinerators. Redirect

recyclable recovered resources back to the manufacturing process. Redirect reusable materials to

appropriate sites (USGBC 2005). Credit 2.1 requires 50% waste diversion whereas Credit 2.2

increases the amount of waste diversion to 75%. The goals of MR Credit 2. 1 and 2.2 are to

recycle and/or salvage at non-hazardous construction and demolition debris. The company must

develop and implement a construction waste management plan that, at a minimum, identifies the

materials to be diverted from disposal and whether the materials will be sorted onsite or

commingled. Excavated soil and land-clearing debris do not contribute to this credit.

Calculations can be done by weight or volume, but must be consistent throughout (USGBC

2005).

MR Credit 4.1 Recycled Content: 10% and MR Credit 4.2 Recycled Content: 20% are

credits that specify a particular amount of construction materials must be made of recycled

materials. The intent of the Recycled Content Credit is to reduce the demand for extraction and

processing of virgin materials by using materials that are made of recycled content. This credit

reduces the amount of energy used to extract raw materials and the impact made on the natural










the contractor. Design-build and construction management firms were not considered for the

formation of the SEE Evaluation. The research examines previous documents created by

organizations, governments, and the United Nations to gain knowledge about the goals of

sustainable development. Construction companies were not considered a primary source of

information. The research was guided by organizations that publish sustainable development

documents and specialize in the advancement of sustainable development. Development of each

SEE Evaluation topic and the implementation of the third party certification for the construction

industry are explored.

1.2 Outline

The formation of the framework is a detailed process that begins with the exploration of all

documents dealing with any of the three aspects of sustainable development. Laws, documents,

standards, and certifieations that deal with any division of sustainable development will be

researched. Research will be gathered and dissected for information that directly pertains to the

construction industry. The literature review describes the creation of organizations and formation

of documents pertaining to sustainable development. The documents will be studied to assist in

the development of the SEE Evaluation' s policies. The research will help to explain how each

policy will help to create a sustainable development. The framework's policies will be guided by

the research, but are not limited to the research information. The research will act as a

cornerstone source to substantiate the evaluation.

The certification will be divided into three primary divisions: social, economic and

environmental, creating the acronym SEE. The three divisions of the framework are divided into

further detail by separating the maj or divisions into sections. Sections are defined areas of

interest that pertain to construction. Each section is composed of Policies. Policies can either be

prerequisites or points that pertain to a specific topic. Each topic is composed of two paragraphs,












TABLE OF CONTENTS


page

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS .............. ...............4.....


LIST OF FIGURES .............. ...............8.....


LI ST OF AB BREVIAT IONS ................. ...............9.................


LIST OF TERMS ................. ...............10........... ....


AB S TRAC T ............._. .......... ..............._ 1 1..


CHAPTER


1 INTRODUCTION ................. ...............13.......... ......


1.1 Building Measurement System ................. ...............14...............
1.1.1 Purpose .............. ...............15....
1.1.2 Obj ective. ................. ...............16...._ ___....
1.1.3 Scope Limitations ................. ...............16............
1.2 O utline .............. ...............17....


2 LITERATURE REVIEW ................. ...............19....... .....


2. 1 Social Dimension ............... ....... ........ .. ... .. ... .... .........1
2.1.1 Social Certifications, Standards, and Applicable Laws................ .................2
2. 1.1.1 Davis-Bacon Act of 1931 ................ ...............21...........
2. 1.1.2 Walsh-Healy Act of 1936............... ...............21..
2.1.1.3 Fair Labor Standard Act of 1938............... ...............22..
2. 1.1.4 Equal Pay Act of 1963 ................. ...............22...........
2. 1.1.5 Civil Rights Act of 1964 .................. .... ......... ...............23.
2. 1.1.6 Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 ................. ............ .........23
2. 1.1.7 Public Works Employment Act of 1977 ................. .......... ...............23
2.1.1.8 Social Accountability International, SA 8000............... ..................2
2. 1.2 Corporate Social Responsibility ................. ...............27...............
2. 1.2. 1 Socially responsible corporations. ................. ........ .......... ............... .....2
2. 1.2.2 International Organization for Standardization, ISO 26000 ........................28
2.2 Economic Dimension............... ............. .. ... .. .. .............2
2.2. 1 History of Economic Responsibility in the Construction Industry ................... .....29
2.2.2 Transparency .............. ...............29....
2.3 Environmental Dimension ................. ............... .. ........ ...........2
2.3.1 History of Environmental Responsibility in Construction ............__.................30
2.3.2 Environmental Certifications, Programs, Standards, and Laws ...........................30
2.3.2.1 Environmental Protection Agency .............. ...............31....
2.3.2.2 Energy Star ................... .... ......... ........ ....... ...... .............3
2.3.2.3 International Organization for Standardization, ISO 14000 ........................33










eighth of our water, and transform land that provides valuable ecological resources (USGBC 2).

The primary existing environmental certifieations focus on the product of construction and

neglect the construction company. The environmental research explores documents created by

independent organizations, the United States government, and the United Nations.

2.3.1 History of Environmental Responsibility in Construction

Environmental responsibility is a fairly new concept in the United States but people are

becoming aware that there are limited resources available for consumption. The United States

government has identified and acknowledged the importance of protecting the environment. The

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) was established by the United States government in

1970 to help protect and preserve the environment. The EPA has been the primary control of

environmental policies and practices throughout American history, until recent times. The

environment has become a popular topic in America and has influenced the construction

industry. The construction industry is a large consumer of natural resources and energy. With the

rise sustainable construction, the construction industry has become inundated with environmental

certifieations. One of the most recognized construction certifications is the United States Green

Building Council's (USGBC) Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED)

program. The program attempts to advance and improve the quality of the environment through

improving the building product. This sustainable certification influences construction products

and avoids the process and policies of construction companies.

2.3.2 Environmental Certifications, Programs, Standards, and Laws

In recent times, environmentally friendly and responsible certification systems have

become increasingly popular because of global warming and environmental awareness. There are

also many laws enforcing environmental protection. Current laws do not eliminate or control

pollution to the extent needed to create a sustainable society. The construction industry has an










Purpose. The proper treatment of employees is essential for sustainable development to

occur; therefore employment conditions and employee rights are an important social aspect of

the framework. The construction industry is known for its harsh working conditions and unfair

treatment of employees. The Employment Policy addresses concerns of employees and develops

suitable standards for employees. Fair employment practices in the construction industry are

emphasized in the SEE Evaluation. The evaluation examines and acknowledges particular

negative social aspects of the construction industry and their need for improvement.

The construction industry is one of the largest employers of short-term illegal workers. An

estimated 1.4 million unauthorized workers are employed in the construction industry. This

accounts for about 12% of the construction work force. Many construction companies employ

undocumented workers. Many undocumented employees are paid below minimum wages and

face harsh and unfair labor conditions. The use of illegal labor is prohibited in the SEE

Evaluation.

The Affirmative Action subpolicy addresses issues that arise out of discrimination on the

basis of race, color, sex, age, religion, national origin, disability, or veteran status. Construction

companies must be equal opportunity employers in all phases of employment. Companies have

an ethical and legal obligation to provide a work environment in which employment

opportunities are open to all qualified individuals without discrimination. These standards must

be maintained throughout all stages of employment.

All employees must be paid fair labor rates that match or exceed industry standards. Fair

labor wages ensure employees will be able to provide for themselves and their dependents to

create a sustainable development. The living wage policy requires employers to pay wages that

equal or are higher than the state and federal minimum wage. The living wage policy establishes









evaluation identifies areas of improvement that have previously been unidentified or

unacknowledged.

The advantage of the third party certification is that it ensures all certified companies are

upholding the SEE policies and operating in a proper manner. The third party certification takes

the responsibility of reporting out of the construction companies' hands and creates a level

playing field for all certified companies. The independent certification's overall goal is to ensure

construction companies' policies and performances are in line with sustainable practices.

1.1.2 Objective

The obj ective of the study is to design a third party sustainable certification system

developed specifically for construction companies. The SEE Evaluation will assess construction

companies on the social, economic, and environmental aspects of sustainability: Policies directly

pertaining to construction will be designed beneath the three pronged framework. The defined

policies are limited to the control and capabilities of the contractor' s role. The company must

meet the policy's requirements to receive the associated points. Subcategories will identify areas

of the construction industry that could be improved to advance sustainable development. The

policies will be derived from previous and existing third party verification systems, standards,

and laws and then tailored to the construction industry. The primary obj ectives of the research

are to

* design a framework that enables construction companies to be properly evaluated on their
social, economic, and environmental performance;

* based on the framework, develop a third party evaluation system, the (SEE) Evaluation.

1.1.3 Scope Limitations

The research investigates the primary aspects of sustainability when applied to the

construction industry. The research is limited to the capabilities and decision making power of










*areas that present fire risks, including material storage areas, lay down areas, and areas
with combustible materials.

4.2.3 Obligations to the Subcontracted

The Obligations to the Subcontracted Section explores the relationship of the contractor to

vendors, suppliers, and subcontractors. The Obligation to the Subcontracted Section establishes

policies of conduct that the construction company must follow in relation to subcontracted. The

ethical policies help to develop a sustainable society.

4.2.3.1 Supplier Selection Policy 1.3.1 (prerequisite)

The Supplier Selection Policy is an easily attainable prerequisite. The Policy only requires

the company abide by an ethical set of policies in its dealings with subcontractors, suppliers, and

vendors. The company must adopt and abide by an ethical set of policies to be eligible for

certification.

Purpose. It is imperative that the applicant construction companies operate to the highest

ethical values. All subcontractors must be given a fair chance to perform work in the open

competitive market. The selection of subcontractors due to unethical motives is unacceptable.

The Supplier Selection Policy creates fair market competition, helping to advance the economy.

Policy terms. Procurement decisions must be made based on factors such as quality,

service, price, delivery, and best value. Care must be taken to avoid conflicts and the appearance

of partiality. Kickbacks are strictly prohibited and favoritism to subcontractors for unethical

motives is strictly forbidden.

4.2.3.1 Supplier Diversity Policy 1.3.2 (15 points)

The Supplier Diversity Policy stipulates a required amount of suppliers and subcontractor

must be minorities. The 15 point policy requires that the company uses minority suppliers for 2%









American history. The social rights in construction begin with American laws. American labor

laws were developed through the twentieth century to continually advance the rights of the

American workforce. Laws were developed to advocate the fair treatment of all employees.

Throughout the history of the United States, government regulations and company policies

have been primary controls for social justice. Third party certifieations are a recent development

that has advanced employee rights. Over the past thirty years, there have been advances in

corporate social responsibility through the development of third party certifieations. Third party

certification organizations have the ability to set the current social standards in America. The

social dimension of the research is defined by American laws, third party verification systems,

and corporate policies.

2.1.1 Social Certifications, Standards, and Applicable Laws

In the United States there have been many laws, standards, and certifieations created to

protect the rights of individuals. Safety, minimum wage, child labor, gender and race

discrimination are all issues addressed in American labor laws. The government has an integral

role in the protection of employees in the United States. Laws have been created to ensure that

employees earn fair wages and have equal opportunity. In the past, social justice was reliant

upon laws to regulate the quality of working conditions. There has recently been a transition to

corporate social responsibility. Recently companies have considered it a moral obligation to

provide employees with a defined basic quality of life. The current status of the social equality is

based on a company's willingness to be evaluated by third party certifications and form

corporate social responsibility standards and policies. The seal of a third party evaluation enables

an employer to differentiate themselves from other companies. A brief history of laws, standards,

and certifications based on social justice in the United States is explored in order to understand









CHAPTER 4
THE SEE EVALUATION

The SEE Evaluation is an impartial sustainable third party certification system designed to

evaluate construction companies. Previous laws, standards, and certifieations were examined to

obtain insight into the development of the SEE Evaluation. The SEE Evaluation measures

various aspects of a company, not the buildings that they might construct. The evaluation has

been specifically tailored to address specific deficiencies in the construction industry. The

defined policies equally evaluate small, medium, and large construction companies. It is

imperative to the success of the SEE Evaluation that the developed policies be clear, concise, and

understandable. The policies must establish exactly what is required from the company. Figure

4-1 is an outlined preview of the SEE Evaluation policy framework.

The certification is divided into three divisions: social, economic, and environmental. Each

division is composed of specific sections that include prerequisites and topic points. Each section

describes a general area of the construction industry that needs to be addressed. Every policy is

divided into two paragraphs identifying the purpose and policy terms. The company must adhere

to the prerequisites to be certified by the SEE Evaluation. The policy points are optional points

that companies may or may not choose to obtain. The applicant company must attain a sufficient

amount of points to obtain a specified level of certification. The more point attained the higher

the level of certification. The evaluation gives prescriptive measures and sets requirements that

must be met instead of setting goals that do not require conformance. The applicant company

must comply with the selected SEE Evaluation policies but is not limited by them. Additional

information can be created by the applicant company and is encouraged as long as it does not

conflict with any central goals of the evaluation' s prerequisites, selected policies, and laws. The

applicant companies may or may not currently practice the defined policies. The evaluation only









Each proj ect that follows the guidelines will be awarded the allowed points established by

the proj ect costs. The proj ect points will then be divided by the total points established by the

entire amount of work in progress. The calculation will give a fair representation of current

proj ects in progress. The calculation establishes a weighted importance of the proj ect so that an

applicant company has a fair chance to obtain the topic point. If the proj ect does not have air

conditioning in the design, the proj ect will receive the certifiable points in relation to value

identified by the proj ect value indicator.

4.2.2.8 Smoking Policy 1.2.8 (5 points)

The Smoking Policy is an easily attainable 5 point policy that increases healthy behavior

habits and discourages smoking. The policy defines parameters for smoking areas to protect the

health of nonparticipating individuals. Smoking is detrimental to the health of participants and

nonp arti ci pants .

Purpose. Smoking is known to be a maj or cause of cancer and directly affects physical

health. Smoking habits consume valuable operation time and can have a direct or indirect

negative effect on personnel. To protect the health of individuals, the company will abide by the

requirements set in the Smoking Policy to receive the points.

Policy terms. The Smoking Policy is established to protect the health and safety. The

policy defines areas and limitations of smoking. Designated smoking areas will be established at

the office and at every construction site. A defined area must be a well ventilated space that

includes a receptacle to dispose of cigarette remains. The policy prohibits smoking in areas

shared by the public and areas defined but not limited to

* shared employee work spaces;

* entrances into main office buildings, site offices, and trailers;










requires that the applicant comply with all prerequisites and selected points if they are to be

certified by the SEE Evaluation.

4.1 Company Statement

The goal of the SEE Evaluation is to make the construction industry as sustainable as

possible. The path to sustainability is a path of trial and error, attempting to effectively alter the

way business is currently conducted. It is important to share knowledge with one another about

innovative ideas and concepts that further the movement towards sustainable development.

4.1.1 Company Reporting

It is important for a company to report its performance in all three aspects of sustainability.

The applicant company must adopt the Global Reporting Initiative's (GRI) G3 reporting policy

to indicate its performance and ensure it is performing to the best of its capabilities. The G3 will

enable companies to identify deficiencies and areas of improvement through the use of the G3's

established performance indicators. The SEE Evaluation uses the G3 report to monitor certified

companies performance to ensure conformance to the applicable polices.

4.1.2 Company Communication

Construction companies need to share and publicize their successes and failures to help

other companies make proper and informed decisions. An online forum will allow companies to

post their failures and successes. It is important that information be shared. Innovative concepts

that help companies obtain points or help to further their social, economic, and environmental

responsibility should be posted. Companies should not retain information that could be utilized

by other companies to support unethical motives. The postings should be accessible to all

construction companies for examination. Postings could include information on sustainable ideas

or information on an environmentally friendly supplier. Any information considered beneficial to

sustainable development should be shared in postings. The shared information forms an









Abstract of Thesis Presented to the Graduate School
of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the
Requirements for the Degree of Master of Science in Building Construction

SEE EVALUATION, A COMPREHENSIVE SUSTAINABILITY CERTIFICATION FOR
THE CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY

By

John Robert Banting

December 2007

Chair: Charles J. Kibert
Cochair: R. Raymond Issa
Major: Building Construction

The maj ority of sustainable practices in the construction industry are based on the

construction product, caused by the popularity of the Leadership in Environmentally Efficient

Design (LEED) program, the primary division of the United States Green Building Council. The

LEED program certifies the construction product, which has a profound effect on the built

environment but, overlooks many aspects of the construction industry that could improve from

sustainable practices. Currently, there is not a construction certification that addresses the social,

economic, and environmental aspects of sustainability through the company's policies.

The purpose of the research was to develop a sustainable certification system that evaluates

construction companies based on their social, economic, and environmental performance. Laws,

standards, certifications, and various documents helped to develop a set of policies that equally

evaluate small, medium, and large construction companies. The Social, Economic, and

Environmental (SEE) Evaluation is tailored to the construction industry, identifying specific

areas of improvement towards sustainability. Construction companies are evaluated on topics

developed beneath the three pronged, social, economic, and environmental framework. Each

policy focuses on a topic, with the goal to create a sustainable construction industry that meets










address uncertainties, promoting sustainable development, preventing ozone depletion, and

atmospheric pollution. Paragraph 9. 11 states, the basic and ultimate obj ective of promoting

sustainable development in the second program area is to reduce adverse effects on the

atmosphere from the energy sector by promoting policies or programs, as appropriate, to increase

the contribution of environmentally sound and cost effective energy systems, particularly new

and renewable ones, through less polluting and more efficient energy production, transmission,

distribution and use (United Nations 2005). The sustainable development program includes

obj ectives to identify and promote the use of economically viable and environmentally sound

energy sources.

The second chapter beneath the promoting sustainable development topic is transportation.

The basic objective of sustainable transportation is to develop and promote cost effective policies

or programs to reduce the amount of harmful emissions. The third focal point of promoting

sustainable development is industrial development. The purpose of the topic is to reduce

materials and resource consumption by using environmentally friendly technologies in the

industrial sector. Program C, Preventing stratospheric ozone depletion focus on the elimination

of man made CFC, halons, and similar substances through the ratification of the 1990 Montreal

Protocol. The fourth program is transboundry atmospheric pollution. The goal for the fourth

section is to develop and apply pollution control and measurement technologies for stationary

and mobile sources of air pollution and to develop alternative environmentally sound

technologies (United Nations 2005). The goal of the ninth chapter is to reduce air pollution and

give insight to applicable steps to create a sustainable environment. Chapter 19 of Agenda 21

addresses environmentally responsible management of toxic chemicals. The topic is divided into

six program areas. The fourth program area establishes a risk reduction program for the










Purpose. Construction is the most dangerous industry outside of fishing in the United

States. Employees, as company's most important asset, should be provided a safe work place and

be given the opportunity to become knowledgeable about safety issues. Falls, electrocutions,

vehicle rollovers, personnel run over by vehicles, and excavation cave-ins are the five leading

causes of death in construction. It is important for employees to be knowledgeable about these

unsafe situations and the need to protect themselves from these dangers. It is imperative that a

safe working environment be provided for all employees in the construction industry.

Safety in the construction industry is already an important concern of many construction

companies. Good safety practices produce low experience modification ratings. Safe

construction companies have lower safety experience modification ratings due to their dedication

to creating safe environments for their employees. The less recordable injuries, lost time, and

deaths, the lower the construction company's Experience Modification Rating (EMR) is. The

lower the EMR, the more money the construction company saves.

Jobsite specific safety analysis is another subcategory addressed in the SEE Evaluation

framework. The jobsite specific safety analysis is a process that analyzes and develops site

specific safety plans that address specific issues of concern on particular sites. The analysis

enables all on-site workers to be aware of specific safety concerns and conduct safe working

practices. The analysis directly deals with situations and tasks that will be performed on a

specific construction site. All employees and subcontractors should be aware of the j obsite

specific safety plan and should receive adequate instruction on the implementation of the plan.

The subcontractor plays a significant role in creating a safe jobsite. If a construction

company exercises extreme safety practices but neglects to address the issue of safety with the

subcontractors, the j obsite is not necessarily safe. Therefore, subcontractor safety is as much a









interconnected network of socially, economically, and environmentally responsible construction

companies attempting to improve sustainable development.

4.1.3 Company Advances

Leaders of the construction industry adopt new technologies that help them to operate

more efficiently. It is important these technologies be adopted by certified companies. The use of

building information modeling is an example of rewarding company advancement. The use of

technology is continually increasing and advancing the construction industry. Companies that

adopt and evolve new technologies enable them to operate more efficiently. This subsequently is

beneficial to the environment. A company that adopts and embraces new technologies is given

an advantage over those companies that are resistant to change. The SEE Evaluation encourages

technological advances and use of technology to enhance efficiency.

4.2 SEE Evaluation, Social Division

The Social Division of the framework explores the relationship of the construction

company with its employees. The framework defines the company's manner of operations,

observing equality and fairness in every aspect. The roles and responsibilities of the employee,

employer, subcontractor, client, and community are the relationships identified and investigated

in the Social Division of the SEE Evaluation. The evaluation observes the company's operations

and sets polices by which employees must operate. The social segment of the certification

evaluates factors of human equality and rights of individuals. The Social Division of the SEE

Evaluation's goal is to create a proper and fair construction industry where employees,

companies, clients, and communities will obtain a mutually beneficial relationship.

To ensure the satisfaction of all individuals, satisfaction surveys will be distributed

biannually. The biannual satisfaction survey will help to quantify the social performance of the

company. Performance indicators for the social aspect of the evaluation are very difficult to










Purpose. Construction companies should promote sustainability in every aspect possible,

including their building product. Company renovations, additions, and buildings need to be

environmentally friendly to improve the quality and performance of the built environment to the

extent the construction can control.

Policy terms. Any new renovations, interior renovations, or buildings completed for the

use of the construction company must be either certified by Green Globes or LEED to ensure the

company is being environmentally responsible in their decisions. All renovations must be as

environmentally friendly as possible, including environmentally friendly materials and efficient

operating performance of building systems.

4.4.1.2Compact Florescent Light Bulbs and Energy Star Policy 3.1.2 (prerequisite)

The policy is an environmental prerequisite that must be met for certification. Any new

appliance purchased for the company use must be environmentally friendly. Dedicated

construction companies are responsible to environment. The use of energy efficient products

help to decrease the negative impact a company creates on the environment.

Purpose. The Energy Star program certifies over fifty different product categories. The

Energy Star label identifies energy efficient products. Energy Star certified products help a

business to operate more efficiently than with standard products. This means the product will

save the company money and energy. Energy Star products are an intelligent and ethical

investment. Energy Star certified products and energy efficient lights are both simple steps a

company can take to become more sustainable. These efficient products consume less electricity

and reduce the amount of greenhouse gases produced.

Policy terms. The certified company must abide by the guidelines defined by the CFL and

Energy Star Policy:

*All new appliances purchased by the company must be Energy Star certified.









CHAPTER 6
CONCULSIONS AND RECO1V1VENDATIONS

The SEE Evaluation was created to advance sustainable development in the construction

industry. The evaluation encourages construction companies to alter their current operating

practices and policies and to evolve into a socially, economically, and environmentally

responsible organization. The framework of the evaluation must also adapt to advance

sustainable practices. The current framework provides a set of guidelines by which the

construction industry should operate in order to advance sustainable development but will evolve

with the advances of sustainability.

6.1 Future of the SEE Evaluation

The SEE Evaluation has tremendous potential to grow into a large third party certification

system for construction companies. The framework will grow and adapt as the wealth of

knowledge about sustainable practices increases. The SEE Evaluation's framework has the

capacity to be altered and fine tuned in order to operate to its optimum ability. The certification

is designed to be adaptable to new demands and suggestions of the construction industry, other

sustainable organizations, and newly created laws. The evaluation is part of growing process.

Without adoptability the nature the certification is quickly outdated due to the expanding

knowledge of sustainability. The evaluation must adopt to properly grow with time. It must alter

and mutate to new prescribed policies for continual improvement of the construction industry but

is important the evaluation continue to have defined policies to ensure quality performance of

construction companies. The framework will change in the future to meet and define new

policies that properly identify the demands of a sustainable culture.










enormous effect on the natural and built environment and through sustainable practice can have a

positive effect on the environment. The environmental research examines current and previous

programs, laws, standards, and certifications to gain insight into the protection of the

environment.

2.3.2.1 Environmental Protection Agency

Laws and regulations are two major tools in protecting the environment. Congress passed a

1970s law that created the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The EPA was created to

govern the United States in its environmental practices. The EPA was a response to the public

demand for cleaner water, air, and land. The primary goal of the EPA is to protect human health

and the environment. The EPA is involved in many aspects of the environment; it develops and

enforces environmental regulations, performs environmental research, and offers finical

assistance for specialized environmental programs. The Envirosense Program created by the

EPA provides information on pollution prevention and the Waste Minimization Program focuses

on waste reduction. There are EPA programs that focus on air, pesticides, pollution prevention,

toxics and chemicals, water, waste, and recycling. Many of the EPA topics affect the manner in

which construction companies operate. Since 1970, the EPA has been working for a cleaner,

healthier environment for America.

Characterization of Building related Construction and Demolition Debris in the United

States is a maj or report completed for the EPA (Franklin Associates 1998). The EPA

commissioned a report by Franklin Associates to examine construction and demolition debris in

the United States. The report is broken into generation and management sections. The generation

and management sections are divided by residential and nonresidential construction. The report

was commissioned by the EPA to have an understanding of how much waste was being

generated by construction, demolition, and renovation and what types of waste were being









The Equal Pay Act of 1963 corrects the unethical practice of paying females less for performing

the same job as their male counterparts.

2.1.1.5 Civil Rights Act of 1964

President Lyndon Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act of 1964 into law on July 2, 1964.

Title VI, and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act have a profound affect on the construction

industry. Title VI of the Act protects persons from discrimination on the basis of race, color, and

national origin in programs and activities. Title VII focuses on outlawing discrimination in

employment in any business on the basis of race, religion, sex, or national origin. The law also

outlaws retaliation against employees who oppose unlawful discrimination.

2.1.1.6 Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970

The government' s concern for workplace safety resulted in the creation of the

Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970. The Occupational Safety and Health

Administration (OSHA) was created by this act. OSHA focuses on creating a safe work

environment in eight maj or industry categories. The construction industry is one of the eight

maj or categories. The federal law applies to private and public employers. The intent of OSHA is

to prevent work-related injuries, illnesses, and deaths. OSHA will fine or shut down jobs because

of incompliant practices. OSHA ensures that all workers have the opportunity to work in a safe,

hazard-free environment. The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 was created to

provide a safe work environment for all employees.

2.1.1.7 Public Works Employment Act of 1977

Public Works Employment Act of 1977 supports the development of small disadvantaged

businesses. The act addresses goals for minority and women owned businesses. A specific

percentage goal for procurement from these businesses is addressed in the Public Works

Employment Act. The Disadvantaged Business Enterprises Program attempts to ensure that









Policy terms. The Reusable Cup Policy states the applicant company will provide every

employee with a permanent cup. The cup should be labeled and uniquely identified for each

employee. The container should be composed of an environmentally friendly material, include a

lid and have insulative properties. If the policy, is implemented all employees must be informed

of the reasons they should use reusable cups instead of Styrofoam and disposable cups. The

information should include the amount of waste that disposable cups generate and the amount of

waste that is being reduced because of using a reusable cups.

4.4.2 Site Obligation

The Site Obligation Section addresses environmental issues that directly pertain to the

construction site. The Site Obligation Section develops policies that will be maintained on the

jobsite. The Site Obligations addressed in the framework are all issues over which the

construction company controls and has the ability to change.

4.4.2.1 Waste Diversion Policy 3.2.1 (25 points)

Waste diversion is an important topic in the construction industry has a profound effect

sustainable development. The highly valued policy influences companies to increase waste

diversion practices. There is a limited amount of resources available on planet earth. These

resources must be used, reused, and recycled to increase the life of a material. Materials should

not serve one purpose and then be disposed of if we are to be a sustainable society.

Purpose. The construction industry generates over a hundred million tons of waste each

year. Waste reduction is essential in sustainable development. Construction, demolition, and

renovation generate about 35% of all generated waste. It is essential for the construction industry

to reduce the amount of waste it generates.

Policy terms. The Waste Diversion Policy requires that 90% of all recyclable material

must be recycled. The policy requires the construction company to provide recyclable containers


























O 2007 John Robert Banting









The fourth maj or topic identified by the SA 8000 is freedom of association and the right to

collective bargaining. The employee must maintain the right to form and j oin unions. The

employee must be allowed to bargain for wages and benefits only limited by law. The third

paragraph ensures that the personnel's representatives are not discriminated against and have

access to the represented employee at work.

The SA 8000's fifth section identifies standards based on discrimination. The criteria for

certification are based on three paragraphs covering discrimination. The primary concept of the

fifth section is that a company cannot discriminate on a person during any part of the hiring and

employment process. A person may not be discriminated against because of race, gender, sexual

orientation, national origin, religion, or age. Paragraph 5.2 eliminates the ability for a company

to limit personal beliefs and paragraph 5.3 demands that no sexual, threatening, or abusive terms,

gestures, or contact are directed toward any personnel.

The disciplinary practices of the SA 8000 establish a policy that companies must follow to

be certified by the SAI. The SA 8000 requires that the company may not use, support, or

condone corporal punishment, mental or physical coercion, and verbal abuse (SAI 2001).

The criteria to meet the SA 8000's standards for work hours require that the company will

comply with all laws and industry standards. The SAI recognizes that a standard workweek

should not exceed 48 hours and that all employees must have at least one day off every

consecutive seven-day period. The policy also defines limits on overtime. Overtime must be

reimbursed at a premium rate and cannot exceed 12 hours over the standard time limit of a

workweek for each employee. Paragraph 7.2 mandates that overtime shall be completely

voluntary other than stated in section 7.3. Paragraph 7.3 explicitly states, where the company is

party to a collective bargaining agreement freely negotiated with worker organizations (as









SEE EVALUATION, A COMPREHENSIVE SUSTAINABILITY CERTIFICATION FOR
THE CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY




















By

JOHN ROBERT BANTING


A THESIS PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL
OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT
OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE MASTER OF SCIENCE IN BUILDING
CONSTRUCTION

UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA

2007










a specified percent of workers that must be paid at a rate that places them over the poverty line.

Living wages help to distribute wealth among the less fortunate and develop the surrounding

community .

Policy terms. The Employment Policy is a prerequisite of the framework. The policy

defines guidelines for the company of employment. The policy sets the living wage rates equal to

130% of the poverty line. The poverty line must be updated and established each year of

certification. The policy terms the employer must abide by are

* will abide by all state and federal requirements;

* may not use illegal labor of any kind;

* will not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, age, religion, national origin,
disability, or veteran status;

* will establish living wage rates for all employees equal to 130% above the poverty line
updated and established each year.

4.2.2.3 Health Insurance Policy, Healthy Living Program 1.2.3 (20 points)

The SEE Evaluation Health Insurance Policy promotes a healthy lifestyle for sustainable

development. The program rewards employees for their health performance. The 20 point policy

establishes guidelines for a health insurance program to promote healthy living habits. The

Healthy Living Program enables the employee to have the ability to decide on the amount of

insurance coverage received through lifestyle practices.

Purpose. The purpose of the Health Insurance Policy is to promote healthy behavior for all

employees in the company. Many current construction companies' insurance policies do not

influence employees to be healthy. The SEE Evaluation Health Insurance Policy is designed to

promote a healthy lifestyle for employees. The healthier the employees are, the more the

employees are rewarded. Figure 4-2 explains the Healthy Living Program in extensive detail.










of total subcontracted construction value. The policy aids in the development of the community

the helps to raise the current economic median.

Purpose. The Supplier Diversity Policy gives minority owners the opportunity to obtain

subcontracts in fair market competition. The Supplier Diversity Policy enables minority

subcontractors to grow through increases in their selection. It is important to understand the

benefits that come from working with locally owned businesses in the community. The Supplier

Diversity Policy requires that the company to use a certain percentage of minority owned

subcontractors in relation to the current amount of work being performed

Policy terms. Minority subcontractors must be awarded at least 2% of all subcontracts

calculated out of the company's total proj ect amount. The company's total proj ect amount will

use the current value of all subcontracts and divide it by the current total value of all minority

subcontracts.

4.2.4 Obligations to Community and Customers Section

The community and customers of the company are essential to a company's success and

performance. Construction companies must acknowledge their obligations to the community and

customers. The framework defines policies for companies in relation to the client and

community .

4.2.4.1 Client Inform Policy 1.4.1 (prerequisite)

The Client Inform Policy is an easily attainable prerequisite that helps the community and

client to understand the construction company's policies and goals. The Client Inform Policy is

composed of 2 different sections. The first section defines the creation of a brochure and the

second segment defines required topics the company must cover during the first meeting with the

client.









ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

I would like to thank Dr. Charles J. Kibert for his true unwavering passion for sustainable

construction. He has had a profound effect on my outlook on life. I only hope I can live up to the

high standards he sets. I would also like to thank Dr. R. Raymond Issa and Dr. Jimmie Hinze for

their help, guidance, and contributions to the study. It has been a pleasure to work with the entire

building construction faculty. Their knowledge and enthusiasm for construction is astounding.

Last, but not least, Dottie Beaupied has been such a tremendous help throughout my graduate

schooling. She has truly made the Rinker School of Building Construction feel like home. I

could never thank her enough for all of the selfless help she has given.

I would like to thank each individual who has played a significant role in my life; you are

all part of me. Through the love of my family and girlfriend I understand life. This has truly been

a poet' s dream and a workingman's will.









the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own

needs. The SEE Evaluation is one step on the path towards sustainable development for an

industry that is in desperate need for change.






























































Figure 4-1. SEE Evaluation points and prerequisites layout.


82









2.3.2.6 Eco-Management and Audit Scheme

Eco-Management and Audit Scheme (EMAS) is a European organization that has

developed documents that address the construction industry, under the topic of "organizations

controlling temporary sites." The applicant organization must provide evidence that it has

adopted procedures and technologies, suitable to the specific sites in which it has to temporarily

operate to be a member of EMAS. Where applicable, these procedures should include at least the

following items (EMAS 2001):

* appropriate technology and training (EMAS 2001)

* proper environmental analysis of the sites prior to the start of the activity (EMAS 2001)

* analysis of the environmental consequences out coming from future planned activities
(EMAS 2001)

* communication to the public living in the area and to the local authorities concerning the
relevant environmental aspects associated to the working plan, and the related identified
solutions (EMAS 2001)

* formulation of recovering plans or solutions for improving the involved area's
environmental conditions at the end of the operations (EMAS 2001)

Temporary sites will be observed by spot checking the organization's site and obtaining

the information needed to ensure the site is in the proper condition. EMAS will ensure the

company is operating properly through the spot check technique. Random checks are part of the

verification process. EMAS registers the activities of the company, not just the selected site

location. EMAS created rules for the applicant company that addresses the procedures the

company must perform to be certified by EMAS. The list of the procedures is a set of the

primary stages of EMAS. Registration of an organization must comply with the following steps:

* Conduct an environmental review considering all environmental aspects of the
organization's activities, products and services, methods to assess these, its legal and
regulatory framework and existing environmental management practices and procedures
(EMAS 1995).









CHAPTER 1
INTTRODUCTION

The world's population is growing at an alarming rate. According to the U.S. Census

Bureau there are currently over six billion people on the earth, with a proj section of over nine

billion people by the year 2050 (United States Census Bureau 2007). If it is possible to meet the

growing needs of the human race, our resources must be better managed and energy used more

efficiently. America is one of the world' s largest consumers of energy per capital, exceeding both

China and India. This consumer based society's policies have enabled Americans to lose sight of

operating efficiently and the harm it is doing to the environment. The world's resources are

rapidly being depleted to meet the high demands of growing populations. Continuing on the

unchanged consumptive path, the same capitalistic concept that has made America a world

leader, will eventually lead to its downfall. It is clear there is a need for change. A drastic

reduction in resource and energy consumption needs to occur. The change will not occur over

night. It will require a change in the way individuals and companies currently operate.

The development of third party certifieations has aided in the Eight for sustainable living.

There have been many documents created by the United Nations, organizations, and

governments to increase sustainable practices. These documents contain information that is

pertinent to the construction industry. Currently, there are no sustainable certification systems

that directly focus on the construction industry's standards. The research will help to design a

third party certification pertaining to sustainable development, specifically relating to the

construction industry. The rating system is based on the three primary areas of sustainability.

The Social, Economic, and Environmental (SEE) Evaluation is a third party sustainable

certification tailored to evaluate construction companies. The framework will identify policies

and rate construction companies based on their performance. The SEE Evaluation is not a cure










process that defines a company's obligations, obj ectives, and targets. The second step is to

account for the defined information. Data must be gathered to properly identify targets and

improvement plans. The third step for proper accounting is to have the completed report audited

to confirm the reports legitimacy. The report must be made accessible to shareholders to gain

applicable feedback. The process will then be refined to produce a tailored document that is

integrated into the company's standards.

2.5 Summary

The literature review explored the social, economic, and environmental dimensions of

sustainable development. The research identified specific areas of sustainable development that

need improvement. These specific areas of improvement were explored through the three

primary aspects of sustainability. The research examined the history, goals, and concepts of

sustainable development in an attempt to design a framework to evaluate construction

companies.










Purpose. The Client Inform Policy establishes the company's track record and informs the

client of the construction company's ethical stance on the social, economic, and environmental

aspects of construction. The policy helps in identifying the company's dedication to deliver a

quality product and to adhere to sustainable principles. The increased awareness can prove to be

beneficial to the company. The goal of the policy is to increase awareness about sustainable

practices through the policy terms.

Policy terms. The company must create a brochure that informs stakeholders about

sustainable practices and display the construction services offered by the company. The brochure

must identify the company's obj ectives and define their performance. The goal is to promote

sustainable development to the clients and community. The company is also required to supply

the client with the company's goals, practices, and capabilities during the first meeting.

4.2.4.2 Proper Storage of Materials Policy 1.4.2 (prerequisite)

The proper storage of materials is a standard practice of the construction industry. Material

must be able to uphold their integrity to produce a quality product for the client. The Proper

Storage of Materials Policy prescribes specific requirements the company must perform to obtain

the prerequisite.

Purpose. The proper storage of all materials is important to offer a Einished product

without defects. If certain materials are not protected, moisture damage can occur. This can

affect the quality of the Einal product, the indoor air quality of the building, and can even cause

illnesses.

Policy terms. The applicant company must properly store materials in the manner

described in the Indoor Environmental Quality section of the LEED, credit 3.1 to receive the

proper storage of materials point. LEED credit 3.1 states Protect stored onsite or installed

absorptive materials from moisture damage (USGBC 2005). The policy offers prescriptive









minority owned companies have the opportunity to grow and become independent. This enables

disadvantaged businesses to develop and compete with non-disadvantaged businesses.

2.1.1.8 Social Accountability International, SA 8000

The Social Accountability 8000 is a standard for working conditions developed by Social

Accountability International (SAI). The SAI is an organization that promotes human rights for

workers. Found in 1996, the SA 8000 is the principal work of the SAI. The SA 8000 was

composed and published in 1997 and updated in 2001.The SA 8000 specifies standards for social

accountability. It is comprised of nine sections, addressing child labor, forced labor, health and

safety, collective bargaining, disciplinary practices, working hours, remuneration, and

management systems.

The child labor section of the SA 8000 is composed of four requirements. The first portion

of the section stipulates that companies cannot engage in or support the use of child labor. The

definition of child labor according to SAI is any work by a child less than 15 years of age, unless

local minimum age law stipulates a higher age for work or mandatory schooling in which case

the higher age would apply the age specified in the above definition of a child, except as

provided for by ILO Recommendation 146. If, however, local minimum age law is set at 14

years of age in accordance with developing-country exceptions under ILO Convention 138, the

lower age will apply (SAI 2001). Paragraph 1.2 informs a company that it must document,

maintain, and communicate company policy for child labor remediation. Paragraph 1.3 explicitly

states that the company shall establish, document, maintain, and effectively communicate to

personnel and other interested parties policies and procedures for promotion of education for

children covered under ILO Recommendation 146 and young workers who are subj ect to local

compulsory education laws or are attending school, including means to ensure that no such child

or young worker is employed during school hours and that combined hours of daily












Projects in Progress Project Value Certifiable Points Total Point Value
(1:*11.: (C ly.l 1 1 1 1 1 II I IIIII
P e I:e 1 3 ---..r [tl' l rl[ F1. 1 11 1 I II II I I II I 1-
|$ .:0 .1:.|@ I II II I I II II I1 1

1-In-li I 15 0 I I I I I II I I II II IIlil
*:I;*(11.:0~~- :0 7 .1 I I II II I I II II

Totals 152
Application Percentage 0.56 Certifiable Points divided by Point Value

e 5. rc s 1 Please: *:*nil, unlIs..[ m~foj~rnianon ontoj fl.+ a n l




Figure 4-5. Example Project Calculation for SEE Evaluation, Indoor Air Quality During
Constrction.









on every job site. There must be an established container for woods, plastics, and metals. The

waste generation of recyclable materials will be calculated each month to ensure the Waste

Diversion Policy is being followed.

4.4.2.2 Regional Materials Policy 3.2.2 (15 points)

The Regional Materials Policy is a 15 point policy that requires companies to obtain

supplies that have less than a 1,000 mile life cycle process from extraction to the j obsite. The

policy requires materials selected by the contractors are as local to the jobsite as possible through

establishing a maximum distance for a specified amount of materials to be extracted from.

Purpose. The closer materials are extracted and manufactured in relation to the site, the

less energy will be consumed for transportation. The closer the materials are to the site the less

energy used. The less energy used the less greenhouse gases are produced.

Policy terms. Fifteen percent of all proj ect materials cannot exceed a total 1,000 mile life

cycle distance from extraction to job site. It is understood that the architect can specify materials

that do not meet these requirements. If this occurs, these specified noncompliant materials can be

subtracted out of the total proj ect cost. To earn the Regional Material points, the total distance

that 15 % of all materials can travel from extraction to j ob site is 1000 miles. The percentage

calculation is derived by obtaining the total proj ect cost and subtracting noncompliant architect

specified materials. The total from the previous calculation is then divided by the cost of all

regional materials that meet the specifications. If the calculation is greater than 15% for the total

average of all current proj ects, the point is awarded.

4.4.2.3 Site Condition Policy 3.2.3 (10 points)

The Site Condition Policy requires that every construction site the company builds must be

upheld to the highest quality standards and must meet every aspect prescribed in the policy









manufacturing or furnishing of materials, supplies, articles, or equipment to the U.S. government

or the District of Columbia. The Act covers employees who produce, assemble, handle, or ship

goods under these contracts (United States Department of Labor 1976).

2.1.1.3 Fair Labor Standard Act of 1938

The Fair Labor Standard Act of 1938 was formed to create a federal minimum wage

standard. The Fair Labor Standard Act established minimum wage and overtime standards for all

employees. The Fair Labor Standard Act addresses and regulates minimum wage, work

exceeding the standard workweek, child labor and discrimination. There are many issues that the

Fair Labor Standard Act of 1938 does address however it does not require or address

* vacation, holiday, severance, or sick pay;

* meal or rest periods, holidays, or vacations;

* premium pay for weekend or holiday work;

* pay raises or fringe benefits;

* discharge notice, reason for discharge, or immediate payment of final wages to terminated
employees.


2.1.1.4 Equal Pay Act of 1963

The Equal Pay Act of 1963 is the first legislation to address the issue of female employees

being underpaid due to their sex. The law stipulates No employer having employees subj ect to

any provisions of this section shall discriminate, within any establishment in which such

employees are employed, between employees on the basis of sex by paying wages to employees

in such establishment at a rate less than the rate at which he pays wages to employees of the

opposite sex in such establishment for equal work on j obs the performance of which requires

equal skill, effort, and responsibility (U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission 1997).









any employee. Without impaired judgment, the construction industry is a dangerous industry.

The use of a controlled substance or alcohol places others at risk and cannot be tolerated.

Purpose. The Substance Abuse Policy helps to maintain a safe, efficient, and healthy

working environment. Employees who abuse any substance put others in harm's way.

Participating in any jobsite activities while under the influence of drugs or alcohol poses a

serious risk to job site safety and will not be tolerated.

Policy terms. There is no tolerance for substance abuse and precautions must be taken to

avoid this mistake. The Substance Abuse Policy explicitly lists the rules that the certified

company must abide by.

* All employees must not be impaired through use of drug, alcohol, or any illegal substances
at any time during employment.

* All employees will be drug tested pre-employment with the company.

* All employees are subjugated to random drug testing on a regular basis.

* All associated employees will be post accident drug tested.

4.2.2 Company Obligations to Employees

It is essential that the applicant companies create a healthy and safe working environment

for all employees and comply with all federal and state employment laws. Social obligations go

beyond abiding by current laws. The SEE Evaluation establishes a set of social policies that

identify the obligations of the employer to the employee.

4.2.2.1 Safety Policy 1.2.1 (prerequisite)

The SEE Evaluation framework is committed to creating a safe working environment for

all employees. The safety of employees is essential for the success of a construction company. A

list of safety requirements that must be met to be considered for certification has been developed.

The Safety Policy is a prerequisite of the SEE Evaluation that must be met to be certified.










part of the SEE Evaluation as contractor safety. The policy terms explicitly state the

specifications for subcontractors.

The SEE Evaluation is committed to providing a safe workplace in every aspect of the

construction industry. Criminal background checks are required for all employees before

employment with a SEE certified company. Infractions of the law may eliminate the opportunity

for future employment with the company depending on the severity of the infraction.

Policy terms. The safety of all workers should be of the utmost importance to any

company. The safety policies must be abided by construction companies to ensure certification.

Applicant companies that do not abide by this policy are not eligible for certification. The

construction company's safety policy must contain and abide by the prescribed SEE Evaluation

Safety Policy. The construction company's safety policy must be compliant with the following

information but is not limited to this information:

* All construction sites must be OSHA compliant.

* OSHA compliance officers must always be granted access to all construction sites.

* All employees must be ten hour OSHA certified.

* A j obsite specific safety plan must be developed for every proj ect that the company builds.

* Subcontractors with a safety experience modification rate greater than 0.95 cannot be hired
by the contractor.

* Pre-employment criminal background checks are required for all employees.

4.2.2.2 Employment Policy 1.2.2 (prerequisite)

The Employment Policy is a prerequisite that directly deals with the relationship between

employer and employee. The Employment Policy contains many different areas of focus

pertaining to the employees' quality of life. The Employment Policy addresses affirmative

action, illegal labor, wages, harassment, and overtime.









team up with the United States Green Building Council's LEED program. The LEED program

could offer innovation credits for being SEE certified. This relationship would reward the

company for being certified by the SEE Evaluation. The framework has existing points that are

similar to LEED 2.2 but takes a different approach towards the construction. The different

aspects of construction enable companies to combines and cover more areas of sustainability.

The evaluation requires company to operate in particular manner all the time rather than when

building a LEED certified proj ect.

6.2 Conclusion

The SEE Evaluation is a sustainable certification system that evaluates construction

companies based on their social, economic, and environmental performance. A set of evolving

policies were developed through previous laws, standards, certifieations, and documents to

equally evaluate small, medium, and large construction companies. The developed policies of the

SEE Evaluation were tailored to address specific inefficiencies of the construction industry. The

three pronged framework is limited to the control and capabilities of the contractor to positively

influence sustainable development. The SEE Evaluation improves the construction industry by

rating construction companies on the adoption of policies in a point based format.









4.4.1.4 Water Efficiency Policy 3.1.4 (15 points)

Water reduction is a simple goal for the construction company to attain. The cost of

becoming water efficient has a relatively short pay back period. The office must exercise water

conservation through the use of waterless urinals, ultra low flow fixtures, and toilet. The

company must also have efficiently designed landscaping.

Purpose. The Water Efficiency Policy's purpose is to improve construction companies'

use of water. The water use can be drastically reduced through simple steps. Landscaping is an

outlet that can reduce water usage. The office landscape must be designed to reduce irrigation

demands. This task can be completed through specifying trees and plants that do not require

large amounts of irrigation. Water reduction technologies will prove to be a beneficial

investment to the company and environment because of the increasing cost of water.

Policy terms. The construction company's office should use water efficient Eixtures,

urinals and toilets and no water may be used to irrigate the office's landscaping. There can not be

permanent irrigation on the construction company's property. The terms reduce the industry

standard water consumption. Water reduction is easily obtained through conscientious habits and

the uses of water efficient technologies.

4.4.1.5 Reusable Cup Policy 3.1.5 (5 points)

The Reusable Cup Policy is an easily attainable 5 point policy. The policy help to bring

awareness to the simple steps that can be taken to produce a more sustainable environment. The

Reusable Cup Policy is a policy that can be easily instated by the company.

Purpose. The purpose of the Reusable Cup Policy is to reduce the amount of waste

generated by the company. This simple policy can save the company money through the

decreased costs of purchasing disposable cups. The Reusable Cup Policy helps to raise

awareness about sustainable practices and helps to promote a positive outlook.

















Obiainto Eml e: Section 1
Prerequisile 1.1.1 E~saBuslness C nonuc G~uieline 15
Prerequisite 1.1.2 SbtneAbuse Pol~cy 15


Obiainto E loe:Section 2 Sboa
Prerequisite 1.2.1 Safer, Pol~c\ 15
Prerequisite 1.2.2 mlomn Policy 15
POlni 1 2 3 HelhInsurance Polocy 20
Poini 1 2 4 BeetPolicy 10 to 20
Point 1 2.5 Eduminlanal Assarlance Pol~cy 15
Point 1.2.6 a cr Polic 10
Point 1 2 7 Indoor All Quality Dunga C onstructaen Pol~cy 5 lo I0
Point 1 2 3 smearln PolIr, s


Obiainto Subcontractor: Section 3 Sboe
Prerequisite 1.3.1 Supplier Selectuan Policy 15
Poini 1 32 SuplrDrrersity PoIcy~ 15
Sublotal
Obiainto Client and Comnt: Section 4
Prrqiie1.4 1 CletIntrrr Pol~cy 15
Prerequisile 1 .4.; Proer Srage01M rarsnals 15
Point 1 4 3 cniuueConrtrudtan cralelrm 10
Point 1 4 4 ou.ssmPub-y 5

Subraral




Obiainto Stakeholder: Section 1
Prerequisite 2.1.1 Tranrsprlnev Pol~n 15
Prerequisile 2.1.2 S Irctioldro Si Ie mowni Pcliev 15
Subtotal




Offie Oligtio: Section 1

Prrq ie3 1 1 Copay is~as and Renatedbans Pubvl 15
Prrqiie3 1: CF and Energy Srar Fr,lc 15
Prerequisile 3.1.: Recyc PrograrnPecrl 15
Point 3 1 4 WtrE~fc~ern:? Policy 15
Poini 3 1 5 Resable cunp Panlcy 5


Sit Obigaio: Section 2 utoa

Point 3 2 1 maleDvsrrlon Palmy 25
Polni 3 22 Re~nlMIlerals Policy 15
Poini 3 23 Sue Cndllion Pollcy 101
Poini 3.2 1 LEED A P Ernplors Polay~ 10
Point 3 2 5 EetOni Dcumcnrealan POlhl? 10
Subtotal


180 prerequistie points Must attain all prerequilslte points Total
additional points Select desired additional point Out of 380




Figure 4-6. The SEE Evaluation point and prerequisite calculation sheet.









5.1.5 Environmental Implication

Applying the SEE Evaluation framework into the practices of the construction industry

will have a positive effect on the environment. Benchmarking will be used to establish

quantitative and qualitative values. The benchmarking process examines the performance of the

company pre and post implementation of the framework to identify the improvement. The

amount of energy consumed, materials utilized, water consumed, and carbon dioxide generated

will be measured by the certification. The G3 performance indicators inform the construction

company how efficiently it is operating. The SEE Evaluation will have a positive effect on the

environment by encouraging companies to reduce waste and become energy efficient. The

implications will vary for each construction company based on their current policy and practices.

5.2 Implementation of SEE Evaluation in a Construction Company

The implementation of the framework in a construction company should be approached in

a collective manner. The certification process begins by evaluating the construction company

current policies. Areas of improvement towards sustainable development are identified by the

defined policies. Once the deficiencies of the company are defined, the next procedure is to

institute the corrective measures. The prerequisites identify mandatory areas of improvement and

the points improve the company's performance. Every employee should be involved in the

process of point selection to help create a democratic atmosphere. It is important for employees

to convey the points they believe to be important. The point selection process should be

approached as a democratic procedure where each employee retains the right to vote on the

topics that they value and desire to obtain. It is important to use this democratic process in order

to ensure that each voice is heard. The topic selection will help to define the quantity of points

attainable by the construction company. It will also help to identify the certification level

attainable by the construction company. The higher the certification level, the better the ethical









Leading companies' social documents are explored to gain insight into the forefront of current

corporate social polices in America. Starbucks and Toshiba's current polices are observed to help

define the baseline social performance of the SEE Evaluation. These current laws and documents

identify the expected performance of the construction industry. The evaluation' s goal is to

advance and improve the current condition of social performance through creating policies that

the applicant company must operate by.

3.1.2 Economic Development

Economic development has naturally occurred though American history. Economic

development is typically based on the monetary performance of a company. Economic

development has been the primary performance concern to American companies. The social and

environmental aspects of sustainability have been neglected caused by the concern of economic

performance. Stockholders control the current economic operation practices of their company.

The SEE Evaluation framework' s primary focus in the economic section is to maintain corporate

practices that are expected from the leading American companies. The requirement for the

company to perform transparently is the primary concern of the SEE Evaluation process.

3.1.3 Environmental Development

Environmental performance in the construction industry will be improved by the SEE

Evaluation process. The research began with American laws that were created to protect the

environment. The history of environmental protection is followed through the Environmental

Protection Agency (EPA). The defined environmental protection laws are identified and carried

over in to the framework of the evaluation. Certifications for the construction product inform the

SEE Evaluation by approaching sustainable development from a different aspect. Current

construction certifications focus on the construction product and neglect construction processes

and policies. These certifications are drastically different than the SEE Evaluation but are










World Commission on Environment and Development. (1987). Our common future, Oxford
University Press, Oxford.










Purpose. Construction companies have an obligation to their shareholders. Typically the

primary concern of the shareholder is the economic performance of their investment, but some

investors do not only consider the economic output of their investment. Some investors believe it

is their moral obligation to invest in companies that also behave in a socially and

environmentally responsible manner. This practice enables the shareholder to make a profit and

acts as an advocate of sustainable development.

Policy terms. The company must be responsive to the shareholders' concerns and provide

a company statement to identify the company's ethical stance and define its dedication to

sustainable development. The company must define the company's track record and inform the

shareholder of the construction company's ethical stance on the social, economic, and

environmental aspects of construction. Companies must work with their shareholders to identify

specific issues of concern. It is important to form an open dialogue with all of the shareholders to

communicate the performance of the company to gain input and advice

4.4 SEE Evaluation, Environmental Division

The Environmental Division of the SEE Evaluation is divided into two sections, dealing

with two different segments of a construction company. The Environmental Section of the

framework is divided into Office Obligation and Site Obligation. The obligations approach

construction inefficiencies from different aspects, helping to encompass every area of the

construction industry.

4.4.1 Office Obligation

The Office Section addresses environmental issues and polices that effect the office and

the general policies of the company. The company's beliefs must be effectively represented

through its dedication to the environment. Many companies need to alter their current practices.

The alteration of company policies begin with a change in attitude towards the environment. The









CHAPTER 5
IMPLEMENTATION OF THE SEE EVALUATION AND ASSOCIATED IMPLICATIONS

There are many possibilities for the future of the SEE Evaluation. The demand for ethically

and efficient construction companies will come in the form of governmental policies and the

demands of conscientious clients. The seal of the certification will identify reputable companies

that promote sustainable development.

5.1 Implementation into the Construction Industry

Many construction companies will have to alter the way that they conduct business if they

intend to be certified by the SEE Evaluation, while other construction companies may not have

to change any of their operational procedures and policies. The SEE Evaluation' s framework is

based on a set of defined policies. If the company complies with the standards, they are eligible

for certification. The framework only sets policies of operation that the certified companies must

abide. Through the certification process, construction companies are able to compare themselves

with other certified construction companies. The framework hypothetically allows companies to

operate on a fair playing field. Implementing the certification policies into the construction

industry would result in a positive change from the current industry standards.

5.1.1 Barriers to Implementation into the Construction Industry

There are barriers to the implementation of the framework. It is evident that the

construction industry is an industry that is adverse to change; therefore the implementation of the

framework would be very difficult. The standard operating practices of many construction

companies are likely to not change because of their current economic condition. Change will

occur if laws and incentives are created by governmental policies to promote sustainable

development.









LIST OF REFERENCES


Clark, W., and Kates, R. W. (1999). Our conanon journey: A transition toward sustainability,
National Academy Press, Washington, D.C.

Eco-Management and Auditing Scheme. (2001). Guidancedd~~~~~ddddd~~~~ on entity suitable for registration to
enzas, Office for Official Publications of the European Communities, Brussels.

Eco-Management and Auditing Scheme. (1995). "The main stages of emas."

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. (1997). "The equal pay act of 1963."
(Mar. 1, 2007).

Franklin Associates. (1998). Characterization of Building Related Construction and Demolition
Debris in the thrited States, The U. S. Environmental Protection Agency Municipal and
Industrial Solid Waste Division Office of Solid Waste, Prairie Village, Ks.

Global Environmental Management Initiative. (2005). "Vision." Gemi's strategic goals,
(May 11, 2007).

Institute of Social and Ethical Accountability. (2003). Accountability 1000 assurance standard~~dddddddd~~~~~
AccountAbility, London.

Institute of Social and Ethical AccountAbility. (1999). Accountability 1000 fantework,
standar~~ddsdddddd~~~~~ guidelines and professional qualification, AccountAbility, London.

Social Accountability International. (2001). Social accountability 8000, Social Accountability
International Publications, New York.

United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Division for Sustainable
Development. (2005). "Agenda 21."
(Jan. 18,
2007).

United States Department of Labor. (2007). "Walsh-healy public contract act, title 41, chapter 1
S35." Employment law guide: Wages and supply & equipment contracts,
(Feb. 21, 2007).

United States Green Building Council. (2005). Leadership in energy and environmental design
for new construction 2.2, USGBC Publications, Washington, D.C.

United States Census Bureau. (2007). "World population information" World population trends,

World Business Council for Sustainable Development. (1999). CSR, meeting changing
expectations, WBCSD Publications, Cambridge, Mass.










*All new light bulbs used by the company must be compact florescent light bulbs CFLs or
as energy efficient as CFLs.

4.4.1.3 Recycle Program Policy 3.1.3 (prerequisite)

The Recycle Program Policy promotes sustainable practices by reducing the amount of raw

materials that need to be extracted from the earth. The prerequisite strictly encourages a simple

habit that can be adopted by employees. By providing ample recycling stations there is no

deterrent to recycling.

Purpose. The Recycle Program Policy must be established for the office to be certified by

the evaluation. As a minimum, 95% of all recyclable material disposed of at the office must be

recycled. This point will demand the involvement of all employees of the company. Recycling is

the responsibility of all individuals. It is every employee's responsibility to carry out

environmentally friendly practices. Recycling is a simple procedure that involves all individuals,

which consumes very little effort and time.

Policy terms. Recycle stations will be established throughout the offices of the company

and at all job site trailers. There must be at least one recycle retainer, including receptacles for

paper, plastic, glass, and metals for every 2,500 square feet of space. If the space exceeds two

thousand square feet then two recycle retainers must be placed in the office. Each additional

2500 square feet must include an additional recycle receptacle. Every floor of the office must

have a recycle receptacle. The receptacles cannot be placed within 50 feet of each other. All of

the company's expired documentation and non active plans must be recycled. Paper use in the

construction industry is abundant and needs to be addressed. The receptacles must be

strategically located for the convenience of the employees and to encourage recycling.










generated. The report estimated 136 million tons of building related construction and demolition

debris was generated in 1996. Forty three percent of the waste was generated from residential

sources and 57 % is from non-residential sources (Franklin Associates 1998).

Wood is the largest component of waste material generated at construction sites and

concrete is the largest component of building demolition debris. Thirty five to forty five percent

of construction and demolition debris was land filled and 20% to 30% was recycled. The most

common materials recycled were concrete, asphalt, metals, and wood. Metals have the highest

recycling rate among recovered construction materials. Currently over 85% of steel is recycled.

The EPA' s report on construction and demolition debris helps to identify areas of needed

improvement for the construction industry.

2.3.2.2 Energy Star

Energy Star is a voluntary market based partnership designed to offer businesses and

consumers with effective energy efficient solutions. It saves energy, money, and the

environment. The labeling program is designed to identify and promote energy efficient products

to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Energy Star is a j oint program of the U. S. Environmental

Protection Agency and the U. S. Department of Energy. It helps to save money and protect the

environment by using energy efficient products and practices. Energy Star works with more than

8,000 private and public sector organizations and has been a leader in the United States for

energy conservation. It has had an influence on the use of technological innovations like LED

traffic lights, efficient fluorescent lighting, power management systems for office equipment, and

low standby energy use. Energy Star labels over fifty different product categories. Programs like

Energy Star are playing a vital role in efforts to reduce greenhouse gas. Energy Star has saved

Americans over $12 billion on their energy bills and has reduced a comparable amount of

greenhouse gas emissions.









measures to ensure that materials are properly stored. All materials that will be installed with in

two days must be covered with weather resistant plastic to protect the materials integrity. Any

absorptive materials that will not be installed within two days and can be damaged by weather

must be stored in a dry storage container on or off site.

4.2.4.3 Constructive Construction Criticism Policy 1.4.3 (10 points)

The contractor shall put forth an effort to work with the architect in the development of the

proj ect. The contractor has expertise in construction methods and should share knowledge gained

through experience to make the building's construction, building systems and building operate

more efficiently in cost and time.

Purpose. The Constructive Construction Criticism Policy will attempt to work and aid in

the design process, giving advice pertaining to the construction of the building and the building' s

operating systems. The contractor has expertise and knowledge of construction that the architect

does not have. Applying this knowledge to the design can save money, reduce waste, and save

energy.

Policy terms. The contractors should have an open dialogue with the architect and be

willing to set forth advice to the architect about energy conserving methods or tactics. The

contractor will aid the architect in selecting properly sized energy efficient systems. Value

engineering is a valuable additional quality to the construction process and must be considered

by the contractor.

4.2.4.4 Volunteerism Policy 1.4.4 (5 points)

The Volunteerism Policy is a 5 point policy that is dedicated to giving back to the

community. The policy can be obtained through volunteering a specified amount of time. The

applicant construction company can attain the 5 point policy through adopting the requirements

set by the policy.









principles, except the report informs and notifies the company on their performance in all three

of the sustainable categories.

2.4.2.2 AccountAbility, AA1000 Assurance Standard

The Institute for Social and Ethical AccountAbility (ISEA) was created in 1996. The

purpose of the Institute was to develop and measure reporting methods that will accurately and

properly define a company's performance. The AA1000 framework was developed in 1999. The

goal of the AA1000 was to help progress sustainable development through the learning process

of ethical accounting. The AA1000 Assurance Standard (AS) was the next document produced

by AccountAbility. The Assurance Standard was released in 2003. The AA1000 AS ensures

consistent sustainable reporting to hold companies accountable. AccountAbility released the

AA1000 AS to ensure proper reporting of sustainable performance. The AA1000 is not a

certifiable standard rather a generally applicable standard for assessing, attesting to, and

strengthening the credibility and quality of organizations' sustainability reporting (ISEA 2003).

The AA1000 is a web based interactive standard. The AA1000 AS is intended to encourage

innovation around key quality principles, which at this stage; it considers a more effective

approach in moving forward individual adopting organizations and the Hield as a whole (ISEA

1999). The AA1000 gives a set of guidelines for proper sustainability reporting. AA1000 is an

AccountAbility standard focused on securing the quality of social and ethical accounting,

auditing, and reporting. It is comprised of principles and process standards (ISEA 1999). The

sustainable reporting standard evaluates the credibility of published reports.

The AccountAbility defines the process of reporting for the AA1000 AS as a process

standard, not a substantive performance standard. It specifies processes that an organization

should follow to account for its performance and not the levels of performance the organization

should achieve (ISEA 1999). The process of social and ethical accounting begins with a planning









5.1.2 Implementation of Performance Indicators

Performance indicators are essential for the success of the SEE Evaluation. Performance

indicators are qualitative or quantitative measures that provide an indication a company's

performance of a specific policy. Performance indicators identify if change has occurred since

the implementation of the framework and if the change has had a positive or negative impact.

Performance indicators established in the SEE Evaluation will identify the performance of the

certified company and notify the stakeholder of their success.

5.1.3 Social Implication

The effects of applying the social policies in a construction company will significantly

impact the company. The company will have clearly defined ethical parameters. The social

policies help employees to understand the proper way to conduct themselves in a sustainable

manner. Applying the social prerequisites and points will drastically alter the current social

conditions of construction industry, but may increase construction costs. The proper treatment of

all employees, clients, and subcontractors is imperative to the certification's success, but will

mostly likely increase the cost of the company's operation. Employee satisfaction evaluations

should be performed to ensure quality social performance.

5.1.4 Economic Implication

Current stockholder reporting is fairly well established in America. There is no direct cost

associated with a company to be transparent. There might be an indirect association of cost to

implement transparent practices into the company's accounting policy. There are no legitimate

reasons for a company to not be transparent. The primary reasons a company may not want to be

transparent are to prevent the disclosure of the company's profitability, expose possible internal

misleading, or hide large salaries of key personnel.









6.1.1 Further Development

The next step in bringing the SEE Evaluation to life would to be to gain feedback about

each policy for insight of its feasibility and practicality. The most informative solution would be

to monitor a construction company for a year before instituting the certification, then monitoring

its actions while it operates in accordance with the framework's policies. This would be

beneficial in understanding what effects would occur, which topics apply directly to creating a

sustainable future for the construction industry, and pinpointing new directions for growth. The

SEE Evaluation policies will go out for review among construction professionals, professors, and

key organizations to gain different perspectives on the same topics.

Future advances of the SEE Evaluation could use surveys of employees from certified

companies to help identify and establish the proper value of each specified policy. The survey

would help define potential areas of improvement in the construction industry. An in depth cost

evaluation for each point and prerequisite will need to occur to have an understanding of the

actual cost associated with the policies. In many sections the cost difference will vary due to the

construction companies' current policies. If the company already exercises a sustainability

policy, that particular policy would not increase its current operating costs of the company. The

SEE Evaluation could grow to include new policies for different types of construction

organizations. The framework could be formatted to include design build and construction

management companies. The SEE Evaluation has great potential to be a step in the right

direction for the entire construction industry. By trail and error in the workplace, it is expected

that the certification would adapt to what is needed to improve sustainable practices.

6.1.2 Future Collaboration

The SEE Evaluation could eventually partner with existing programs to form mutually

beneficial relationships that further advance sustainable development. The SEE Evaluation could










development in any applicable manner. A company that builds LEED certified proj ects needs to

be knowledgeable about sustainable construction certification systems

Policy terms. Ten percent of the company's employees must be LEED accredited

professionals.

4.4.2.5 Electric Documentation Policy 3.2.5 (10 points)

The Electric Documentation Policy promotes advances in technology that help to improve

the performance and efficiency of the applicant company. Electric documentation helps to reduce

the massive amount of paper consumed by construction companies. Documents and files can be

stored electronically which is more preferable than paper documentation that takes up space and

produces waste.

Purpose. The construction industry's foundation is traditionally based on paper

documentation. The ability of a company to divert from this practice will greatly benefit the

environment. Advances in technology have eliminated the need for an excess of paper

documentation. Electronic documentation has enabled companies to reduce their paper use by

electronically storing information.

Policy terms. To receive the Electronic Construction Documentation Policy points the

company must use a paperless documentation system. The company must also eliminate the use

of paper documentation to the extent possible. If the company does not eliminate the use of paper

documentation, they are double documenting. The double documenting practice is inefficient and

does not provide a benefit to the environment therefore will not receive the points.










terms. The site must be maintained and cleaned daily to provide a conducive work environment

for employees and subcontractors.

Purpose. The condition of the site is a direct statement of the construction company's

responsibility to the environment. It is important to keep the site in good working condition so

the employees and non participants are not hindered while on the construction site.

Policy terms. The Site Condition Policy point is associated to the Sustainable Sites

perquisite 1 of LEED 2.2., Construction Activity Pollution Prevention. The Site Condition Policy

requires construction companies to maintain control of airborne particles, water waste, and earth

sedimentation. Trash receptacles must be provided every 5,000 square feet of the site and on

every floor construction takes place. The site must be maintained and cleaned daily to provide a

conducive work environment. To obtain the Site Condition Policy point, the construction

company must meet the define policy terms:

* All construction sites must be compliant with all laws and ordinances of the proj ect
location.

* All construction sites must be compliant with the erosion and sedimentation requirements
of the EPA.

* All construction sites must be cleaned and maintained daily by construction personnel.

4.4.2.4 Leadership in Environmental Efficient Design (LEED) Accredited Professional
Employee Policy 3.2.4 (10 points)

LEED Accredited professionals help to promote the use of the LEED certification.

Accredited professionals (AP) are knowledgeable about environmental performance and help to

promote sustainable development. The improvement of the built environment is a step towards

sustainable development. The LEED AP facilitates the to LEED certification process.

Purpose. A company certified by the SEE Evaluation must be knowledgeable in all areas

of sustainability, including the building product. The SEE Evaluation promotes sustainable









defined by the ILO) representing a significant portion of its workforce, it may require overtime

work in accordance with such agreement to meet short-term business demand (SAI 2001). Any

such agreement must comply with the requirements prescribed by paragraph 7.1

Remuneration is covered in the eighth section of SA 8000. The requirements of the eighth

section are all wages for personnel must meet the legal minimum wage and industry standard.

The funds must be sufficient to meet basic human needs and additional discretionary income.

Paragraph 8.2 eliminates the ability of a company to withhold wages for disciplinary reasons.

Wages and benefits must be in compliance with all laws. The SA 8000 does not allow companies

to form agreements with personnel to reduce its social obligation to the employee.

The ninth and last criterion described by the SA 8000 is a management system. The

management system is defined by 14 paragraphs that address the developmental roles and

policies developed by the SA 8000. The company must form a social accountability policy based

on the requirements set in the ninth chapter. Upper level managements must create the policy of

the management system. The management policy must include a commitment to conform to all

proposed guidelines in the previous sections of the SA 8000, comply with all applicable laws,

and commit to constantly improve. The document and all procedures must be carried out to its

specifications, available to the public, and understood by all personnel. The management must

review and update the policies to the company's potential.

2.1.2 Corporate Social Responsibility

Though the government still plays a large role in social equality of employees, many

corporations have taken the role into their own hands. The term corporate social responsibility

(CSR) has become a key phrase in the business world since the early 1970s. CSR is the concept

that organizations have an obligation to employees, clients, shareholders and communities in

every aspect of their operation. Many businesses have realized the implementation of C SR into











2.3.2.4 Leadership in Environment Efficiency Design, LEED New
Construction 2.2............... ...............33..
2.3.2.5 Green Globes....................... ...... ..........3
2.3.2.6 Eco-Management and Audit Scheme ................. ...............37......_.....
2.4 Sustainable Development ................ ... .......... .. ...... ..............3
2.4.1 Laws, Standards, Documents, Conferences, and Certifications on Sustainable
Development ............................ ......._._. .........38
2.4.1.1 Stockholm Conference .............. ........ ......... ... .......3
2.4.1.3 Agenda 21 and World Summit on Sustainable Development......................40
2.4. 1.4 Global Environmental Management Initiative ................. ............. .......44
2.4.1.5 International Institute for Sustainable Development............... ..............4
2.4. 1.6 World Business Council for Sustainable Development ............... ... ............45
2.4.2 Sustainable Reporting............... ....... ...........4
2.4.2. 1 Global Reporting Initiative, G3 ................. ........___ ............ ........4
2.4.2.2 AccountAbility, AA1000 Assurance Standard .............. .....................4
2.5 Summary ................. ...............48................

3 METHODOLOGY .............. ...............49....


3.1 SEE Evaluation Design............... ...............49.
3.1.1 Social Development ................. ...............49........... ..
3.1.2 Economic Development .......... ......... ......................... ...............50
3.1.3 Environmental Development............... ..............5
3.2 Method of Investigation ................. ...............51........... ...

4 THE SEE EVALUATION .............. ...............52....


4. 1 Company Statement ................. ...............53................
4.1.1 Company Reporting............... ...............5
4. 1.2 Company Communication............... .............5
4. 1.3 Company Advances ................. ...............54........... ...
4.2 SEE Evaluation, Social Division ................ ...............54........... ...
4.2.1 Employees Obligations to the Company .............. ............. .........5
4.2. 1.1 Ethical Business Conduct Guidelines 1.1.1 (prerequisite) ................... ........55
4.2. 1.2 Substance Abuse Policy 1.1.2 (prerequisite) ................. .......................56
4.2.2 Company Obligations to Employees ....._.. ............_. ............... 57.....
4.2.2. 1 Safety Policy 1.2. 1 (prerequisite) ................. ...............57..............
4.2.2.2 Employment Policy 1.2.2 (prerequisite) .............. ......... ...... ..........5
4.2.2.3 Health Insurance Policy, Healthy Living Program 1.2.3 (20 points)...........6 1
4.2.2.4 Benefits Policy 1.2.4 (10/20 points) .................. ..............................62
4.2.2.5 Educational Assistance Policy 1.2.5 (15 points) ................ ............... ....63
4.2.2.6 Day care Policy 1.2.6 (10 points) ................... .......... ........ ................ ....6
4.2.2.7 Indoor Air Quality during Construction Policy 1.2.7 (5/10 points)............ .65
4.2.2.8 Smoking Policy 1.2.8 (5 points) ................. ...............66..............
4.2.3 Obligations to the Subcontracted ................. ........... .... ............ ... 6
4.2.3.1 Supplier Selection Policy 1.3.1 (prerequisite) ................. ......................67
4.2.3.1 Supplier Diversity Policy 1.3.2 (15 points) ................. ................ ...._.67









EQ Credit 3.1. Construction Indoor Air Quality Management Plan is a credit that

establishes an Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) management plan for the construction phase of the

building. This credit's purpose is to reduce indoor air quality problems resulting from the

construction/renovation process in order to help sustain the comfort and well being of

construction workers and building occupants (USGBC 2005). The credit requires that an IAQ

plan must be established for the construction phase of the building that includes

* during construction meet or exceed the recommended Control Measures of the Sheet Metal
and Air Conditioning National Contractors Association (SMACNA) IAQ Guidelines for
Occupied Buildings under Construction, 1995, Chapter 3 (USGBC 2005);

* protect stored on-site or installed absorptive materials from moisture damage (USGBC
2 00 5);

* if permanently installed air handlers are used during construction, filtration media with a
Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV) of 8 shall be used at each return air grille,
as determined by ASHRAE 52.2-1999. Replace all filtration media immediately prior to
occupancy (USGBC 2005).

EQ Credit 3.2. Construction IAQ Management Plan improves the indoor air quality for

building occupants by developing an IAQ management plan for preoccupancy of the building.

Credit 3.2 offers two different options. Option 1 is to flush out the entire building and option 2 is

to perform IAQ testing on the building. Both of the requirements ensure the required indoor air

quality credits are met through LEED.

2.3.2.5 Green Globes

The Green Globes Organization also certifies buildings built by construction companies.

The difference between the LEED Certification and the Green Globes Certification is the latter

focuses on an integrated design process including the owner, architect, and contractor into a

functioning unit. Though similar to the LEED Certification, the construction company has

limited decision making capabilities. The Green Globes Certification is heavily dependent upon

the architect.









BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH

John Robert Banting was accepted to the University of Florida beginning with the fall of

2001. With four years of undergraduate schooling under his belt, he received a Bachelor of

Design from the University of Florida School of Architecture. Continuing his education at the

University of Florida, he proceeded to obtain his Master of Science in Building Construction

with a focus in sustainability in 2007.

During the six years he spent at the University of Florida, he has made many new and

profound relationships through the School of Architecture and the School of Building

Construction. John interned with both large and small construction companies during the

summers of his graduate schooling. John will pursue a job in the construction industry. He will

also attain a LEED accredited professional certification in hopes to work on primarily LEED-

certified proj ects. John accepted the position of Proj ect Engineer from his future employer,

Hedrick Brothers Construction, with the goal of obtaining a position in the company to advance

sustainable development in the construction industry.









transportation to and from work and school, school, and work time does not exceed 10 hours a

day (SAI 2001). The last paragraph of section 1 addresses child and young worker safety. The

paragraph informs companies that they shall not place children in unsafe, unhealthy, or

hazardous environments. The SA 8000 defines the limitation of labor for certification by the SAI

Forced labor is not a maj or concern in the American construction industry but is addressed

by paragraph 2. 1 of the SA 8000. In order to be certified, the company cannot use, endorse, or

support the use of forced labor. According to paragraph 2. 1, a company may not withhold an

employee's identification upon employment.

The health and safety of employees is addressed in the third section of the SA 8000. The

health and safety section is divided into six paragraphs. Each paragraph establishes a standard,

which must be met to be certified by the SAI. Paragraph 3.1 demands that a safe working

environment must be provided for all employees. The standard hazards of the industry are

recognized but note that sufficient steps must be taken to ensure worker safety. Accident

prevention is essential for any company and will occur through exercising extreme caution for

employee well being. Paragraph 3.2 mandates that a senior management representative is

responsible for the implementation of the health and safety portion of the SA 8000. The specified

senior manager is also responsible for the health and safety of all personnel. Employees must

receive health and safety training for the tasks which they are performing specified in paragraph

3.3. Established by section 3.4, detection systems must be set in place to ensure the health and

safety of all employees. The certification system identifies and demands access to clean

bathrooms, potable water, and sanitary facilities for food storage for all personnel in paragraph

3.5. Paragraph 3.6 requires that employers provide a clean, safe facility for employees. It is

imperative for the employer to provide a healthy and safe work environment.









for the world's dilemmas, but a progressive step in the right direction for an industry that is in

desperate need for change. The evaluation will help construction companies identify deficiencies

and operate more efficiently. The sustainable movement will take form in minor advances and

understanding. Experience has shown that a pathway to sustainable development cannot be

charted in advance. Rather, the pathway must be navigated through processes of learning and

adaptation (Clark and Kates 1999). The SEE Evaluation is a progressive step in a new direction

for the construction industry.

1.1 Building Measurement System

Construction companies, suppliers, and subcontractors are important participants in

making a shift towards a sustainable built environment. The United States Green Building

Council states that in the United States, buildings use one third of our total energy, two thirds of

our electricity, one eighth of our water (USGBC 2005). Companies constantly claim that they are

sustainable, but there is no third party organization that has developed set of policies to certify

them. The proposed certification will identify credible construction companies. The rating will

evaluate and inform the company, employees, clients, and shareholders of a company's

performance in the social, economic, and environmental aspects of sustainability, identifying

specific areas of needed improvement. The impartial third party verification process is

specifically tailored to certify construction companies based on their level of performance in the

social, economic, and environmental categories. The policies of the framework exceed the

current requirements set by law. The SEE Evaluation shows a company's commitment to

sustainable development and the future of society.

Many construction companies have become involved with the Leadership in Energy

Environmental Design (LEED) certification. The LEED certification certifies and awards the

construction product, but has very little effect on the policies and practices of a construction









and efficient performance of the company. The democratic process identifies the topics that are

valued by the company and directs the areas in which they will attempt to receive certification

points. The evaluation does not require that all of the selected points are obtained, it is only

mandatory that they are attempted. Once the attemptable points are identified the company must

update their policies to unsure they are congruent with the framework' s policies. The company

must adopt the selected practices and instate the new policies.










* In the light of the results of the review, establish an effective environmental management
system aimed at achieving the organization's environmental policy defined by the top
management. The management system needs to set responsibilities, objectives, means,
operational procedures, training needs, monitoring and communication systems (EMAS
1995).

* Carry out an environmental audit assessing in particular the management system in place
and conformity with the organization's policy and programme as well as compliance with
relevant environmental regulatory requirements (EMAS 1995).

* Provide a statement of its environmental performance which lays down the results
achieved against the environmental obj ectives and the future steps to be undertaken in
order to continuously improve the organization's environmental performance (EMAS
1995).

2.4 Sustainable Development

Sustainable development is a fairly new topic that has grown to be very popular in the turn

of this century. The recent concern of greenhouse gases and increased attention to the

environment has helped to make the term sustainable development a household term. Sustainable

development is defined as development that meets the needs of the present without

compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs (World Commission on

Environment and Development 1987). The social, economic, and environmental aspects of

sustainable development help to identify current and future goals of improvement for our world.

2.4.1 Laws, Standards, Documents, Conferences, and Certifications on Sustainable
Development

There have been many documents produced to help advance sustainable development. The

United Nations has created many documents on sustainable development to set goals for future

government policies since the 1970s. Sustainable development documents encompass all three

topics previously addressed in the literature review. Sustainable development documents have

been created throughout the past 35 years by different organizations, companies, and

governments to increase awareness and advance sustainable development.









2.4.1.3 Agenda 21 and World Summit on Sustainable Development

Agenda 21 is the United Nation's global blueprint for sustainable development. The

creation of Agenda 21 took place in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in 1992 and was updated by the

World Summit of Sustainable Development in Johannesburg, South Africa in 2002. The United

Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Division of Sustainable Development,

created both documents. Agenda 21 was developed for governmental advances in sustainable

development. The agenda is not a prescriptive document for companies; it sets the goals for

sustainable development of the entire world. The Agenda 21 gave insight into sustainable

development and the procedures that need to be taken to become sustainable.

Agenda 21 is divided into four maj or sections. The first section of Agenda 21 addresses

social and economic dimensions. Section two covers conservation and management of resource

development. The Strengthening the Role of Maj or Groups section is explored in the third

segment. The Implementation of the Agenda 21 is composed in section four. From the four

categories each section is broken down into chapters. Each chapter is made up of multiple four

paragraph programs. The programs are composed of the basis for action, the obj ective, activities,

and cost of implementation. Much of the information included in the Agenda 21 is not applicable

to the construction industry. The Agenda 21 is studied to gain insight into applicable guidelines

for the development of a sustainable construction certification.

The social and economic section includes applicable information for the development of

the certification system. The section is divided into eight chapters, each covering a specific topic,

addressed by the United Nations. Not all of the chapters are essential for the research. The

information that pertains to an applicable topic is explored. Paragraph 2.5 expands on the need to

create a nondiscriminatory and predictable trading system. Through developing a fair,

nondiscriminatory trade, developing countries will have the ability to grow and positively affect









define and quantify. Each human defines satisfaction and happiness differently. The evaluation

will attempt to effectively create policies that foster a healthy productive social environment.

4.2.1 Employees Obligations to the Company

The Employees' Obligation to the Company section explores employees' responsibilities

and obligations to the employer construction company. It is an essential condition of

employment that each employee represents their employer to the best of their ability at all times.

There must be a mutually beneficial relationship formed between the employee and employer

during employment. The framework of the certification sets social polices by which employees

of the certified company must abide. Key requirements set by the SEE Evaluation are defined by

policies.

4.2.1.1 Ethical Business Conduct Guidelines 1.1.1 (prerequisite)

Ethical decisions are constantly made during the daily operation of a company and each

employee is held responsible for his or her decisions. Each employee is held to the highest

standards of integrity. A set of fundamental values are set that will help guide employees through

the ethical decision making process. The company benefits from the Ethical Business Conduct

Guidelines by establishing what is expected of all employees. In this way, expectations of the

individual will be standardized. Every individual will be operating with the same understanding

of what is expected of them. This effect creates a positive, unified construction company with

direction and common goals.

Purpose. The Ethical Business Conduct Guidelines establish standards by which all

employees should operate. Employees are held to the highest of standards and expected to

operate by the established code of ethics in the SEE Evaluation. If employees choose not to

follow the rules established by the guidelines, it is grounds for termination of employment.

Harassment is an example issue that is addressed in the Ethical Business Conduct Guidelines.









4.2.2.7 Indoor Air Quality during Construction Policy 1.2.7 (5/10 points)

Indoor Air Quality Policy helps to protect the health and safety of its employees and

subcontractors. The policy prescribes specific requirements that must be met by the construction

company to obtain 5 or 10 points. The policy establishes two different levels of indoor air quality

performance during construction. Employee health and safety are a maj or concern of the Social

Division of the framework.

Purpose. The purpose of achieving a high indoor air quality during construction is to

ensure the proper protection of all individuals temporarily occupying the space during the

construction of a proj ect. There are many toxic chemicals released by building materials that can

harm individuals without proper filtration.

Policy terms. The SEE certification requires that the construction company adhere to the

policies set by LEED Credit 3.1: Construction Indoor Air Quality Management Plan. The LEED

specifications state that selected projects must meet or exceed the recommended Control

Measures of the Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning National Contractors Association

(SMACNA) Indoor Air Quality Guidelines for Occupied Buildings under Construction, 1995,

Chapter 3 (USGBC 2005). If permanently installed air handlers are used during construction to

receive the points, filtration media with a Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV) of 8

shall be used at each return air grille, as determined by ASHRAE 52.2-1999. All filtration media

must also immediately be replaced prior to occupancy. Five points will be awarded if 50% of all

proj ect points meet the guidelines prescribed above. Ten points will be awarded if 90% of the

proj ect points meet the policy requirements. The Indoor Air Quality During Construction Policy

will use a weighted value scale to obtain a fair value of proj ect percentage. The scale associates

the total cost of the proj ect including current change orders and profit to a point value. Figure 4-4

and Figure 4-5 identify the specific features of the Indoor Air Quality Policy.





























To my Mother and Father, your love has molded me into the man I am today. Without your care,
none of this would be possible.









beneficial to the development of the evaluation' s framework. The Leadership in Environment

Efficient Design (LEED) New Construction 2.2 identifies specific areas of improvement that

make construction companies operate more efficient. The designed framework has areas of

improvement that directly overlap with construction product certifications. The environmental

section of the framework is designed by the exploration of previous developed standards, laws,

and documents to improve the performance of the construction industry.

3.2 Method of Investigation

A formal investigation was performed on current and previous laws pertaining to social,

economic, and environmental standards, laws, and certifications. The three aspects of

sustainability were divided and explored independently. The research examined the history of

each different aspect of sustainability from its inception into American history. The gathered

information provided the groundwork for the construction certification policies. Studying the

different documents gave an understanding of the different realms of sustainable development

and the changes that must occur to reach the goal of sustainable development. The framework

was created by observing previously published documents and identified their relationship to the

construction industry.









CHAPTER 3
METHODOLOGY

The obj ective of the research is to create a comprehensive sustainable construction specific

certification. The collection of documents pertaining to the three primary aspects of sustainable

development provided ample information for the development to the Social, Economic, and

Environmental (SEE) Evaluation. Documents, certifications, standards, and laws pertaining to

the three aspects of sustainable development were observed through current American history.

The gathered information determined specific areas of focus and developed the policies to which

the areas of focus must be upheld. The information has been sorted by it' s relation to sustainable

development and organized by date and significance. Previous and current documents give

informative insight into the development of the SEE Evaluation.

3.1 SEE Evaluation Design

The framework of the SEE Evaluation began by researching previous sustainable standards

applicable to the construction industry. The evaluation acknowledges the goals and intent of each

document, then applies the documents goals to the construction industry standards and practices.

The current inefficiencies of the construction industry are addressed by the researched

documents. The framework of the evaluation examined current construction industry practices

and explored possible areas of improvement in the social, economic, and environmental realms.

The areas of improvement are addressed in the policies of the SEE Evaluation.

3.1.1 Social Development

The social research began with American labor laws. Labor laws are the initial documents

that address social rights of American employees. These American laws are the basis of

American social standards and helped develop corporate social responsibility. Construction

companies must currently operate and perform by the seven laws studied in the literature review.









2.3.2.3 International Organization for Standardization, ISO 14000

The International Organization for Standardization is an international body that contains

representatives from 158 different countries. The International Organization for Standardization

helps to define international standards required by business, governments, and society as a

whole. The primary works of the international organization are the International Standards. The

organization addresses many different topics in these standards.

The ISO 14000, the Environmental Management Standards in Production Environments is

a series of standards that are designed to reduce the negative impacts organizations have on the

environment. The document pertains to the life cycle of a product, not the product. The goal of

the ISO 14000 is to reduce the environmental impact of the production process. The ISO 14000

is composed of six standards ranging from ISO 14001 to 14063. The ISO 14001 is the primary

standard of the ISO 14000. The 14001 gives an outlined structured approach to develop

environmental goals for production process. The ISO 14000 developed performance indicators to

identify the efficiency of the product output.

2.3.2.4 Leadership in Environment Efficiency Design, LEED New Construction 2.2

The Leadership in Environmental Efficiency Design (LEED) certification system has

grown to become a construction industry standards practice. The focus of United States Green

Building Council's (USGBC) LEED certification is to improve the building product. The LEED

New Construction (NC) 2.2 is a point based certification system that is composed of

prerequisites, credits, and points. The LEED certification was formed in the nineties and has

gained tremendous popularity in the construction industry. There are many deficiencies with this

certification system, but it is an attempt to create a better environment for the future. The LEED

certification is composed of six sections focusing on specific areas of the construction product.

The six sections are Sustainable Sites, Water Efficiency, Energy and Atmosphere, Materials and









Policy terms. The insurance program promotes the health of its employee by increasing

the amount of insurance covered by the construction company. A set of subpolicies are

established by the Healthy Living Program. An employee's insurance can range from complete

coverage to no coverage through the Healthy Living Program. Healthy lifestyle subpolicies are

defined by the Healthy Living Program. The decision to not smoke will cover 25% of an

employee's health insurance. If an employee exercises at least three times a week, over thirty

minute intervals, another 25% of the employee' s health insurance will be covered. The

remaining 50% of an employee's health insurance coverage is dedicated to a healthy diet and

decisions. The employee must have healthy lifestyle habits and must be checked by a doctor

every year to ensure the individual is actively well.

4.2.2.4 Benefits Policy 1.2.4 (10/20 points)

The Benefit Policy defines requirements for the employers benefit policy. The 401K is a

retirement plan sponsored by the employer. The 401K is a standard practice for employers to use

but the Benefit Policy sets exact parameters the construction company must operate by to obtain

the points.

Purpose. The Benefit Policy encourages employees to save for their financial future. The

purpose of the Benefit Policy is to define a benefit standard that companies need to uphold and to

define the specific parameters set by benefit programs. Figure 4-3 helps to define and explain the

parameters of the Benefit Policy.

Policy terms. To receive 10 points, the employer must offer a voluntary 401K retirement

plan to all employees after one year of employment. The company must contribute at least 50%

of the employee's contribution of up to 10% of the employee's salary. The construction company

must exceed the industry standards to receive 20 points. A voluntary 401K retirement plan must

be offered to all employees after one year of employment. To receive 20 points for the Benefit










patterns are controlled by the managing party of the corporation. The company maintains the

obligation to the stakeholder to perform and generate profit. This is the basis for all economic

prosperity. The economic performance of a company currently controls the decisions and

operations of a company. There are not many issues that need to be addressed under the

economic research. The research addresses the need for companies to operate transparently. This

practice is becoming more popular due to the corporate social obligations of a company.

2.2.1 History of Economic Responsibility in the Construction Industry

Economic responsibility is the concern of the impact of the company's on the economic

interests of its stakeholders. The history of economic responsibility is based on the expectations

of a construction company to generate a profit for its stockholders. Currently there are safe

guards like transparent reporting that help to protect the interest of the company's stakeholders.

2.2.2 Transparency

The transparency of companies has grown with the popularity of corporate social

responsibility. The term transparency in relation to a corporation implies free communication

and accountability. The concept of a transparent business is a business that holds people

accountable though openly published reports. The primary purpose of being transparent is to

fight corruption. There are many companies that are currently exercise transparent policies and

have disclosure of their financial statements. Reporting transparency is a critical request for

reports to be shown on paper and open to the public. Transparency shows the performance of the

company and indicates that the company is not acting illegally.

2.3 Environmental Dimension

The environment has become a popular topic and concern in the construction industry.

Environmental performance has become a way to differentiate construction companies. In the

United States, buildings use one-third of our total energy, two-thirds of our electricity, one-










management of toxic chemicals. The concept is to eliminate unacceptable or unreasonable risks

and, to the extent economically feasible, to reduce risks posed by toxic chemicals, by employing

a broad based approach involving a wide range of risk reduction options and by taking

precautionary measures derived from a broad based life cycle analysis (United Nations 2005).

Paragraph 19.50 establishes guidance for industry use of toxic chemicals. The agenda identifies

the importance of establishing a code of principles for the use of toxic chemicals that involve a

responsible use approach based on alternative materials replacing toxic chemicals.

In section three, strengthening the role of maj or groups, the implementation of sustainable

development practices into real world applications is explored. Section three acknowledges the

imperative involvement of women, children, nongovernmental organizations, and workers in

sustainable development. Promoting cleaner production is an obj ective set out by Agenda 21. All

companies should increase efficiency of resources, increase reuse and recycling, and reduce the

amount of waste discharge per unit output. The agenda holds companies accountable for their

energy use, companies should practice annual reports on their environmental impact, including

material and resource use. Agenda 21 is not a prescriptive document for companies, but a body

of work that identifies areas of importance that must be addressed to create a sustainable

environment.

Agenda 21 is the United Nation's global blueprint for sustainable development. Agenda 21

was updated by the World Summit for Sustainable Development to further progress the

implementation of sustainable development. The WSSD formed two documents created by the

United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Division of Sustainable

Development. The two documents are the Johannesburg Declaration on Sustainable










Policy the employer must match or exceed a 100% of the employee' s contributions of up to 10%

of the employee' s salary. The individual employee is able to retain all of their contributions and

will obtain 50% of the employer' s contributions with over 2 years of employment and 100% of

the employer' s contributions with five years of employment.

4.2.2.5 Educational Assistance Policy 1.2.5 (15 points)

The Educational Assistance Policy is a 15 point policy that is proposed to advance the

education of employees. The employee's courses should enhance competencies for current tasks,

enhance the performance of the employees current position, or provide the employee new skills

to advance to another position within the construction company. The policy requires the defined

guidelines must be met to obtain the policy's points.

Purpose. The Educational Assistance Policy enables regular full-time employees to attend

continuing education courses to advance themselves. The continual improvement of an

individual is a sustainable practice that helps to develop the individual and the company. The

policy advances knowledge and increases performance.

Policy terms. The Educational Assistance Policy establishes a voluntary program that

provides further education aid for full time employees. The construction company will reimburse

employees for 50% of schooling up to $1,000 per semester for successfully completed courses.

The following subpolicies must be met to obtain furthering education approval:

* Employee must attend an accredited school.

* Employee must not take more than two classes a semester.

* Employee must be a full time employee.

* Employee must not take classes during work hours.

* Employee must provide proof of successful schooling and associated expenditures for
reimbursement.










company. The LEED certification only attempts to improve the building product. It does not

examine or address the construction company's social or economic agenda. The framework will

enforce certified construction companies to operate more efficiently and ethically. The proposed

SEE Evaluation will attempt to change the current harmful practices of construction companies.

1.1.1 Purpose

Sustainable development and green technologies are frequently used terms in the

construction industry. These terms are commonly misunderstood and often used inaccurately.

The scholarly definition of sustainable development is still vague. The standard definition of

sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without

compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs (World Commission on

Environment and Development 1987). Many companies consider themselves to be sustainable

without having a true understanding of the actual meaning. With the growing popularity of being

environmentally friendly and the unregulated use of the term, any company can say that they are

sustainable and often do.

The purpose of creating the independent certification system is to make construction

companies operate in an ethical manner, save energy, reduce waste, and use appropriate

materials. The drive for businesses to become certified would be derived through governmental

incentives, ethics, and awareness. Each policy must be quantifiable to ensure that proper

decisions are being made. The certification identifies construction companies that are dedicated

to sustainable practices. Through certification, the company will be rewarded and favored in job

selection. The United States government will recognize the need for sustainable practices and

reward companies operating in the required manner. The increased cost to operate in a

sustainable manner will be compensated through increased j obs awarded to the company. The











4.2.4 Obligations to Community and Customers Section .............. ....................6
4.2.4. 1 Client Inform Policy 1.4. 1 (prerequisite ................. ............. ................68
4.2.4.2 Proper Storage of Materials Policy 1.4.2 (prerequisite) ............... .... ...........69
4.2.4.3 Constructive Construction Criticism Policy 1.4.3 (10 points) .....................70
4.2.4.4 Volunteerism Policy 1.4.4 (5 points) .............. ...............70....
4.3 SEE Evaluation, Economic Division ........._... ...... ...............71
4.3.1 Obligation to Stakeholders .............. .. ........ .............7
4.3.1.2 Transparency Policy 2.1.1 (prerequisite) ............... ..... ............... 7
4.3.1.2 Shareholders Statement Policy 2. 1.2 (prerequisite) .................. ...............72
4.4 SEE Evaluation, Environmental Division .............. ...............73....
4.4.1 Office Obligation............... .... .. ... .. .................7
4.4.1.1 New Company Offices and Renovations Policy 3.1.1 (prerequisite) ..........74
4.4. 1.2Compact Florescent Light Bulbs and Energy Star Policy 3.1.2
(prerequi site) .................. ... .. .._ .. ..... ..... ..........7
4.4.1.3 Recycle Program Policy 3.1.3 (prerequisite) .............. ....................7
4.4. 1.4 Water Efficiency Policy 3.1.4 (15 points) ................. ............... ...._...77
4.4. 1.5 Reusable Cup Policy 3.1.5 (5 points) ................. ...............77..........
4.4.2 Site Obligation................ .. .. ... ..................7
4.4.2.1 Waste Diversion Policy 3.2.1 (25 points) .............. ....................7
4.4.2.2 Regional Materials Policy 3.2.2 (15 points) ......___ .... .. ...__............79
4.4.2.3 Site Condition Policy 3.2.3 (10 points) ........................ .... ..................79
4.4.2.4 Leadership in Environmental Efficient Design (LEED) Accredited
Professional Employee Policy 3.2.4 (10 points) ......____ ........_ ..............80
4.4.2.5 Electric Documentation Policy 3.2.5 (10 points) ................... ...............8

5 IMPLEMENTATION OF THE SEE EVALUATION AND ASSOCIATED
IMPLICATIONS .............. ...............86....


5.1 Implementation into the Construction Industry ............ ................... ............... ....8
5.1.1 Barriers to Implementation into the Construction Industry ............... ........._......86
5.1.2 Implementation of Performance Indicators ........._.._.. ...._.. ........_.._.....87
5.1.3 Social Implication............... ..............8
5.1.4 Economic Implication ........._.._.. ...._... ...............87..
5.1.5 Environmental Implication ........._...... .. ..._. _.._ ...............88..
5.2 Implementation of SEE Evaluation in a Construction Company .................. ...............88

6 CONCULSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS ................... ...............9

6. 1 Future of the SEE Evaluation ............ ..... .__ ...............90.
6. 1.1 Further Development ............ ..... ._ ...............91..
6. 1.2 Future Collaboration............... .............9
6.2 Conclusion ............ ..... ._ ...............92..

LI ST OF REFERENCE S ............ ..... ._ ...............93...

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH .............. ...............95....














SEE Evaluation Healthy Living Program
AlSblcythe employee auallifes for Select Yes EmplDoyees Name
AISubpoilicy the employee doeis not qualifies for Select No Birth Dale-

Title of Standard Percent Covered Insurance Cvrg uplce
Non Smoke Subpolicy 25% IYes Ian not perform any type of smoking at any time
Exercise Subpolicy 25% IYes Exercise at least (3) 30 min. Intervals a week
Health Subpollicy 50; IYes IHealthy lifestyle habits
100% Percent of Insurance Covered By Company


Figure 4-2. Healthy Living Program, SEE Evaluation Health Insurance Policy.





1 PonI 5,jl.ry Emrployee Conino~ull:n ~,, Employt e Conlim~ul le, n Am,:unIl Emplojyer Cni~nll ulia) n ,~ IEmployver Coirinisonlljl AmousII Coninomsonl~)l Torlsj

I~ n l.. .5 I 1111111 10 1 111.1. II 1. 4 1(II III





2 PoInts~ Sa r~jy Employ~e Centrutul so, n ",, Employ~e Cnlint~ullson Amou nt Emplojypl Cionlrituli jn ",, IEmplojyerla r~jllEbursonI Amounl~ :oIribull son~jl Toralsj~
I~r.pl ,.e= I IIIIll 10 11ilill 10 1111111 ill)III)
I~l*I: ,.?5 i.I'll 10 .11 10 til; $15i II
Ir nllil., c ,. .5 I'I '1'1'E i 1(I 1 '11.11 10 l 111 $ 1 III


Value of Project Point Value
07 to~ 4 999 999 1 :*olnlrt
5~ 000C 000 to 9 59 9 2pints
110I IlII II III II I to~ 119,999 999 F4 p in~tS
II II II II tlo 49 9 9 9 p it
.0 1 1_1_11 II II II I to a tas.e 10 .0 ~ ntS


Figure 4-3. Benefit Policy


Figure 4-4. Proj ect value indicator for SEE Evaluation.









Development and the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation. The other primary goal of the

international conference was to develop a plan to further implement the Agenda 21 document.

2.4.1.4 Global Environmental Management Initiative

The Global Environmental Management Initiative (GEMI) is a not for profit organization

designed to aid in the advance of sustainable development. The organization was created in 1990

and has developed many different documents exploring and advancing areas of sustainable

development. The GEMI motto is "businesses helping business". Many documents have been

produced by the GEMI to enable businesses to evaluate themselves. The GEMI has designed and

developed tools to advance the current status of sustainable development. The GEMI is not a

third party certification and does not require that any particular standard must be met. The GEMI

acknowledges the three primary facets of sustainable development and has created many

different document addressing different topics in each of these three categories. The vision of the

GEMI is to be globally recognized as a leader in providing strategies for businesses to achieve

environmental, health and safety (EHS) excellence, economic success and corporate citizenship

(GEMI 2005). The GEMI has developed tools to enable the easy application of sustainable

practices in an industry. The GEMI is not a certification based organization, but a company that

produces documents and advice to advance sustainable development.

2.4.1.5 International Institute for Sustainable Development

The IISD is a not for profit policy research institute formed in 1990. The Canadian based

organization works with governments, business, and non governmental organizations to form

environmental and social policies. Many valuable documents are made public through the IISD

website. National Strategies for Sustainable Development: Challenges, Approaches and

Innovations in Strategic and Coordinated Action is a document developed and published by the

IISD. The document's goal is to progress sustainable development through implementing









2.4.1.1 Stockholm Conference

The Stockholm Conference was established by the United Nations in 1972. The Stockholm

Conference was the first conference to address the impacts made by humans on the environment.

The conference established a long term strategy to achieve the goal of sustainable development.

The Stockholm Conference goals were to inform and positively affect the future of the world.

The conference recognized the link between the environment and humans and the important role

humans play in the protection of the environment.

2.4.1.2 World Commission on Environment and Development, International Conference on

Environment and Economics, and the Brundtland Report

The term sustainable development was defined in the Brundtland Report published in

1987. Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without

compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs (World Commission on

Environment and Development 1987). The term spurred from the World Commission on

Environment and Development, also known as the Brundtland Commission. The 1983

conference helped to develop strategies to achieve sustainable development. The International

Conference on Environment and Economics helped to develop the Brundtland Report. The

Brundtland Report addresses the importance of nations to be independent and environmentally

responsible. The Brundtland Report received its name in dedication to the former Norwegian

Prime Minster, Harlem Brundtland. Mrs. Brundtland acted as the chair of the World Commission

on Environment and Development and was a maj or contributor the Brundtland report. The World

Commission on Environment and Development, International Conference on Environment and

Economics, and the Brundtland Report paved the way for the Earth Summit and the adoption of

Agenda 21.









the environment. The fourth chapter of Agenda 21 contains information on current consumption

patterns and identifies areas of improvement for nonsustainable habits. Special attention should

be paid to the demand for natural resources generated by unsustainable consumption and to the

efficient use of those resources consistent with the goal of minimizing depletion and reducing

pollution. Changing consumption patterns will require a multipronged strategy focusing on

demand, meeting the basic needs of the poor, and reducing wastage and the use of finite

resources in the production process (United Nations 2005). Efficient production processes must

be developed and waste production must be decreased to be sustainable. Paragraph 4. 18

addresses the need for increased operating efficiency. The paragraph encourages the reduction of

energy and materials per unit of production. If current practices become more efficient, material

amounts reduce and energy costs subside, saving the applicator money. Paragraph 5.11states

awareness should be increased at all levels concerning the need to optimize the sustainable use of

resources through efficient resource management, taking into account the development needs of

the populations of developing countries. Agenda 21 addresses the primary needs of the world' s

population in Chapter 6, protecting human health. Special attention is paid to the health needs of

the elderly and disabled population. Sub-Chapter E, Reducing Health Risk from Environmental

Pollution and Hazards, is an important topic that affects the construction industry. Indoor air

pollution, water pollution, pesticides, and solid waste are topics that reduce health risk. The

Agenda 21 focuses on governmental tasks that include the development of programs and control

technologies.

The second section of the Agenda 21 is conservation and management of resources for

development. The second maj or section is dissected into fourteen chapters. The first chapter is

Protection of the Atmosphere. This chapter includes four program areas. The program areas









LIST OF TERMS


Corruption


The misuse of entrusted power for private gain.


Discrimination


Unfair treatment of a person or group on the basis of prejudice

The quality of being honest, is a value which can be defined in
multiple ways. In the context of human communication, people are
generally said to be honest when they tell the truth to the best of
their knowledge and do not hide what they know or think.


Honesty


Illegal labor


Labor that is not authorized by law


firm adherence to a code of especially moral or artistic values

Development that meets the needs of the present without
compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own
needs

The principle that allows those affected by administrative
decisions, business transactions or charitable work to know not
only the basic facts and Eigures but also the mechanisms and
processes

The whole set of values, issues and processes that companies must
address in order to minimize any harm resulting from their
activities and to create economic, social and environmental value.
This involves being clear about the company's purpose and taking
into consideration the needs of all the company's stakeholders


Integrity


Sustainable Development



Transparency




Triple Bottom Line










the purpose and policy terms. Each topic of the framework specifies policies the company must

maintain to receive certification. Prerequisites establish policies that must be met by the

company to become certified. The points are credits that are able to be selected by the company

to enhance their certification Points specify areas of improvement that may be attempted by a

company. In order to become certified, a specified number of points must be obtained. This

process standardizes requirements to prove a company is acting socially, economically and

environmentally prudent. The goal is to create and develop a third party certification that

advances the current condition of sustainable development in the construction industry.

Maj or, unintended changes are occurring in the atmosphere, in soils, in waters, among
plants and animals. Nature is bountiful but it is also fragile and finely balanced. There are
thresholds that cannot be crossed without endangering the basic integrity of the system.
Today we are close to many of those thresholds. (World Commission on Environment and
Development 1987)










company leaders need to act as examples. The leaders of the company will play a pivotal role in

the success of the SEE Evaluation. They must uphold the policies and insist that their

subordinates abide by them. Each policy that is instituted by the company must include an

explanation for the decision. The decision must define the purpose, reasoning, and positive effect

that the new policy has on the environment.

An example of this would be for a company to send out a demanding letter that banned the

use of Styrofoam cups. If an individual is forbidden to use Styrofoam cups without an

explanation, it is likely that they the demand will be resented. If the policy is approached in a

manner of respect, then it would more likely be embraced. The internal decision to reduce or

eliminate the use of Styrofoam needs to be explained. The policy should explain the reasoning

behind the decision. The explanation should include data about the negative impact of Styrofoam

and disposable waste. The information should include reasoning such as, Styrofoam is composed

of harmful chemicals, takes over 500 years for one cup to disintegrate, and takes up to 25 to 30%

of the current land fill volume in the United States. In addition the company should provide all

the employees with a reusable container, cup, or ceramic mug to properly instill the sense of

environmental responsibility. With this explanation and alternative, the company policy would

most likely be embraces by employees.

4.4.1.1 New Company Offices and Renovations Policy 3.1.1 (prerequisite)

Any new facilities built for use of the company must be LEED or Green Globe certified.

The theory behind this prerequisite is that firms need to practice what they preach. The company

must act as a leader in environmental performance. Any product produced for the use of the

construction company must promote sustainability and should exercise environmentally friendly

practices and products.










LIST OF FIGURES


Figure page

4-1 SEE Evaluation points and prerequisites layout. .............. ...............82....

4-2 Healthy Living Program, SEE Evaluation Health Insurance Policy............... ................83

4-3 Benefit Policy............... ...............83.

4-4 Proj ect value indicator for SEE Evaluation. ................ ...............83..............

4-5 Example Proj ect Calculation for SEE Evaluation, Indoor Air Quality During
Construction ............... ...............84....

4-6 The SEE Evaluation point and prerequisite calculation sheet. ............. ......................8











CHAPTER 2
LITERATURE REVIEW

Since its inception in the early 1980s, sustainable development has been important topic

for the United Nations and various organizations. In the past few years, sustainable development

has become increasing popular with the general population because of environmental awareness

and climate change. The rising consciousness has placed sustainable development in the

forefront of many world leaders' agenda. Sustainable development is divided into three primary

areas of focus. The research will look into these three areas of focus and examine the history,

goals, and concepts of sustainable development. The attempts of previous and current

organizations' to positively influence sustainable development are identified and explored.

The research has been divided into four primary categories that include documents that

pertain to social, economic, environmental aspects of the construction industry. The subject that

binds the first three categories, sustainable development is also explored. The four categories are

divided into subcategories that examine the history, evolution, and current status of the topic.

The history and evolution of the social, economical, and environmental categories are explored

to form a relation to the construction industry's standards and conditions. Sustainable

development documents created by companies and governments are studied to gain insight into

advancing its position. The research addresses the importance of each topic and the progression

of the four categories. Previously designed certification systems, standards, and laws are

examined to define specific areas of focus that can increase sustainable practices in the

construction industry.

2.1 Social Dimension

The social realm of the research relates human society and its modes of organization to the

construction industry. The research examines laws, standards, and certifications in the context of




Full Text

PAGE 1

1 SEE EVALUATION, A COMPREHENSIVE SU STAINABILITY CERTIFICATION FOR THE CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY By JOHN ROBERT BANTING A THESIS PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLOR IDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE MASTER OF SCIENCE IN BUILDING CONSTRUCTION UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2007

PAGE 2

2 2007 John Robert Banting

PAGE 3

3 To my Mother and Father, your love has molded me into the man I am today. Without your care, none of this would be possible.

PAGE 4

4 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS I would like to thank Dr. Charles J. Kibert fo r his true unwavering pa ssion for sustainable construction. He has had a profound effect on my outlook on life. I only hope I can live up to the high standards he sets. I would al so like to thank Dr. R. Raymond Issa and Dr. Jimmie Hinze for their help, guidance, and contributions to the study. It has been a pleasure to work with the entire building construction faculty. Their knowledge and enthusiasm for construction is astounding. Last, but not least, Dottie Beaupied has been such a tremendous help throughout my graduate schooling. She has truly made the Rinker School of Building Construction feel like home. I could never thank her enough for all of the selfless help she has given. I would like to thank each indi vidual who has played a signif icant role in my life; you are all part of me. Through the love of my family a nd girlfriend I understand life This has truly been a poets dream and a workingmans will.

PAGE 5

5 TABLE OF CONTENTS page ACKNOWLEDGMENTS...............................................................................................................4 LIST OF FIGURES................................................................................................................ .........8 LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS..........................................................................................................9 LIST OF TERMS.................................................................................................................. .........10 ABSTRACT....................................................................................................................... ............11 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION..................................................................................................................13 1.1 Building Measurement System.........................................................................................14 1.1.1 Purpose.................................................................................................................. .15 1.1.2 Objective................................................................................................................ .16 1.1.3 Scope Limitations...................................................................................................16 1.2 Outline.................................................................................................................... ..........17 2 LITERATURE REVIEW.......................................................................................................19 2.1 Social Dimension........................................................................................................... ...19 2.1.1 Social Certifications, Sta ndards, and Applicable Laws..........................................20 2.1.1.1 Davis-Bacon Act of 1931.............................................................................21 2.1.1.2 Walsh-Healy Act of 1936.............................................................................21 2.1.1.3 Fair Labor Standard Act of 1938..................................................................22 2.1.1.4 Equal Pay Act of 1963.................................................................................22 2.1.1.5 Civil Rights Act of 1964..............................................................................23 2.1.1.6 Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970...............................................23 2.1.1.7 Public Works Employment Act of 1977......................................................23 2.1.1.8 Social Accountability International, SA 8000..............................................24 2.1.2 Corporate Social Responsibility.............................................................................27 2.1.2.1 Socially responsible corporations.................................................................28 2.1.2.2 International Organization fo r Standardization, ISO 26000........................28 2.2 Economic Dimension........................................................................................................28 2.2.1 History of Economic Responsibil ity in the Construction Industry........................29 2.2.2 Transparency..........................................................................................................29 2.3 Environmental Dimension................................................................................................29 2.3.1 History of Environmental Re sponsibility in Construction.....................................30 2.3.2 Environmental Certifications, Programs, Standards, and Laws.............................30 2.3.2.1 Environmental Protection Agency...............................................................31 2.3.2.2 Energy Star...................................................................................................32 2.3.2.3 International Organization fo r Standardization, ISO 14000........................33

PAGE 6

6 2.3.2.4 Leadership in Environment Efficiency Design, LEED New Construction 2.2....................................................................................................33 2.3.2.5 Green Globes................................................................................................36 2.3.2.6 Eco-Management and Audit Scheme...........................................................37 2.4 Sustainable Development.................................................................................................38 2.4.1 Laws, Standards, Documents, Conferen ces, and Certifications on Sustainable Development................................................................................................................38 2.4.1.1 Stockholm Conference.................................................................................39 2.4.1.3 Agenda 21 and World Summit on Sustainable Development......................40 2.4.1.4 Global Environmental Management Initiative.............................................44 2.4.1.5 International Institute for Sustainable Development....................................44 2.4.1.6 World Business Council for Sustainable Development...............................45 2.4.2 Sustainable Reporting.............................................................................................45 2.4.2.1 Global Reporting Initiative, G3....................................................................46 2.4.2.2 AccountAbility, AA1000 Assurance Standard............................................47 2.5 Summary.................................................................................................................... .......48 3 METHODOLOGY.................................................................................................................49 3.1 SEE Evaluation Design.....................................................................................................49 3.1.1 Social Development................................................................................................49 3.1.2 Economic Development.........................................................................................50 3.1.3 Environmental Development..................................................................................50 3.2 Method of Investigation....................................................................................................51 4 THE SEE EVALUATION.....................................................................................................52 4.1 Company Statement..........................................................................................................53 4.1.1 Company Reporting................................................................................................53 4.1.2 Company Communication......................................................................................53 4.1.3 Company Advances................................................................................................54 4.2 SEE Evaluation, Social Division......................................................................................54 4.2.1 Employees Obligations to the Company................................................................55 4.2.1.1 Ethical Business Conduct Guidelines 1.1.1 (prerequisite)...........................55 4.2.1.2 Substance Abuse Policy 1.1.2 (prerequisite)................................................56 4.2.2 Company Obligations to Employees......................................................................57 4.2.2.1 Safety Policy 1.2.1 (prerequisite).................................................................57 4.2.2.2 Employment Policy 1.2.2 (prerequisite)......................................................59 4.2.2.3 Health Insurance Policy, Healt hy Living Program 1.2.3 (20 points)...........61 4.2.2.4 Benefits Policy 1.2.4 (10/20 points).............................................................62 4.2.2.5 Educational Assistance Policy 1.2.5 (15 points)..........................................63 4.2.2.6 Daycare Policy 1.2.6 (10 points)..................................................................64 4.2.2.7 Indoor Air Quality during Cons truction Policy 1.2.7 (5/10 points).............65 4.2.2.8 Smoking Policy 1.2.8 (5 points)...................................................................66 4.2.3 Obligations to the Subcontracted............................................................................67 4.2.3.1 Supplier Selection Polic y 1.3.1 (prerequisite)..............................................67 4.2.3.1 Supplier Diversity Policy 1.3.2 (15 points)..................................................67

PAGE 7

7 4.2.4 Obligations to Community and Customers Section...............................................68 4.2.4.1 Client Inform Polic y 1.4.1 (prerequisite.......................................................68 4.2.4.2 Proper Storage of Material s Policy 1.4.2 (prerequisite)...............................69 4.2.4.3 Constructive Construction Cr iticism Policy 1.4.3 (10 points).....................70 4.2.4.4 Volunteerism Policy 1.4.4 (5 points)...........................................................70 4.3 SEE Evaluation, Economic Division................................................................................71 4.3.1 Obligation to Stakeholders.....................................................................................71 4.3.1.2 Transparency Policy 2.1.1 (prerequisite).....................................................72 4.3.1.2 Shareholders Statement Policy 2.1.2 (prerequisite).....................................72 4.4 SEE Evaluation, Environmental Division........................................................................73 4.4.1 Office Obligation....................................................................................................73 4.4.1.1 New Company Offices and Renova tions Policy 3.1.1 (prerequisite)..........74 4.4.1.2Compact Florescent Light Bu lbs and Energy Star Policy 3.1.2 (prerequisite).........................................................................................................75 4.4.1.3 Recycle Program Policy 3.1.3 (prerequisite)...............................................76 4.4.1.4 Water Efficiency Policy 3.1.4 (15 points)....................................................77 4.4.1.5 Reusable Cup Policy 3.1.5 (5 points)...........................................................77 4.4.2 Site Obligation........................................................................................................78 4.4.2.1 Waste Diversion Po licy 3.2.1 (25 points)....................................................78 4.4.2.2 Regional Materials Po licy 3.2.2 (15 points).................................................79 4.4.2.3 Site Condition Policy 3.2.3 (10 points)........................................................79 4.4.2.4 Leadership in Environmental Efficient Design (LEED) Accredited Professional Employee Policy 3.2.4 (10 points)...................................................80 4.4.2.5 Electric Documentation Policy 3.2.5 (10 points).........................................81 5 IMPLEMENTATION OF THE SEE EVALUATION AND ASSOCIATED IMPLICATIONS................................................................................................................... .86 5.1 Implementation into the Construction Industry................................................................86 5.1.1 Barriers to Implementation in to the Construction Industry....................................86 5.1.2 Implementation of Performance Indicators............................................................87 5.1.3 Social Implication...................................................................................................87 5.1.4 Economic Implication............................................................................................87 5.1.5 Environmental Implication.....................................................................................88 5.2 Implementation of SEE Evaluation in a Construction Company.....................................88 6 CONCULSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS.................................................................90 6.1 Future of the SEE Evaluation...........................................................................................90 6.1.1 Further Development..............................................................................................91 6.1.2 Future Collaboration...............................................................................................91 6.2 Conclusion................................................................................................................. .......92 LIST OF REFERENCES............................................................................................................. ..93 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH.........................................................................................................95

PAGE 8

8 LIST OF FIGURES Figure page 4-1 SEE Evaluation points a nd prerequisites layout................................................................82 4-2 Healthy Living Program, SEE Evaluation Health Insurance Policy..................................83 4-3 Benefit Policy............................................................................................................. ........83 4-4 Project value indicator for SEE Evaluation.......................................................................83 4-5 Example Project Calculation for SEE Evaluation, Indoor Air Quality During Construction................................................................................................................... ....84 4-6 The SEE Evaluation point and pr erequisite calculation sheet...........................................85

PAGE 9

9 LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS CSR Corporate social responsibility EMAS Eco-management and audit scheme EMR Emergency modification rating EPA Environmental protection agency GEMI Global environmental management initiative GRI Global reporting initiative IISD International institute for sustainable development ISO International organization for standardization LEED Leadership in environment efficiency design SAI Social accountability international USGBC United states green building council WBCSD World business for sustainable development WCED World commission on environment and development WSSD World summit on sustainable development

PAGE 10

10 LIST OF TERMS Corruption The misuse of entrusted power for private gain. Discrimination Unfair treatment of a pe rson or group on the basis of prejudice Honesty The quality of being honest, is a value which can be defined in multiple ways. In the context of human communication, people are generally said to be honest when th ey tell the truth to the best of their knowledge and do not hide what they know or think. Illegal labor Labor that is not authorized by law Integrity firm adherence to a code of especially moral or artistic values Sustainable Development Deve lopment that meets the need s of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs Transparency The principle that allo ws those affected by administrative decisions, business transactions or charitable work to know not only the basic facts and figures but also the mechanisms and processes Triple Bottom Line The whole set of values issues and processes that companies must address in order to minimize any harm resulting from their activities and to create economic, social and environmental value. This involves being clear about the company's purpose and taking into consideration the needs of all the company's stakeholders

PAGE 11

11 Abstract of Thesis Presen ted to the Graduate School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Science in Build ing Construction SEE EVALUATION, A COMPREHENSIVE SU STAINABILITY CERTIFICATION FOR THE CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY By John Robert Banting December 2007 Chair: Charles J. Kibert Cochair: R. Raymond Issa Major: Building Construction The majority of sustainable practices in the construction industry are based on the construction product, caused by the popularity of th e Leadership in Environmentally Efficient Design (LEED) program, the primary division of the United States Green Building Council. The LEED program certifies the construction produ ct, which has a profound effect on the built environment but, overlooks many aspects of the construction industry that could improve from sustainable practices. Currently, there is not a cons truction certification that addresses the social, economic, and environmental aspects of sustai nability through the companys policies. The purpose of the research was to develop a su stainable certification system that evaluates construction companies based on their social, eco nomic, and environmental performance. Laws, standards, certifications, and various documents he lped to develop a set of policies that equally evaluate small, medium, and large constr uction companies. The Social, Economic, and Environmental (SEE) Evaluation is tailored to the construction indus try, identifying specific areas of improvement towards sustainability. Construction companies ar e evaluated on topics developed beneath the three pronged, social, eco nomic, and environmental framework. Each policy focuses on a topic, with the goal to crea te a sustainable construc tion industry that meets

PAGE 12

12 the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. The SEE Evaluation is one step on the path towards sustainable development for an industry that is in desp erate need for change.

PAGE 13

13 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION The worlds population is growing at an alar ming rate. According to the U.S. Census Bureau there are currently over si x billion people on the earth, w ith a projection of over nine billion people by the year 2050 (United States Cens us Bureau 2007). If it is possible to meet the growing needs of the human race, our resources must be better managed and energy used more efficiently. America is one of the worlds larges t consumers of energy pe r capita, exceeding both China and India. This consumer based societys po licies have enabled Americans to lose sight of operating efficiently and the harm it is doing to the environment. The worlds resources are rapidly being depleted to meet the high de mands of growing populations. Continuing on the unchanged consumptive path, the same capitalisti c concept that has made America a world leader, will eventually lead to its downfall. It is clear there is a need for change. A drastic reduction in resource and energy consumption ne eds to occur. The change will not occur over night. It will require a change in the way i ndividuals and companies currently operate. The development of third party certifications has aided in the fight for sustainable living. There have been many documents created by the United Nations, organizations, and governments to increase sustainable practices. These documents contain information that is pertinent to the construction industry. Currentl y, there are no sustainable certification systems that directly focus on the construction industrys standards. The research will help to design a third party certification pertai ning to sustainable development, specifically relating to the construction industry. The rating system is based on the three primary areas of sustainability. The Social, Economic, and Environmental (SEE) Evaluation is a third party sustainable certification tailored to evaluate construction companies. The framework will identify policies and rate construction companies based on their pe rformance. The SEE Evaluation is not a cure

PAGE 14

14 for the worlds dilemmas, but a progressive step in the right direction for an industry that is in desperate need for change. The evaluation will he lp construction companies identify deficiencies and operate more efficiently. The sustainable movement will take form in minor advances and understanding. Experience has shown that a pathway to sustainable development cannot be charted in advance. Rather, the pathway must be navigated through processes of learning and adaptation (Clark and Kates 1999). The SEE Evaluati on is a progressive step in a new direction for the construction industry. 1.1 Building Measurement System Construction companies, suppliers, and subc ontractors are important participants in making a shift towards a sustainable built envi ronment. The United States Green Building Council states that in the United States, buildings use one third of our total energy, two thirds of our electricity, one eighth of our water (USGBC 2005). Companies cons tantly claim that they are sustainable, but there is no thir d party organization that has deve loped set of policies to certify them. The proposed certification will identify credible construc tion companies. The rating will evaluate and inform the company, employees, clients, and sharehol ders of a companys performance in the social, economic, and enviro nmental aspects of sustainability, identifying specific areas of needed improvement. The im partial third party ve rification process is specifically tailored to certify construction comp anies based on their level of performance in the social, economic, and environmental categorie s. The policies of th e framework exceed the current requirements set by law. The SEE Ev aluation shows a companys commitment to sustainable development and the future of society. Many construction companies have become involved with the Leadership in Energy Environmental Design (LEED) certification. The LEED certification certifies and awards the construction product, but has very little effect on the policies and practices of a construction

PAGE 15

15 company. The LEED certification only attempts to improve the building product. It does not examine or address the construction companys so cial or economic agenda. The framework will enforce certified construction companies to oper ate more efficiently and ethically. The proposed SEE Evaluation will attempt to change the current harmful practices of construction companies. 1.1.1 Purpose Sustainable development and green technologi es are frequently used terms in the construction industry. These terms are commonl y misunderstood and often used inaccurately. The scholarly definition of sust ainable development is still va gue. The standard definition of sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future ge nerations to meet their own needs (World Commission on Environment and Development 1987). Many companie s consider themselves to be sustainable without having a true understand ing of the actual meaning. With the growing popularity of being environmentally friendly and the unregulated use of the term, any company can say that they are sustainable and often do. The purpose of creating the independent certif ication system is to make construction companies operate in an ethical manner, save energy, reduce waste, and use appropriate materials. The drive for businesses to become certified would be derived through governmental incentives, ethics, and awareness. Each policy must be quantifiable to ensure that proper decisions are being made. The certification identi fies construction companies that are dedicated to sustainable practices. Through certification, the company will be rewarded and favored in job selection. The United States government will rec ognize the need for sustainable practices and reward companies operating in the required ma nner. The increased cost to operate in a sustainable manner will be compensated through increased jobs awarded to the company. The

PAGE 16

16 evaluation identifies areas of improvement th at have previously been unidentified or unacknowledged. The advantage of the third part y certification is that it en sures all certifie d companies are upholding the SEE policies and operating in a proper manner. The third part y certification takes the responsibility of reporti ng out of the construction compan ies hands and creates a level playing field for all certified companies. The inde pendent certifications ov erall goal is to ensure construction companies policies and performan ces are in line with sustainable practices. 1.1.2 Objective The objective of the study is to design a third party sustainable certification system developed specifically for construction companie s. The SEE Evaluation will assess construction companies on the social, economic, and environmental aspects of sustainability: Policies directly pertaining to construction will be designed be neath the three pronged framework. The defined policies are limited to the control and capabilitie s of the contractors role. The company must meet the policys requirements to receive the associated points. S ubcategories will identify areas of the construction indus try that could be improved to advance sustainable development. The policies will be derived from previous and existin g third party verification systems, standards, and laws and then tailored to the construction industry. The primary objec tives of the research are to design a framework that enables construction companies to be properly evaluated on their social, economic, and environmental performance; based on the framework, develop a third party evaluation system, the (SEE) Evaluation. 1.1.3 Scope Limitations The research investigates the primary asp ects of sustainability when applied to the construction industry. The research is limited to the capabilities and decision making power of

PAGE 17

17 the contractor. Design-build and construction ma nagement firms were not considered for the formation of the SEE Evaluation. The research examines previous documents created by organizations, governments, and the United Nati ons to gain knowledge about the goals of sustainable development. Construction companie s were not considered a primary source of information. The research was guided by organiza tions that publish su stainable development documents and specialize in the advancement of sustainable development. Development of each SEE Evaluation topic and the implementation of th e third party certificat ion for the construction industry are explored. 1.2 Outline The formation of the framework is a detailed pr ocess that begins with the exploration of all documents dealing with any of the three aspects of sustainable development. Laws, documents, standards, and certifications that deal with any division of sustainable development will be researched. Research will be gathered and dissected for information that directly pertains to the construction industry. The literature review descri bes the creation of orga nizations and formation of documents pertaining to sustainable developmen t. The documents will be studied to assist in the development of the SEE Evaluations policies. The research will help to explain how each policy will help to create a sustainable devel opment. The frameworks policies will be guided by the research, but are not limited to the rese arch information. The research will act as a cornerstone source to substa ntiate the evaluation. The certification will be divi ded into three primary divi sions: social, economic and environmental, creating the acronym SEE. The thr ee divisions of the fram ework are divided into further detail by separating the major divisions into sections. Sections are defined areas of interest that pertain to construc tion. Each section is composed of Policies. Policies can either be prerequisites or points that pertain to a specific topic. Each to pic is composed of two paragraphs,

PAGE 18

18 the purpose and policy terms. Each topic of the framework specifies policies the company must maintain to receive certificati on. Prerequisites establish policies that must be met by the company to become certified. The points are credits that are able to be selected by the company to enhance their certification Points specify ar eas of improvement that may be attempted by a company. In order to become certified, a specified number of points must be obtained. This process standardizes requirements to prove a company is acting socially, economically and environmentally prudent. The goal is to create and develop a third part y certification that advances the current condition of sustainable development in the construction industry. Major, unintended changes are occurring in th e atmosphere, in soils, in waters, among plants and animals. Nature is bountiful but it is also fragile and fine ly balanced. There are thresholds that cannot be crossed without e ndangering the basic integrity of the system. Today we are close to many of those thresholds. (World Commission on Environment and Development 1987)

PAGE 19

19 CHAPTER 2 LITERATURE REVIEW Since its inception in the early 1980s, sustai nable development has been important topic for the United Nations and various organizations. In the past few years, sustainable development has become increasing popular with the general population because of environmental awareness and climate change. The rising consciousness has placed sustainable development in the forefront of many world leaders agenda. Sustainable development is divided into three primary areas of focus. The research will look into these three areas of focus and examine the history, goals, and concepts of sustainable developmen t. The attempts of previous and current organizations to positively influence sustaina ble development are identified and explored. The research has been divided into four pr imary categories that include documents that pertain to social, economic, envir onmental aspects of the construc tion industry. The subject that binds the first three categories, sustainable develo pment is also explored. The four categories are divided into subcategories that examine the history, evolution, a nd current status of the topic. The history and evolution of the social, economi cal, and environmental categories are explored to form a relation to the construction indus trys standards and c onditions. Sustainable development documents created by companies and governments are studied to gain insight into advancing its position. The resear ch addresses the importance of each topic and the progression of the four categories. Previously designed ce rtification systems, standards, and laws are examined to define specific areas of focus th at can increase sustainable practices in the construction industry. 2.1 Social Dimension The social realm of the research relates human society and its modes of organization to the construction industry. The research examines laws, standards, and certificatio ns in the context of

PAGE 20

20 American history. The social rights in construc tion begin with American laws. American labor laws were developed through the twentieth centu ry to continually adva nce the rights of the American workforce. Laws were developed to advocate the fair treatment of all employees. Throughout the history of the United States, government regul ations and company policies have been primary controls for social justice. Third party certifications are a recent development that has advanced employee rights. Over the past thirty years, there have been advances in corporate social responsibility th rough the development of third party certifi cations. Third party certification organizations have th e ability to set the current soci al standards in America. The social dimension of the research is defined by American laws, third part y verification systems, and corporate policies. 2.1.1 Social Certifications, Sta ndards, and Applicable Laws In the United States there have been many la ws, standards, and certi fications created to protect the rights of individuals. Safety, minimum wage, child labor, gender and race discrimination are all issues addressed in Americ an labor laws. The government has an integral role in the protection of employees in the United States. Laws have been created to ensure that employees earn fair wages and have equal opportun ity. In the past, social justice was reliant upon laws to regulate the quality of working condi tions. There has recently been a transition to corporate social responsibility. Recently compan ies have considered it a moral obligation to provide employees with a defined basic quality of life. The current status of the social equality is based on a companys willingness to be evalua ted by third party certifications and form corporate social responsibility st andards and policies. The seal of a third party evaluation enables an employer to differentiate themselves from othe r companies. A brief history of laws, standards, and certifications based on social justice in the United States is explored in order to understand

PAGE 21

21 the evolution of social responsibility in the co nstruction industry. The research begins with American laws and progresses to the mo st recent standards and certifications. 2.1.1.1 Davis-Bacon Act of 1931 The Davis-Bacon Act of 1931 was the first b ill to be passed which advanced employee rights in the United States. Th e Davis-Bacon Act requires all contractors and subcontractors working on government construction projects pay their employees the prevailing wage which is determined by the Secretary of Labor. The Act guarantees that all employees who work on a public project will be paid the local prevailing wage including e ducational, pension, and health benefits. Contractors and subcont ractors that are found guilty of not paying the prevailing wages on government jobs will be replaced. The contractor or subcontractor is held responsible for all costs incurred during the replacement process. If a contract or or subcontractor does not abide by the act, then they will be placed on a list that will prohibit them from bidding on a public project. If the contractor is unable to pay back charges ow ed to the workers, the comptroller is allowed to pay the workers, and the government has the power to sue the contractor a nd sureties whether or not the workers agreed to the pay given to them by the contractor. The President of the United States has the power to suspend the act at a time of emergency. 2.1.1.2 Walsh-Healy Act of 1936 The Walsh-Healy Act of 1936 was designed to require contractors performing government work to pay a minimum wage. The WalshHealy Act set basic standards for employees working on government contracts exceeding $10,000. The Secr etary of Labor determines the minimum wage. Child labor and convict labor was outlawed on government contracts. The act set the standard of an eight-hour day and forty-hour work week. The Wa lsh-Healy Act established that an employee was entitled to be paid time and a half for overtime. The Walsh-Healey Public Contracts Act (PCA) applies to contractors with contra cts in excess of $10,000 for the

PAGE 22

22 manufacturing or furnishing of ma terials, supplies, articles, or equipment to the U.S. government or the District of Columbia. The Act covers em ployees who produce, assemble, handle, or ship goods under these contracts (United St ates Department of Labor 1976). 2.1.1.3 Fair Labor Standard Act of 1938 The Fair Labor Standard Act of 1938 was fo rmed to create a federal minimum wage standard. The Fair Labor Standard Act establis hed minimum wage and overtime standards for all employees. The Fair Labor Standard Act a ddresses and regulates minimum wage, work exceeding the standard workweek, child labor and discrimination. There are many issues that the Fair Labor Standard Act of 1938 does addre ss however it does not require or address vacation, holiday, severance, or sick pay; meal or rest periods, holidays, or vacations; premium pay for weekend or holiday work; pay raises or fringe benefits; discharge notice, reason for disc harge, or immediate payment of final wages to terminated employees. 2.1.1.4 Equal Pay Act of 1963 The Equal Pay Act of 1963 is the first legislati on to address the issue of female employees being underpaid due to their sex. The law stipul ates No employer having employees subject to any provisions of this section shall discrimina te, within any establishment in which such employees are employed, between employees on th e basis of sex by paying wages to employees in such establishment at a rate less than the ra te at which he pays wages to employees of the opposite sex in such establishment for equal wo rk on jobs the performance of which requires equal skill, effort, and responsibility (U.S Equal Employment Opportunity Commission 1997).

PAGE 23

23 The Equal Pay Act of 1963 corrects the unethical practice of paying females less for performing the same job as their male counterparts. 2.1.1.5 Civil Rights Act of 1964 President Lyndon Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act of 1964 into law on July 2, 1964. Title VI, and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act have a profound affect on the construction industry. Title VI of the Act prot ects persons from discrimination on the basis of race, color, and national origin in prog rams and activities. Title VII focuses on outlawing discrimination in employment in any business on the basis of race, religion, sex, or national origin. The law also outlaws retaliation against employees who oppose unlawful discrimination. 2.1.1.6 Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 The governments concern for workplace safe ty resulted in the creation of the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) was created by this ac t. OSHA focuses on creating a safe work environment in eight major industry categories. The construction industry is one of the eight major categories. The federal law applies to priv ate and public employers. The intent of OSHA is to prevent work-related injuries, illnesses, and deaths. OSHA will fine or shut down jobs because of incompliant practices. OSHA en sures that all workers have the opportunity to work in a safe, hazard-free environment. The Occupational Safe ty and Health Act of 1970 was created to provide a safe work environment for all employees. 2.1.1.7 Public Works Employment Act of 1977 Public Works Employment Act of 1977 supports the development of small disadvantaged businesses. The act addresses goals for minority and women owned businesses. A specific percentage goal for procurement from these businesses is addressed in the Public Works Employment Act. The Disadvant aged Business Enterprises Program attempts to ensure that

PAGE 24

24 minority owned companies have the opportunity to grow and become independent. This enables disadvantaged businesses to develop and co mpete with non-disadvant aged businesses. 2.1.1.8 Social Accountability International, SA 8000 The Social Accountability 8000 is a standard for working conditions developed by Social Accountability International (SA I). The SAI is an organization that promotes human rights for workers. Found in 1996, the SA 8000 is the prin cipal work of the SAI. The SA 8000 was composed and published in 1997 and updated in 2001.T he SA 8000 specifies standards for social accountability. It is comprised of nine sections, addressing child la bor, forced labor, health and safety, collective bargaining, disciplinary practices, working hours, remuneration, and management systems. The child labor section of the SA 8000 is composed of four requirements. The first portion of the section stipulates that companies cannot engage in or support the use of child labor. The definition of child labor according to SAI is any work by a child less than 15 years of age, unless local minimum age law stipulates a higher age fo r work or mandatory schooling in which case the higher age would apply the age specified in the above definition of a child, except as provided for by ILO Recommendation 146. If, howev er, local minimum age law is set at 14 years of age in accordance with developingcountry exceptions under ILO Convention 138, the lower age will apply (SAI 2001). Paragraph 1.2 informs a company that it must document, maintain, and communicate company policy for child labor remediation. Paragraph 1.3 explicitly states that the company shall establish, docum ent, maintain, and effectively communicate to personnel and other interested pa rties policies and procedures for promotion of education for children covered under ILO Recommendation 146 and young workers who are subject to local compulsory education laws or are attending school including means to ensure that no such child or young worker is employed during school hours and that combined hours of daily

PAGE 25

25 transportation to and from work and school, school, and work time does not exceed 10 hours a day (SAI 2001). The last paragraph of section 1 addresses child and young worker safety. The paragraph informs companies that they shal l not place children in unsafe, unhealthy, or hazardous environments. The SA 8000 defines the limitation of labor for certification by the SAI Forced labor is not a major concern in the Am erican construction industry but is addressed by paragraph 2.1 of the SA 8000. In order to be certified, the company cannot use, endorse, or support the use of forced labor. According to paragraph 2.1, a company may not withhold an employees identification upon employment. The health and safety of employees is addr essed in the third section of the SA 8000. The health and safety section is divided into six pa ragraphs. Each paragraph establishes a standard, which must be met to be certified by the SA I. Paragraph 3.1 demands that a safe working environment must be provided for all employ ees. The standard hazards of the industry are recognized but note that sufficient steps must be taken to ensure worker safety. Accident prevention is essential for any company and will occur through exercising extreme caution for employee well being. Paragraph 3.2 mandates that a senior management representative is responsible for the implementation of the health and safety portion of the SA 8000. The specified senior manager is also responsible for the hea lth and safety of all personnel. Employees must receive health and safety training for the tasks which they are performing specified in paragraph 3.3. Established by section 3.4, detection systems must be set in place to ensure the health and safety of all employees. The certification sy stem identifies and demands access to clean bathrooms, potable water, and sa nitary facilities for food storag e for all personnel in paragraph 3.5. Paragraph 3.6 requires that employers provide a clean, safe facility for employees. It is imperative for the employer to provide a healthy and safe work environment.

PAGE 26

26 The fourth major topic identified by the SA 8000 is freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining. The employ ee must maintain the right to form and join unions. The employee must be allowed to bargain for wage s and benefits only limited by law. The third paragraph ensures that the pers onnels representatives are not discriminated against and have access to the represented employee at work. The SA 8000s fifth section identifies standa rds based on discrimina tion. The criteria for certification are based on three paragraphs covering discrimina tion. The primary concept of the fifth section is that a company cannot discriminate on a person dur ing any part of the hiring and employment process. A person may not be discri minated against because of race, gender, sexual orientation, national orig in, religion, or age. Paragraph 5.2 e liminates the ability for a company to limit personal beliefs and paragraph 5.3 demands that no sexual, threatening, or abusive terms, gestures, or contact are dire cted toward any personnel. The disciplinary practices of the SA 8000 establish a policy that companies must follow to be certified by the SAI. The SA 8000 requires that the company may not use, support, or condone corporal punishment, mental or physi cal coercion, and verbal abuse (SAI 2001). The criteria to meet the SA 8000s standards for work hours require that the company will comply with all laws and industry standards. The SAI recognizes that a standard workweek should not exceed 48 hours and that all employ ees must have at least one day off every consecutive seven-day period. The policy also defines limits on overtime. Overtime must be reimbursed at a premium rate and cannot exceed 12 hours over the standard time limit of a workweek for each employee. Paragraph 7.2 mandates that overtime shall be completely voluntary other than stated in section 7.3. Paragraph 7.3 explicitly states, where the company is party to a collective bargaining agreement freel y negotiated with worker organizations (as

PAGE 27

27 defined by the ILO) representing a significant por tion of its workforce, it may require overtime work in accordance with such agreement to meet short-term business demand (SAI 2001). Any such agreement must comply with the requirements prescribed by paragraph 7.1 Remuneration is covered in the eighth sec tion of SA 8000. The requirements of the eighth section are all wages for personnel must meet the legal minimum wage and industry standard. The funds must be sufficient to meet basic hum an needs and additional discretionary income. Paragraph 8.2 eliminates the ability of a comp any to withhold wages fo r disciplinary reasons. Wages and benefits must be in compliance with all laws. The SA 8000 does not allow companies to form agreements with personnel to redu ce its social obligati on to the employee. The ninth and last criteri on described by the SA 8000 is a management system. The management system is defined by 14 paragraphs that address the developmental roles and policies developed by the SA 8000. The company mu st form a social accountability policy based on the requirements set in the ninth chapter. Up per level managements must create the policy of the management system. The management policy must include a commitment to conform to all proposed guidelines in the previous sections of the SA 8000, comply with all applicable laws, and commit to constantly improve. The document a nd all procedures must be carried out to its specifications, available to the public, and unde rstood by all personnel. The management must review and update the policies to the companys potential. 2.1.2 Corporate Social Responsibility Though the government still plays a large role in social equality of employees, many corporations have taken the role into their own hands. The term corporate social responsibility (CSR) has become a key phrase in the business wo rld since the early 1970s. CSR is the concept that organizations have an obligation to employ ees, clients, shareholders and communities in every aspect of their operation. Many businesses have realized the implementation of CSR into

PAGE 28

28 the company helps to meet the employees need s and betters the performance of the company. CSR is a process of continual improvement that is closely related to social aspect of sustainable development. Corporate social responsibility is the continuing commitment by business to behave ethically and contribute to economic development while improving the quality of life of the workforce and their families as well as of the local community and society at large (WBCSD 1999). 2.1.2.1 Socially responsible corporations The increasing popularity of being socially re sponsible has taken large corporations by storm. Starbucks and Toshiba are just a few of the corporations that are committed to social responsibility. With the abundance of negative attention of corpor ations in the early nineties caused by corruption, companies have attempted to find a way to separate and define themselves as a socially responsible co mpany. Starbucks and Toshiba are defining their companys reputation through third party ev aluations and Corporate Soci al Responsibility reports. Companies have begun to evaluate their soci al performance through employee satisfaction surveys and other quantifiable methods. 2.1.2.2 International Organization for Standardization, ISO 26000 The International Organization for Standard ization, the world leader in developing international standards, will be coming out with a document on social responsibility in the near future. The document will be named the ISO 26000 or ISO SR. The ISO 26000 is expected to be released in 2008 and will focus on defining st andards for corporate social responsibility. 2.2 Economic Dimension The economic and social dimensions are clos ely related. The economic dimension contains much of the information gathered for the social section of the literature review. Employees are directly related to the economi c performance and requirements of a company. Current economic

PAGE 29

29 patterns are controlled by the managing party of the corporation. The company maintains the obligation to the stakeholder to perform and generate profit. This is the basis for all economic prosperity. The economic performance of a co mpany currently controls the decisions and operations of a company. There are not many i ssues that need to be addressed under the economic research. The research addresses the need for companies to operate transparently. This practice is becoming more popular due to the corporate social oblig ations of a company. 2.2.1 History of Economic Responsibili ty in the Construction Industry Economic responsibility is the concern of th e impact of the companys on the economic interests of its stakeholders. Th e history of economic responsibility is based on the expectations of a construction company to generate a profit for its stockholders. Currently there are safe guards like transparent reporting that help to prot ect the interest of the companys stakeholders. 2.2.2 Transparency The transparency of companies has grown with the popularity of corporate social responsibility. The term transpar ency in relation to a corporation implies free communication and accountability. The concept of a transparen t business is a business that holds people accountable though openly published reports. The primary purpose of being transparent is to fight corruption. There are many companies that ar e currently exercise tr ansparent policies and have disclosure of their financial statements. Re porting transparency is a critical request for reports to be shown on paper and open to the publi c. Transparency shows the performance of the company and indicates that the co mpany is not acting illegally. 2.3 Environmental Dimension The environment has become a popular topic and concern in the c onstruction industry. Environmental performance has b ecome a way to differentiate c onstruction companies. In the United States, buildings use one-third of our to tal energy, two-thirds of our electricity, one-

PAGE 30

30 eighth of our water, and transf orm land that provides valuable ecological resources (USGBC 2). The primary existing environmental certificat ions focus on the product of construction and neglect the construction company. The environmen tal research explores documents created by independent organizations, the United St ates government, and the United Nations. 2.3.1 History of Environmental Resp onsibility in Construction Environmental responsibility is a fairly new concept in th e United States but people are becoming aware that there are limited resources available for consumption. The United States government has identified and ac knowledged the importance of pr otecting the environment. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) was es tablished by the United States government in 1970 to help protect and preserve the environmen t. The EPA has been the primary control of environmental policies and practices throughout American history, until recent times. The environment has become a popular topic in Am erica and has influenced the construction industry. The construction industry is a large consum er of natural resources and energy. With the rise sustainable construc tion, the construction industry has be come inundated with environmental certifications. One of the most recognized constr uction certifications is the United States Green Building Councils (USGBC) Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program. The program attempts to advance and improve the quality of the environment through improving the building product. This sustainable certification influences construction products and avoids the process and policie s of construction companies. 2.3.2 Environmental Certifications, Programs, Standards, and Laws In recent times, environmentally friendly and responsible certif ication systems have become increasingly popular because of global wa rming and environmental awareness. There are also many laws enforcing environmental protec tion. Current laws do not eliminate or control pollution to the extent needed to create a sust ainable society. The cons truction industry has an

PAGE 31

31 enormous effect on the natural and built environm ent and through sustainable practice can have a positive effect on the environment. The environmental research examines current and previous programs, laws, standards, and certifications to gain insight into the protection of the environment. 2.3.2.1 Environmental Protection Agency Laws and regulations are two major tools in protecting the environment. Congress passed a 1970s law that created the Envi ronmental Protection Agency (EPA). The EPA was created to govern the United States in its environmental practices. The EPA was a response to the public demand for cleaner water, air, and land. The primar y goal of the EPA is to protect human health and the environment. The EPA is involved in ma ny aspects of the environment; it develops and enforces environmental regulations, performs environmental research, and offers finical assistance for specialized environmental programs. The Envirosense Program created by the EPA provides information on pollution prevention and the Waste Minimization Program focuses on waste reduction. There are EPA programs that focus on air, pesticides, pollution prevention, toxics and chemicals, water, waste, and recyc ling. Many of the EPA topics affect the manner in which construction companies operate. Since 1970, the EPA has been working for a cleaner, healthier environment for America. Characterization of Building re lated Construction and Demolit ion Debris in the United States is a major report completed for th e EPA (Franklin Associates 1998). The EPA commissioned a report by Franklin Associates to examine construction and demolition debris in the United States. The report is broken into gene ration and management sections. The generation and management sections are divided by reside ntial and nonresidential construction. The report was commissioned by the EPA to have an understanding of how much waste was being generated by construction, demolition, and renova tion and what types of waste were being

PAGE 32

32 generated. The report estimated 136 million tons of building related construction and demolition debris was generated in 1996. Forty three percent of the waste was generated from residential sources and 57 % is from non-residentia l sources (Franklin Associates 1998). Wood is the largest component of waste mate rial generated at c onstruction sites and concrete is the largest component of building demo lition debris. Thirty five to forty five percent of construction and demolition debris was land filled and 20% to 30% was recycled. The most common materials recycled were concrete, aspha lt, metals, and wood. Metals have the highest recycling rate among recovered construction materi als. Currently over 85% of steel is recycled. The EPAs report on construction and demolition debris helps to identify areas of needed improvement for the construction industry. 2.3.2.2 Energy Star Energy Star is a voluntary market based pa rtnership designed to offer businesses and consumers with effective energy efficient solutions. It saves energy, money, and the environment. The labeling program is designed to identify and promote energy efficient products to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Energy Star is a joint program of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy. It helps to save money and protect the environment by using energy efficient products and practices. Energy Star works with more than 8,000 private and public sector organizations and has been a leader in the United States for energy conservation. It has had an influence on the use of technological innovations like LED traffic lights, efficient fluorescent lighting, power management systems for office equipment, and low standby energy use. Energy Star labels over fifty different pr oduct categories. Programs like Energy Star are playing a vital ro le in efforts to reduce greenhouse gas. Energy Star has saved Americans over $12 billion on their energy bills and has reduced a comparable amount of greenhouse gas emissions.

PAGE 33

33 2.3.2.3 International Organization for Standardization, ISO 14000 The International Organization for Standardizat ion is an internationa l body that contains representatives from 158 different countries. Th e International Organizat ion for Standardization helps to define international standards required by business, governments, and society as a whole. The primary works of the international or ganization are the Intern ational Standards. The organization addresses many different topics in these standards. The ISO 14000, the Environmental Management Standards in Production Environments is a series of standards that are designed to reduc e the negative impacts organizations have on the environment. The document pertains to the life cy cle of a product, not the product. The goal of the ISO 14000 is to reduce the environmental impact of the production process. The ISO 14000 is composed of six standards ranging from ISO 14001 to 14063. The ISO 14001 is the primary standard of the ISO 14000. The 14001 gives an outlined structured approach to develop environmental goals for production process. Th e ISO 14000 developed performance indicators to identify the efficiency of the product output. 2.3.2.4 Leadership in Environment Efficien cy Design, LEED New Construction 2.2 The Leadership in Environmental Efficien cy Design (LEED) certification system has grown to become a construction industry standa rds practice. The focus of United States Green Building Councils (USGBC) LEED certification is to improve the building product. The LEED New Construction (NC) 2.2 is a point based certification syst em that is composed of prerequisites, credits, and points. The LEED cer tification was formed in the nineties and has gained tremendous popularity in the construction i ndustry. There are many deficiencies with this certification system, but it is an attempt to create a better environment for the future. The LEED certification is composed of six sections focu sing on specific areas of the construction product. The six sections are Sustainabl e Sites, Water Efficiency, Ener gy and Atmosphere, Materials and

PAGE 34

34 Resources, Indoor Environmental Air Quality, an d Innovation and Design. The majority of viable information from LEED was found in the Materials and Resources (MR) division and the Indoor Environmental Quality division (EQ). These two sections are the primary applicable areas of research. The construction company is able to make decisions in these two sections. The other sectors are heavily dependent upon th e architect and owners decisions. MR Credit 2.1 & 2.2 Construction Waste Mana gement demand a certain percentage of waste is diverted from disposal The Construction Waste Manage ment Plan diverts 50% or 75% of waste depending on the attempted credit. The intent of these credits is to divert construction, demolition, and land clearing debris from dispos al in landfills and incinerators. Redirect recyclable recovered resources back to the manufact uring process. Redirect reusable materials to appropriate sites (USGBC 2005). Credit 2.1 requ ires 50% waste diversion whereas Credit 2.2 increases the amount of waste diversion to 75%. The goals of MR Credit 2.1 and 2.2 are to recycle and/or salvage at non-hazardous constr uction and demolition debris. The company must develop and implement a construction waste manage ment plan that, at a minimum, identifies the materials to be diverted from disposal and whether the materials will be sorted onsite or commingled. Excavated soil and land-clearing debris do not contribu te to this credit. Calculations can be done by weight or volum e, but must be consistent throughout (USGBC 2005). MR Credit 4.1 Recycled C ontent: 10% and MR Credit 4.2 Recycled Content: 20% are credits that specify a particular amount of c onstruction materials must be made of recycled materials. The intent of the Recycled Content Credit is to reduce the demand for extraction and processing of virgin materials by using materials that are made of recycled content. This credit reduces the amount of energy used to extract ra w materials and the impact made on the natural

PAGE 35

35 environment. The LEED credits must meet th e recycled content requirements set by the International Standards Organi zation Document, ISO 14021. The cont ractor has the ability to select specified materials that have a high r ecycled content unless sp ecified otherwise by the architect. The requirements of credit MR Credit 4.1 are to use materials with recycled content such that the sum of post-consumer recycled c ontent plus one half of the preconsumer content constitutes at least 10% based on cost of the tota l value of the materials in the project (USGBC 2005). The recycled content value of a material assembly shall be determined by weight. The recycled fraction of the assembly is then multiplied by the cost of assembly to determine the recycled content value. Mechanical, electrical and plumbing components and specialty items such as elevators shall not be included in this calculation. Only include materials permanently installed (USGBC 2005). MR Credit 5.1 Regional Materials: 10% a nd MR Credit 5.2 Regional Materials: 20% are LEED points that specify an amount of materials that must be extracted, processed, and manufactured regionally. The LEED credits limit the distance materials are extracted, processed, and manufactured from the construction site. The purpose of the credits is to reduce the amount of carbon dioxide produced by tr ansportation. The requirements set by the credit are building materials or products must be ex tracted, processed, and manufactur ed within five hundred miles of the job site for a minimum of 10% to 20% of the total material cost. The calculation does not include mechanical, electrical, or plumbing components. MR Credit 7: Certified Wood offers one point to encourage sustainable wood harvesting practices. Fifty percent of all wood based materi als used on the project must be certified in accordance with the Forest Stewardship Council Pr inciples for Certified Wood. All wood that is permanently placed on site must be included in the calculation.

PAGE 36

36 EQ Credit 3.1. Construction Indoor Air Quality Ma nagement Plan is a credit that establishes an Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) manage ment plan for the construction phase of the building. This credits purpose is to reduce indoor air quality problems resulting from the construction/renovation process in order to help sustain th e comfort and well being of construction workers and building occupants (U SGBC 2005). The credit requires that an IAQ plan must be established for the construc tion phase of the building that includes during construction meet or exceed the recomm ended Control Measures of the Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning National Contractors A ssociation (SMACNA) IAQ Guidelines for Occupied Buildings under Construction, 1995, Chapter 3 (USGBC 2005); protect stored on-site or installed absorptive materials from moisture damage (USGBC 2005); if permanently installed air ha ndlers are used during construc tion, filtration media with a Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV) of 8 shall be used at each return air grille, as determined by ASHRAE 52.2-1999. Replace all filtration media immediately prior to occupancy (USGBC 2005). EQ Credit 3.2. Construction IAQ Management Plan improves the indoor air quality for building occupants by developing an IAQ management plan for preoccupancy of the building. Credit 3.2 offers two different options. Option 1 is to flush out the entire building and option 2 is to perform IAQ testing on the building. Both of the requirements ensure the required indoor air quality credits are met through LEED. 2.3.2.5 Green Globes The Green Globes Organization also certifies buildings built by construction companies. The difference between the LEED Certification a nd the Green Globes Certif ication is the latter focuses on an integrated design process includi ng the owner, architect, and contractor into a functioning unit. Though similar to the LEED Certification, the construction company has limited decision making capabilities. The Green Globes Certification is heavily dependent upon the architect.

PAGE 37

37 2.3.2.6 Eco-Management and Audit Scheme Eco-Management and Audit Scheme (EMAS) is a European organization that has developed documents that address the construc tion industry, under the topi c of organizations controlling temporary sites. Th e applicant organization must provide evidence that it has adopted procedures and technologie s, suitable to the specific site s in which it has to temporarily operate to be a member of EMAS. Where applicab le, these procedures shoul d include at least the following items (EMAS 2001): appropriate technology a nd training (EMAS 2001) proper environmental analysis of the sites pr ior to the start of the activity (EMAS 2001) analysis of the environmental consequences out coming from future planned activities (EMAS 2001) communication to the public living in the area and to the local aut horities concerning the relevant environmental aspects associated to the working plan, and the related identified solutions (EMAS 2001) formulation of recovering plans or so lutions for improving the involved areas environmental conditions at the end of the operations (EMAS 2001) Temporary sites will be observed by spot check ing the organizations site and obtaining the information needed to ensure the site is in the proper condition. EMAS will ensure the company is operating properly through the spot ch eck technique. Random checks are part of the verification process. EMAS regist ers the activities of the company, not just the selected site location. EMAS created rules for the applicant company that addresses the procedures the company must perform to be ce rtified by EMAS. The list of the procedures is a set of the primary stages of EMAS. Registration of an orga nization must comply with the following steps: Conduct an environmental review consider ing all environmental aspects of the organizations activities, produc ts and services, methods to assess these, its legal and regulatory framework and existing environmen tal management practices and procedures (EMAS 1995).

PAGE 38

38 In the light of the results of the review, establish an eff ective environmental management system aimed at achieving the organizatio ns environmental policy defined by the top management. The management system needs to set responsibilities, objectives, means, operational procedures, training needs, m onitoring and communication systems (EMAS 1995). Carry out an environmental audit assessing in particular the management system in place and conformity with the organizations polic y and programme as well as compliance with relevant environmental regulat ory requirements (EMAS 1995). Provide a statement of its environmental performance which lays down the results achieved against the environmental objectives and the future steps to be undertaken in order to continuously improve the organi zations environmental performance (EMAS 1995). 2.4 Sustainable Development Sustainable development is a fairly new topic th at has grown to be very popular in the turn of this century. The recent concern of gree nhouse gases and increased attention to the environment has helped to make the term sust ainable development a household term. Sustainable development is defined as development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future ge nerations to meet their own needs (World Commission on Environment and Development 1987). The social economic, and environmental aspects of sustainable development help to identify current and future goals of improvement for our world. 2.4.1 Laws, Standards, Documents, Conferences and Certifications on Sustainable Development There have been many documents produced to help advance sustainable development. The United Nations has created many documents on sust ainable development to set goals for future government policies since the 1970s. Sustainable development documents encompass all three topics previously addressed in the literature review. Sustainable development documents have been created throughout the past 35 years by different organizations, companies, and governments to increase awareness and advance sustainable development.

PAGE 39

39 2.4.1.1 Stockholm Conference The Stockholm Conference was established by the United Nati ons in 1972. The Stockholm Conference was the first conference to address the impacts made by humans on the environment. The conference established a long term strategy to achieve the goal of sustainable development. The Stockholm Conference goals we re to inform and positively affect the future of the world. The conference recognized the link between the environment and humans and the important role humans play in the protec tion of the environment. 2.4.1.2 World Commission on Environment and De velopment, International Conference on Environment and Economics, and the Brundtland Report The term sustainable development was de fined in the Brundtland Report published in 1987. Sustainable development is development th at meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future ge nerations to meet their own needs (World Commission on Environment and Development 1987). The term spurred from the World Commission on Environment and Development, also know n as the Brundtland Commission. The 1983 conference helped to develop stra tegies to achieve sustainable development. The International Conference on Environment and Economics help ed to develop the Brundtland Report. The Brundtland Report addresses the im portance of nations to be i ndependent and environmentally responsible. The Brundtland Report received its na me in dedication to the former Norwegian Prime Minster, Harlem Brundtland. Mrs. Brundtland acted as the chair of the World Commission on Environment and Development and was a majo r contributor the Brund tland report. The World Commission on Environment and Development, International Conferen ce on Environment and Economics, and the Brundtland Report paved the way for the Earth Summit and the adoption of Agenda 21.

PAGE 40

40 2.4.1.3 Agenda 21 and World Summit on Sustainable Development Agenda 21 is the United Nations global bl ueprint for sustainable development. The creation of Agenda 21 took place in Rio de Ja neiro, Brazil in 1992 and was updated by the World Summit of Sustainable Development in Johannesburg, South Africa in 2002. The United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affa irs, Division of Sustainable Development, created both documents. Agenda 21 was develope d for governmental advances in sustainable development. The agenda is not a prescriptive document for companies; it sets the goals for sustainable development of the entire world. The Agenda 21 gave insight into sustainable development and the procedures that need to be taken to become sustainable. Agenda 21 is divided into four major secti ons. The first section of Agenda 21 addresses social and economic dimensions. Section two covers conservation and management of resource development. The Strengthening the Role of Ma jor Groups section is explored in the third segment. The Implementation of the Agenda 21 is composed in section four. From the four categories each section is broken down into chapters. Each chapter is made up of multiple four paragraph programs. The programs are composed of the basis for action, th e objective, activities, and cost of implementation. Much of the informa tion included in the Agenda 21 is not applicable to the construction industry. The Agenda 21 is studie d to gain insight into applicable guidelines for the development of a sustaina ble construction certification. The social and economic section includes app licable information for the development of the certification system. The secti on is divided into eight chapters each covering a specific topic, addressed by the United Nations. Not all of the chapters are essential for the research. The information that pertains to an applicable topi c is explored. Paragraph 2.5 expands on the need to create a nondiscriminatory and predictabl e trading system. Through developing a fair, nondiscriminatory trade, developing countries will have the ability to grow and positively affect

PAGE 41

41 the environment. The fourth chapter of Agenda 21 contains information on current consumption patterns and identifies areas of improvement for nonsustainable habits. Special attention should be paid to the demand for natural resources ge nerated by unsustainable consumption and to the efficient use of those resources consistent wi th the goal of minimizing depletion and reducing pollution. Changing consumption patterns will require a multipronged strategy focusing on demand, meeting the basic needs of the poor, an d reducing wastage and the use of finite resources in the production process (United Nati ons 2005). Efficient production processes must be developed and waste producti on must be decreased to be sustainable. Paragraph 4.18 addresses the need for increased operating effici ency. The paragraph encourages the reduction of energy and materials per unit of pr oduction. If current pr actices become more efficient, material amounts reduce and energy costs subside, saving the applicator money. Paragraph 5.11states awareness should be increased at all levels concerning the need to optimize the sustainable use of resources through efficient resource management, taking into account the development needs of the populations of developing countries. Agenda 21 addresses the primary needs of the worlds population in Chapter 6, protecting human health. Speci al attention is paid to the health needs of the elderly and disabled populati on. Sub-Chapter E, Reducing Health Risk from Environmental Pollution and Hazards, is an important topic that affects the constructi on industry. Indoor air pollution, water pollution, pesticides and solid waste are topics that reduce health risk. The Agenda 21 focuses on governmental tasks that in clude the development of programs and control technologies. The second section of the Agenda 21 is cons ervation and management of resources for development. The second major section is dissected into fourteen chapters. The first chapter is Protection of the Atmosphere. This chapter in cludes four program areas. The program areas

PAGE 42

42 address uncertainties, promoting sustainable development, preventing ozone depletion, and atmospheric pollution. Paragraph 9.11 states, th e basic and ultimate objective of promoting sustainable development in the second program area is to reduce adverse effects on the atmosphere from the energy sector by promoting policies or programs, as appropriate, to increase the contribution of environmentally sound and cost effective energy systems, particularly new and renewable ones, through less polluting and mo re efficient energy pr oduction, transmission, distribution and use (United Nations 2005). The sustainable development program includes objectives to identify and promote the use of economically viable and environmentally sound energy sources. The second chapter beneath the promoting sust ainable development topic is transportation. The basic objective of sustainabl e transportation is to develop a nd promote cost effective policies or programs to reduce the amount of harmful emissions. The th ird focal point of promoting sustainable development is indu strial development. The purpose of the topic is to reduce materials and resource consumption by using environmentally friendly technologies in the industrial sector. Program C, Pr eventing stratospheric ozone depl etion focus on the elimination of man made CFC, halons, and similar substanc es through the ratification of the 1990 Montreal Protocol. The fourth program is transboundry atmospheric pollution. The goal for the fourth section is to develop and appl y pollution control and measuremen t technologies for stationary and mobile sources of air pollution and to develop alternative environmentally sound technologies (United Nations 2005). The goal of th e ninth chapter is to reduce air pollution and give insight to applicable step s to create a sustainable enviro nment. Chapter 19 of Agenda 21 addresses environmentally responsible management of toxic chemicals. The topic is divided into six program areas. The fourth program area es tablishes a risk reduction program for the

PAGE 43

43 management of toxic chemicals. The concept is to eliminate unacceptable or unreasonable risks and, to the extent economically feasible, to re duce risks posed by toxic chemicals, by employing a broad based approach involvi ng a wide range of risk re duction options and by taking precautionary measures derived from a broad ba sed life cycle analysis (United Nations 2005). Paragraph 19.50 establishes guidanc e for industry use of toxic chem icals. The agenda identifies the importance of establishing a code of principles for the use of toxic chemicals that involve a responsible use approach base d on alternative materials replacing toxic chemicals. In section three, stre ngthening the role of major groups, the implementation of sustainable development practices into real world applicatio ns is explored. Section three acknowledges the imperative involvement of women, children, non governmental organizations, and workers in sustainable development. Promo ting cleaner production is an obj ective set out by Agenda 21. All companies should increase efficiency of resour ces, increase reuse and recycling, and reduce the amount of waste discharge per unit output. The agenda holds companies accountable for their energy use, companies should practice annual re ports on their environmen tal impact, including material and resource use. Agenda 21 is not a prescriptive document for companies, but a body of work that identifies areas of importance th at must be addressed to create a sustainable environment. Agenda 21 is the United Nations global blue print for sustainable development. Agenda 21 was updated by the World Summit for Sustaina ble Development to further progress the implementation of sustainable development. Th e WSSD formed two documents created by the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Division of Sustainable Development. The two documents are th e Johannesburg Declaration on Sustainable

PAGE 44

44 Development and the Johannesburg Plan of Im plementation. The other primary goal of the international conference was to de velop a plan to further implement the Agenda 21 document. 2.4.1.4 Global Environmental Management Initiative The Global Environmental Management Initiative (GEMI) is a not for profit organization designed to aid in the advance of sustainable development. Th e organization was created in 1990 and has developed many different documents e xploring and advancing areas of sustainable development. The GEMI motto is businesses helping business. Many documents have been produced by the GEMI to enable businesses to evaluate themselves. The GEMI has designed and developed tools to advance the cu rrent status of sustainable de velopment. The GEMI is not a third party certification and does not require that any particular st andard must be met. The GEMI acknowledges the three primary facets of su stainable development and has created many different document addressing different topics in each of these three categories. The vision of the GEMI is to be globally recognized as a leader in providing strate gies for businesses to achieve environmental, health and safety (EHS) excelle nce, economic success and corporate citizenship (GEMI 2005). The GEMI has developed tools to enable the easy application of sustainable practices in an industry. The GEMI is not a certification based organization, but a company that produces documents and advice to adva nce sustainable development. 2.4.1.5 International Institute fo r Sustainable Development The IISD is a not for profit policy research institute formed in 1990. The Canadian based organization works with governments, business, and non governmental or ganizations to form environmental and social policies. Many valuab le documents are made public through the IISD website. National Strategies for Sustainabl e Development: Challenges, Approaches and Innovations in Strategic and C oordinated Action is a document developed and published by the IISD. The documents goal is to progress su stainable development through implementing

PAGE 45

45 sustainable practices into industries and gove rnments. Each document created by the IISD addresses a particular topic to advance sustainable development. 2.4.1.6 World Business Council for Sustainable Development The World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) is a world wide organization made up of large cor porations dedicated to sustaina ble development. After the Rio de Janeiro Earth Summit in 1992, the Business Council for Sustainable Development was formed. The WBCSD was created in 1995 in a me rger of the Business Council for Sustainable Development and the World Industry Council for th e Environment. The focus of the WBCSD is to gain and share knowledge about eco-efficien cy and sustainable development. The executive committee decides the members of the organizati on by evaluating their dedication to sustainable development. The election for membership is vague and undefi ned. Companies share information about their environmental performance and advice on their improvements. The WBCSD works with governments and non governmental organizations to encourage sustainable development. The WBCSD divides their information into four areas of focus. The areas of focus are energy and climate, development, busines s role, and ecosystems. The WBCSD has many published papers, each identifying an ar ea of sustainable development. 2.4.2 Sustainable Reporting The concept of sustainable reporting is ne w concept that addresses the three primary aspects of sustainability. The concept of sustai nable reporting addresse s the social, economic, and environmental performance of a company. Shareholders, employees, customers, and the public use these sustainabl e reports to evaluate th e performance of corpora tions. Proper reporting practices for sustainable development have been identified and described by different organizations to help promote sustainable pract ices. Current standard reporting practices only address the economic aspect. Sust ainable reporting identifies a companys performance in all

PAGE 46

46 three sectors through the use of performance indicators. Performance indicators enable companies to directly compare a performance to another companys performance or their prior performance. The reports establis h these methods of measuring perf ormance in all three areas of sustainability. The sustainable reports help to id entify the companys deficiencies and areas of improvement. Topics formed underneath the thre e pronged framework are addressed to properly complete a triple bottom line report. The term triple bottom line describes an accounting principle that accounts for the im pact of the social, economic and environmental performance of a company. Triple bottom line repo rt measures the sustainability of a company. Sustainable reporting identifies a companys performance and im pact in the three areas of sustainability instead of the current practice which only focuses on economic performance. 2.4.2.1 Global Reporting Initiative, G3 The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) is a r ecent addition to the sustainable reporting organization realm. The GRI came into developm ent to enable accurate and proper sustainable reporting. The GRI was originated from a not for profit sustainable reporting project. In 2000 the GRI released its first set of sustainability re porting guidelines. The guidelines for sustainable reporting form a reporting framework for all companies, large and small, to follow. The reporting framework of the GRI is composed of the reporting guidelines, sector supplements and indicator protocols. Since 2000, companies have b een using the GRI format to release reports based on the prescribed reporting guidelines. In 2006 the GRI released the G3, the primary reporting document of the GRI. The G3 guidelin es outline topics th at are important to sustainable reporting. The guideli nes address many different topi cs all contained within the sustainable framework and rate the companies by established performan ce indicators. The goal of the GRI is to have reports on social, economic, and environmental performance by all companies in all sectors. The reporting is simila r to the currently practic ed standard accounting

PAGE 47

47 principles, except the report informs and notifies the company on their perf ormance in all three of the sustainable categories. 2.4.2.2 AccountAbility, AA1000 Assurance Standard The Institute for Social and Ethical A ccountAbility (ISEA) was created in 1996. The purpose of the Institute was to develop and measur e reporting methods that will accurately and properly define a companys performance. The AA1000 framework was developed in 1999. The goal of the AA1000 was to help progress sustaina ble development through the learning process of ethical accounting. The AA1000 Assurance Sta ndard (AS) was the next document produced by AccountAbility. The Assurance Standard wa s released in 2003. The AA1000 AS ensures consistent sustainable reporting to hold comp anies accountable. AccountAbility released the AA1000 AS to ensure proper reporting of su stainable performance. The AA1000 is not a certifiable standard rather a generally applicable standard for assessing, attesting to, and strengthening the credibility a nd quality of organizations sust ainability reporting (ISEA 2003). The AA1000 is a web based interactive standa rd. The AA1000 AS is intended to encourage innovation around key quality princi ples, which at this stage; it considers a more effective approach in moving forward indi vidual adopting organizations a nd the field as a whole (ISEA 1999). The AA1000 gives a set of guidelines for proper sustainability reporting. AA1000 is an AccountAbility standard focused on securing the quality of social and ethical accounting, auditing, and reporting. It is co mprised of principles and process standards (ISEA 1999). The sustainable reporting standard evaluates the credibility of published reports. The AccountAbility defines the process of reporting for the AA1000 AS as a process standard, not a substantive performance standard It specifies processe s that an organization should follow to account for its performance and not the levels of performance the organization should achieve (ISEA 1999). The process of social and ethical accounting be gins with a planning

PAGE 48

48 process that defines a company s obligations, objectives, and targ ets. The second step is to account for the defined information. Data must be gathered to properly identify targets and improvement plans. The third step for proper accoun ting is to have the completed report audited to confirm the reports legitimacy. The report must be made accessible to shareholders to gain applicable feedback. The proce ss will then be refined to prod uce a tailored document that is integrated into the companys standards. 2.5 Summary The literature review explored the social, economic, and environmental dimensions of sustainable development. The research identified specific areas of sustainable development that need improvement. These specific areas of im provement were explored through the three primary aspects of sustainability. The research examined the history, goals, and concepts of sustainable development in an attempt to design a framework to evaluate construction companies.

PAGE 49

49 CHAPTER 3 METHODOLOGY The objective of the research is to create a comprehensive sust ainable construction specific certification. The collection of doc uments pertaining to the three primary aspects of sustainable development provided ample information for th e development to the Social, Economic, and Environmental (SEE) Evaluation. Documents, certif ications, standards, and laws pertaining to the three aspects of sustainable development were observed through current American history. The gathered information determined specific areas of focus and developed the policies to which the areas of focus must be upheld. The informati on has been sorted by its relation to sustainable development and organized by da te and significance. Previous and current documents give informative insight into the deve lopment of the SEE Evaluation. 3.1 SEE Evaluation Design The framework of the SEE Evaluation began by researching previous sustainable standards applicable to the construction i ndustry. The evaluation acknowledges the goals and intent of each document, then applies the documents goals to the construction industry standards and practices. The current inefficiencies of the constructi on industry are addressed by the researched documents. The framework of the evaluation exam ined current construction industry practices and explored possible areas of improvement in the social, economic, and environmental realms. The areas of improvement are addressed in the policies of the SEE Evaluation. 3.1.1 Social Development The social research began with American labo r laws. Labor laws are the initial documents that address social rights of American empl oyees. These American laws are the basis of American social standards and helped develop corporate soci al responsibility. Construction companies must currently operate and perform by the seven laws st udied in the lit erature review.

PAGE 50

50 Leading companies social documents are explored to gain insight into the forefront of current corporate social polices in America. Starbucks a nd Toshibas current polices are observed to help define the baseline social performance of the SEE Evaluation. These current laws and documents identify the expected performance of the constr uction industry. The eval uations goal is to advance and improve the current condition of so cial performance through creating policies that the applicant company must operate by. 3.1.2 Economic Development Economic development has naturally occurred though American history. Economic development is typically based on the mone tary performance of a company. Economic development has been the primary performance c oncern to American companies. The social and environmental aspects of sustainability have b een neglected caused by the concern of economic performance. Stockholders cont rol the current economic operati on practices of their company. The SEE Evaluation frameworks pr imary focus in the economic section is to maintain corporate practices that are expected from the leading American companies. The requirement for the company to perform transparently is the prim ary concern of the SEE Evaluation process. 3.1.3 Environmental Development Environmental performance in the construction industry will be improved by the SEE Evaluation process. The research began with Amer ican laws that were created to protect the environment. The history of environmental pr otection is followed through the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The defined environmen tal protection laws are identified and carried over in to the framework of the evaluation. Certifications for the construction product inform the SEE Evaluation by approaching sustainable deve lopment from a different aspect. Current construction certifications focus on the construc tion product and neglect construction processes and policies. These certifications are drastica lly different than the SEE Evaluation but are

PAGE 51

51 beneficial to the development of the evaluations framework. Th e Leadership in Environment Efficient Design (LEED) New Construction 2.2 iden tifies specific areas of improvement that make construction companies operate more effi cient. The designed framework has areas of improvement that directly overlap with constr uction product certifications. The environmental section of the framework is desi gned by the exploration of previ ous developed standards, laws, and documents to improve the perfor mance of the construction industry. 3.2 Method of Investigation A formal investigation was performed on curren t and previous laws pertaining to social, economic, and environmental standards, laws and certifications. The three aspects of sustainability were divided and explored independently. The rese arch examined the history of each different aspect of sustainability from its inception into American history. The gathered information provided the groundwork for the cons truction certification policies. Studying the different documents gave an understanding of the different realms of sustainable development and the changes that must occur to reach the goal of sustainable deve lopment. The framework was created by observing previously published docu ments and identified their relationship to the construction industry.

PAGE 52

52 CHAPTER 4 THE SEE EVALUATION The SEE Evaluation is an impar tial sustainable third party cer tification system designed to evaluate construction companies. Previous laws, standards, and certifications were examined to obtain insight into the development of the SEE Evaluation. The SEE Evaluation measures various aspects of a company, not the buildings that they might construct. The evaluation has been specifically tailored to address specific deficiencies in the construction industry. The defined policies equally evaluate small, medi um, and large constructi on companies. It is imperative to the success of the SEE Evaluation that the developed policies be clear, concise, and understandable. The policies must establish exac tly what is required from the company. Figure 4-1 is an outlined preview of the SEE Evaluation policy framework. The certification is divided into three divisions: social, econo mic, and environmental. Each division is composed of specific s ections that include prerequisite s and topic points. Each section describes a general area of the construction industry th at needs to be addr essed. Every policy is divided into two paragraphs identifying the purpo se and policy terms. The company must adhere to the prerequisites to be cer tified by the SEE Evaluation. The policy points are optional points that companies may or may not choose to obtain. The applicant company must attain a sufficient amount of points to obtain a sp ecified level of certif ication. The more point attained the higher the level of certification. The evaluation gives pr escriptive measures and sets requirements that must be met instead of setting goals that do not require conformance. The applicant company must comply with the selected SEE Evaluati on policies but is not limited by them. Additional information can be created by the applicant comp any and is encouraged as long as it does not conflict with any central goals of the evaluations prerequisites, selected policies, and laws. The applicant companies may or may not currently pr actice the defined policies. The evaluation only

PAGE 53

53 requires that the applicant comply with all prereq uisites and selected points if they are to be certified by the SEE Evaluation. 4.1 Company Statement The goal of the SEE Evaluation is to make the construction industry as sustainable as possible. The path to sustainability is a path of trial and error, attempting to effectively alter the way business is currently conducted. It is impor tant to share knowledge with one another about innovative ideas and concepts that further the movement towards sustainable development. 4.1.1 Company Reporting It is important for a company to report its perf ormance in all three aspects of sustainability. The applicant company must adopt the Global Reporting Initiatives (GRI) G3 reporting policy to indicate its performance and ensure it is perfor ming to the best of its capabilities. The G3 will enable companies to identify defi ciencies and areas of improvem ent through the use of the G3s established performance indicato rs. The SEE Evaluation uses the G3 report to monitor certified companies performance to ensure conformance to the applicable polices. 4.1.2 Company Communication Construction companies need to share and publ icize their successes and failures to help other companies make proper and informed decisions. An online forum will allow companies to post their failures and successes. It is important that informati on be shared. Innovative concepts that help companies obtain points or help to further their social, economic, and environmental responsibility should be posted. Companies should not retain information that could be utilized by other companies to support unethical motiv es. The postings should be accessible to all construction companies for examination. Postings could include information on sustainable ideas or information on an environmentally friendly supp lier. Any information considered beneficial to sustainable development should be shared in postings. The shared information forms an

PAGE 54

54 interconnected network of socially, economicall y, and environmentally responsible construction companies attempting to improve sustainable development. 4.1.3 Company Advances Leaders of the construction industry adopt ne w technologies that help them to operate more efficiently. It is important these technologies be adopted by certified companies. The use of building information modeling is an example of rewarding company advancement. The use of technology is continually increa sing and advancing the construc tion industry. Companies that adopt and evolve new technologies enable them to operate more e fficiently. This subsequently is beneficial to the environment. A company that adopts and embraces ne w technologies is given an advantage over those companies that are resi stant to change. The SEE Evaluation encourages technological advances and use of technology to enhance efficiency. 4.2 SEE Evaluation, Social Division The Social Division of the framework expl ores the relationship of the construction company with its employees. The framework defines the companys manner of operations, observing equality and fairness in every aspect. The roles and responsibi lities of the employee, employer, subcontractor, client, and community ar e the relationships identified and investigated in the Social Division of the SEE Evaluation. Th e evaluation observes the companys operations and sets polices by which employees must opera te. The social segment of the certification evaluates factors of human equal ity and rights of individuals. The Social Division of the SEE Evaluations goal is to create a proper and fair construction indus try where employees, companies, clients, and communities will obt ain a mutually beneficial relationship. To ensure the satisfaction of all individuals, satisfaction surveys will be distributed biannually. The biannual satisfaction survey will help to quantify the social performance of the company. Performance indicators for the social as pect of the evaluation are very difficult to

PAGE 55

55 define and quantify. Each human defines satisfa ction and happiness differently. The evaluation will attempt to effectively create policies that foster a healthy productive social environment. 4.2.1 Employees Obligations to the Company The Employees Obligation to the Company s ection explores employees responsibilities and obligations to the employer construction company. It is an e ssential condition of employment that each employee represents their em ployer to the best of their ability at all times. There must be a mutually beneficial relati onship formed between the employee and employer during employment. The framework of the certifi cation sets social polic es by which employees of the certified company must abide. Key requi rements set by the SEE Evaluation are defined by policies. 4.2.1.1 Ethical Business Conduct Guidelines 1.1.1 (prerequisite) Ethical decisions are constantly made duri ng the daily operation of a company and each employee is held responsible for his or her deci sions. Each employee is held to the highest standards of integrity. A set of f undamental values are set that wi ll help guide employees through the ethical decision making process. The comp any benefits from the Ethical Business Conduct Guidelines by establishing what is expected of all employees. In this way, expectations of the individual will be standardized. Every individu al will be operating with the same understanding of what is expected of them. This effect crea tes a positive, unified construction company with direction and common goals. Purpose. The Ethical Business Conduct Guidelin es establish standards by which all employees should operate. Employees are held to the highest of standards and expected to operate by the established code of ethics in the SEE Evaluation. If employees choose not to follow the rules established by the guidelines, it is grounds for termination of employment. Harassment is an example issue that is addres sed in the Ethical Business Conduct Guidelines.

PAGE 56

56 Harassment is a current and ongoing problem in the construction industry and can create a negative effect on the companys atmosphere. Ha rassment can directly effect production and can be the source of many negative bus iness issues in the constructi on industry. The Ethical Business Conduct Guidelines address these is sues and set a tone for what is expected from the employees. The purpose of the ethical business conduct guidelines is to ensure that employees act in the proper ethical manner which is pr escribed in the policy terms. Policy terms. The applicant company must adopt th e Ethical Business Conduct Guidelines defined by the SEE Evaluation. Employees must acknowledge their obliga tion to the company through reading and signing the Ethical Busine ss Conduct Guidelines. The companys ethical business conduct guidelines may include addition al information, tailored to the company. The supplementary information added to the ethical bu siness conduct guidelines must not interfere or conflict with the core polic ies set by the SEE Evaluation. The Ethical Business Conduct Guidelines must be carefully read, acknowledge d, signed, and abided by all employees of the company. The core ethical busine ss conduct guidelines are as follows: All employees must be honest in all dealings with their company of employment and its operations. All employees must operate with integrity while interacting with their company of employment. All employees must not place themselves or others in harms way. All employees must respect and care for the environment. All employees must keep personal life and work separate. All employees must respect the identities of all individuals. 4.2.1.2 Substance Abuse Policy 1.1.2 (prerequisite) A safe and healthy working environment is on e of the most important aspects that are controlled by the construction company. There are no excuses for any type of substance abuse by

PAGE 57

57 any employee. Without impaired judgment, the construction industry is a dangerous industry. The use of a controlled substance or alcohol pl aces others at risk and cannot be tolerated. Purpose. The Substance Abuse Policy helps to ma intain a safe, efficient, and healthy working environment. Employees who abuse an y substance put others in harms way. Participating in any jobsite activities while unde r the influence of drugs or alcohol poses a serious risk to jobsite safety and will not be tolerated. Policy terms. There is no tolerance for substance abuse and precautions must be taken to avoid this mistake. The Substance Abuse Policy explicitly lists the rules that the certified company must abide by. All employees must not be impaired through us e of drug, alcohol, or a ny illegal substances at any time during employment. All employees will be drug tested pre-employment with the company. All employees are subjugated to rand om drug testing on a regular basis. All associated employees will be post accident drug tested. 4.2.2 Company Obligations to Employees It is essential that the applicant companies create a healthy and safe working environment for all employees and comply with all federal and state employment laws. Social obligations go beyond abiding by current laws. The SEE Evaluation establishes a set of social policies that identify the obligations of th e employer to the employee. 4.2.2.1 Safety Policy 1.2.1 (prerequisite) The SEE Evaluation framework is committed to creating a safe working environment for all employees. The safety of employees is esse ntial for the success of a construction company. A list of safety requirements that must be met to be considered for certific ation has been developed. The Safety Policy is a prerequisite of the SEE Evaluation that must be met to be certified.

PAGE 58

58 Purpose. Construction is the most dangerous indus try outside of fishing in the United States. Employees, as companys most important a sset, should be provided a safe work place and be given the opportunity to become knowledgeable about safety issues. Falls, electrocutions, vehicle rollovers, personnel run over by vehicles and excavation cave-ins are the five leading causes of death in construction. It is important for employees to be knowledgeable about these unsafe situations and the need to protect themselves from these dangers. It is imperative that a safe working environment be provided for all employees in the construction industry. Safety in the construction i ndustry is already an important concern of many construction companies. Good safety practices produce low experience modification ratings. Safe construction companies have lower safety experi ence modification ratings due to their dedication to creating safe environments for their employees The less recordable injuries, lost time, and deaths, the lower the construction companys Experience Modification Rating (EMR) is. The lower the EMR, the more money the construction company saves. Jobsite specific safety analysis is anothe r subcategory addressed in the SEE Evaluation framework. The jobsite specific safety analysis is a process that analyzes and develops site specific safety plans that address specific issues of concern on particul ar sites. The analysis enables all on-site workers to be aware of sp ecific safety concerns and conduct safe working practices. The analysis directly deals with situations and ta sks that will be performed on a specific construction site. All employees and su bcontractors should be aware of the jobsite specific safety plan and should receive adequate instruction on the implementation of the plan. The subcontractor plays a signi ficant role in creating a sa fe jobsite. If a construction company exercises extreme safety practices but negl ects to address the issue of safety with the subcontractors, the jobsite is not necessarily safe. Therefore, subc ontractor safety is as much a

PAGE 59

59 part of the SEE Evaluation as contractor sa fety. The policy terms explicitly state the specifications for subcontractors. The SEE Evaluation is committe d to providing a safe workpl ace in every aspect of the construction industry. Criminal background chec ks are required for all employees before employment with a SEE certified company. Infrac tions of the law may eliminate the opportunity for future employment with the company de pending on the severity of the infraction. Policy terms. The safety of all workers should be of the utmost importance to any company. The safety policies must be abided by construction companies to ensure certification. Applicant companies that do not abide by this policy are not eligible for certification. The construction companys safety pol icy must contain and abide by the prescribed SEE Evaluation Safety Policy. The construction companys safety policy must be compliant with the following information but is not limited to this information: All construction sites must be OSHA compliant. OSHA compliance officers must always be granted access to all construction sites. All employees must be ten hour OSHA certified. A jobsite specific safety plan must be devel oped for every project th at the company builds. Subcontractors with a safety experience modifi cation rate greater than 0.95 cannot be hired by the contractor. Pre-employment criminal background checks are required for all employees. 4.2.2.2 Employment Policy 1.2.2 (prerequisite) The Employment Policy is a prerequisite that directly deals with the relationship between employer and employee. The Employment Polic y contains many different areas of focus pertaining to the employees qua lity of life. The Employment Policy addresses affirmative action, illegal labor, wages, harassment, and overtime.

PAGE 60

60 Purpose. The proper treatment of employees is es sential for sustainable development to occur; therefore employment conditions and employ ee rights are an important social aspect of the framework. The construction industry is kno wn for its harsh working conditions and unfair treatment of employees. The Employment Policy a ddresses concerns of employees and develops suitable standards for employees. Fair employme nt practices in the c onstruction industry are emphasized in the SEE Evaluation. The evalua tion examines and acknowledges particular negative social aspects of the construction industry and their need for improvement. The construction industry is one of the largest employers of short-term illegal workers. An estimated 1.4 million unauthorized workers are employed in the construction industry. This accounts for about 12% of the construction work force. Many construction companies employ undocumented workers. Many undocumented employ ees are paid below minimum wages and face harsh and unfair labor conditions. The use of illegal labor is prohibited in the SEE Evaluation. The Affirmative Action subpolicy addresses issu es that arise out of discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex, age, religion, national origin, disability, or ve teran status. Construction companies must be equal opportunity employers in all phases of employment. Companies have an ethical and legal obliga tion to provide a work envi ronment in which employment opportunities are open to a ll qualified individuals without discrimination. These standards must be maintained throughout al l stages of employment. All employees must be paid fair labor rates that match or exceed industry standards. Fair labor wages ensure employees will be able to provide for themselves and their dependents to create a sustainable development. The living wage policy requires employers to pay wages that equal or are higher than the st ate and federal minimum wage. Th e living wage policy establishes

PAGE 61

61 a specified percent of workers that must be paid at a rate that places th em over the poverty line. Living wages help to distribute wealth among the less fortunate and develop the surrounding community. Policy terms. The Employment Policy is a prerequi site of the framework. The policy defines guidelines for the company of employment. The policy sets the living wage rates equal to 130% of the poverty line. The poverty line must be updated and established each year of certification. The policy terms the employer must abide by are will abide by all state and federal requirements; may not use illegal la bor of any kind; will not discriminate on the basis of race, color, sex, age, religion, national origin, disability, or veteran status; will establish living wage rates for all employees equal to 130% above the poverty line updated and established each year. 4.2.2.3 Health Insurance Policy, Health y Living Program 1.2.3 (20 points) The SEE Evaluation Health Insurance Policy pr omotes a healthy lifestyle for sustainable development. The program rewards employees for their health performance. The 20 point policy establishes guidelines for a health insurance program to promote healthy living habits. The Healthy Living Program enables the employee to have the ability to decide on the amount of insurance coverage received through lifestyle practices. Purpose. The purpose of the Health Insurance Policy is to promote healthy behavior for all employees in the company. Many current constr uction companies insurance policies do not influence employees to be heal thy. The SEE Evaluation Health In surance Policy is designed to promote a healthy lifestyle for employees. The healthier the employees are, the more the employees are rewarded. Figure 4-2 explains th e Healthy Living Program in extensive detail.

PAGE 62

62 Policy terms. The insurance program promotes the health of its employee by increasing the amount of insurance covered by the cons truction company. A set of subpolicies are established by the Healthy Living Program. An em ployees insurance can range from complete coverage to no coverage through the Healthy Living Program. Hea lthy lifestyle subpolicies are defined by the Healthy Living Program. The de cision to not smoke will cover 25% of an employees health insurance. If an employee exer cises at least three times a week, over thirty minute intervals, another 25% of the employ ees health insurance will be covered. The remaining 50% of an employees he alth insurance coverage is de dicated to a healthy diet and decisions. The employee must have healthy lifesty le habits and must be checked by a doctor every year to ensure the i ndividual is actively well. 4.2.2.4 Benefits Policy 1.2.4 (10/20 points) The Benefit Policy defines requirements for th e employers benefit policy. The 401K is a retirement plan sponsored by the employer. The 401K is a standard practice for employers to use but the Benefit Policy sets exact parameters the construction company must operate by to obtain the points. Purpose. The Benefit Policy encourages employees to save for their financial future. The purpose of the Benefit Policy is to define a benef it standard that companies need to uphold and to define the specific parameters se t by benefit programs. Figure 4-3 he lps to define and explain the parameters of the Benefit Policy. Policy terms. To receive 10 points, the employer must offer a voluntary 401K retirement plan to all employees after one year of employment. The compa ny must contribute at least 50% of the employees contribution of up to 10% of the employees salary. The construction company must exceed the industry standards to receive 20 points. A voluntary 401K retirement plan must be offered to all employees after one year of employment. To receive 20 points for the Benefit

PAGE 63

63 Policy the employer must match or exceed a 100% of the employees contributions of up to 10% of the employees salary. The individual employee is able to retain all of their contributions and will obtain 50% of the employers contributions with over 2 years of employment and 100% of the employers contributions with five years of employment. 4.2.2.5 Educational Assistance Policy 1.2.5 (15 points) The Educational Assistance Policy is a 15 point policy that is proposed to advance the education of employees. The employees courses s hould enhance competencies for current tasks, enhance the performance of the employees curr ent position, or provide the employee new skills to advance to another position within the construction company. The policy requires the defined guidelines must be met to obtain the policys points. Purpose. The Educational Assistance Policy enable s regular full-time employees to attend continuing education courses to advance them selves. The continual improvement of an individual is a sustainable pr actice that helps to develop th e individual and the company. The policy advances knowledge and increases performance. Policy terms. The Educational Assistance Policy es tablishes a voluntary program that provides further education aid for full time employees. The construction company will reimburse employees for 50% of schooling up to $1,000 per semester for successfully completed courses. The following subpolicies must be met to obtain furthering education approval: Employee must attend an accredited school. Employee must not take more than two classes a semester. Employee must be a full time employee. Employee must not take classes during work hours. Employee must provide proof of successful schooling and associated expenditures for reimbursement.

PAGE 64

64 4.2.2.6 Daycare Policy 1.2.6 (10 points) The Daycare Policy is defines a daycare po licy for employees children. The Daycare Policy is worth 10 points. The policy sets guideli nes that enable employees who would typically be unable to afford daycare to ob tain daycare for their children. Da ycare has been proven to offer a positive environment for children and fosters an improved quality of living for the development of children. Purpose. Daycare fosters a safe environment for children while parents work. Childcare is a difficult task, especially for a single wo rking parent. Employees who cannot provide satisfactory daycare for their children are eligib le for additional daycare aid prescribed by the Daycare Policy. Policy terms. The applicant company must provide daycare aid for employees who are unable to afford satisfactory da ycare. Employees must apply for supplemental daycare aid. The company must provide supplemental funds for a pplicant employees who are proven unable to provide their children with daycare caused by insufficient funds. Supplemental daycare funds will be established on a case by case basis. In ad dition to providing additional funds for daycare the employer must also select one of the opti ons listed below to receive the Daycare Policy points. Option one is to provide a list of the five closes t daycare centers in relation to the jobsite or main office, depending on the location where the individual works. Option two is to form a company daycare center for employees children The daycare center can actually serve as a profit center for the company. The daycare facilit y must be able to safely house all of the employees children and charge fair daycare rates.

PAGE 65

65 4.2.2.7 Indoor Air Quality during Construction Policy 1.2.7 (5/10 points) Indoor Air Quality Policy helps to protect th e health and safety of its employees and subcontractors. The policy prescrib es specific requirements that must be met by the construction company to obtain 5 or 10 points. The policy estab lishes two different levels of indoor air quality performance during construction. Employee health a nd safety are a major concern of the Social Division of the framework. Purpose. The purpose of achieving a high indoor ai r quality during construction is to ensure the proper protection of all individua ls temporarily occupying the space during the construction of a project. There are many toxic chemicals released by building materials that can harm individuals without proper filtration. Policy terms. The SEE certification requires that th e construction company adhere to the policies set by LEED Credit 3.1: Construction Indoor Air Qualit y Management Plan. The LEED specifications state that selected projects mu st meet or exceed the recommended Control Measures of the Sheet Metal and Air Cond itioning National Contractors Association (SMACNA) Indoor Air Quality Guidelines fo r Occupied Buildings under Construction, 1995, Chapter 3 (USGBC 2005). If permanently installe d air handlers are used during construction to receive the points, filtration media with a Mi nimum Efficiency Reporti ng Value (MERV) of 8 shall be used at each return air grille, as determined by ASHRAE 52.2-1999. All filtration media must also immediately be replaced prior to occupa ncy. Five points will be awarded if 50% of all project points meet the guidelines prescribed above. Ten points will be awarded if 90% of the project points meet the policy re quirements. The Indoor Air Quality During Construction Policy will use a weighted value scale to obtain a fair value of project percentage. The scale associates the total cost of the project incl uding current change orders and pr ofit to a point value. Figure 4-4 and Figure 4-5 identify the specific features of the Indoor Air Quality Policy.

PAGE 66

66 Each project that follows the guidelines will be awarded the allowed points established by the project costs. The project points will then be divided by the total points established by the entire amount of work in progress. The calcula tion will give a fair representation of current projects in progress. The calcula tion establishes a weighted importa nce of the project so that an applicant company has a fair chance to obtain the topic point. If the pr oject does not have air conditioning in the design, the project will rece ive the certifiable point s in relation to value identified by the project value indicator. 4.2.2.8 Smoking Policy 1.2.8 (5 points) The Smoking Policy is an easily attainable 5 poi nt policy that increa ses healthy behavior habits and discourages smoking. Th e policy defines parameters for smoking areas to protect the health of nonparticipatin g individuals. Smoking is detrimental to the health of participants and nonparticipants. Purpose. Smoking is known to be a major cause of cancer and direc tly affects physical health. Smoking habits consume valuable operati on time and can have a direct or indirect negative effect on personnel. To protect the health of individuals, the company will abide by the requirements set in the Smoking Po licy to receive the points. Policy terms. The Smoking Policy is established to protect the health and safety. The policy defines areas and limitations of smoking. De signated smoking areas will be established at the office and at every construction site. A defi ned area must be a well ventilated space that includes a receptacle to dispose of cigarette remains. The policy prohibits smoking in areas shared by the public and areas defined but not limited to shared employee work spaces; entrances into main office buildings, site offices, and trailers;

PAGE 67

67 areas that present fire risks, including mate rial storage areas, lay down areas, and areas with combustible materials. 4.2.3 Obligations to the Subcontracted The Obligations to the Subcontracted Section ex plores the relationship of the contractor to vendors, suppliers, and subcontract ors. The Obligation to the Subc ontracted Section establishes policies of conduct that the construction company must follow in relation to subcontracted. The ethical policies help to develop a sustainable society. 4.2.3.1 Supplier Selection Policy 1.3.1 (prerequisite) The Supplier Selection Policy is an easily atta inable prerequisite. The Policy only requires the company abide by an ethical set of policies in its dealings with subcon tractors, suppliers, and vendors. The company must adopt and abide by an ethical set of policies to be eligible for certification. Purpose. It is imperative that the applicant construction companies operate to the highest ethical values. All subcontractors must be gi ven a fair chance to perform work in the open competitive market. The selection of subcontractors due to unethical motives is unacceptable. The Supplier Selection Policy creates fair mark et competition, helping to advance the economy. Policy terms. Procurement decisions must be made based on factors such as quality, service, price, deliv ery, and best value. Care must be take n to avoid conflicts and the appearance of partiality. Kickbacks are strictly prohibited and favoritism to subcontractors for unethical motives is strictly forbidden. 4.2.3.1 Supplier Diversity Policy 1.3.2 (15 points) The Supplier Diversity Policy stipulates a re quired amount of supplie rs and subcontractor must be minorities. The 15 point policy requires that the company uses minority suppliers for 2%

PAGE 68

68 of total subcontracted construction value. The po licy aids in the development of the community the helps to raise the cu rrent economic median. Purpose. The Supplier Diversity Policy gives minor ity owners the opportunity to obtain subcontracts in fair market competition. Th e Supplier Diversity Policy enables minority subcontractors to grow through in creases in their selection. It is important to understand the benefits that come fr om working with locally owned busin esses in the community. The Supplier Diversity Policy requires that the company to use a certain percentage of minority owned subcontractors in relation to the current amount of work being performed Policy terms. Minority subcontractors must be awar ded at least 2% of all subcontracts calculated out of the companys total project amount. The companys total project amount will use the current value of all subc ontracts and divide it by the curre nt total value of all minority subcontracts. 4.2.4 Obligations to Community and Customers Section The community and customers of the compa ny are essential to a companys success and performance. Construction companies must acknow ledge their obligations to the community and customers. The framework defines policies fo r companies in relation to the client and community. 4.2.4.1 Client Inform Policy 1.4.1 (prerequisite ) The Client Inform Policy is an easily attainab le prerequisite that helps the community and client to understand the constr uction companys policies and goals The Client Inform Policy is composed of 2 different sections. The first se ction defines the creati on of a brochure and the second segment defines required topics the compa ny must cover during the first meeting with the client.

PAGE 69

69 Purpose. The Client Inform Policy establishes th e companys track record and informs the client of the construction comp anys ethical stance on the social, economic, and environmental aspects of construction. The polic y helps in identifying the companys dedication to deliver a quality product and to adhere to sustainable principles. The incr eased awareness can prove to be beneficial to the company. The goal of the polic y is to increase awareness about sustainable practices through the policy terms. Policy terms. The company must create a brochure that informs stakeholders about sustainable practices and displa y the construction services offe red by the company. The brochure must identify the companys objectives and defi ne their performance. The goal is to promote sustainable development to the clients and comm unity. The company is also required to supply the client with the companys goals, practices and capabilities during the first meeting. 4.2.4.2 Proper Storage of Materi als Policy 1.4.2 (prerequisite) The proper storage of materials is a standard practice of the construc tion industry. Material must be able to uphold their integrity to produ ce a quality product for the client. The Proper Storage of Materials Policy prescribes specific requirements the company must perform to obtain the prerequisite. Purpose. The proper storage of all materials is important to offer a finished product without defects. If certain mate rials are not protected, moisture damage can occur. This can affect the quality of the final product, the indoo r air quality of the building, and can even cause illnesses. Policy terms. The applicant company must properly store materials in the manner described in the Indoor Environmental Quality section of the LEED, cr edit 3.1 to receive the proper storage of materials point. LEED credit 3.1 states Protect stored onsite or installed absorptive materials from moisture damage (USGBC 2005). The policy offers prescriptive

PAGE 70

70 measures to ensure that materials are properly stor ed. All materials that w ill be installed with in two days must be covered with weather resistant plastic to prot ect the materials integrity. Any absorptive materials that will not be installed within two days and can be damaged by weather must be stored in a dry stor age container on or off site. 4.2.4.3 Constructive Construction Criticism Policy 1.4.3 (10 points) The contractor shall put forth an effort to work with the architect in the development of the project. The contractor has e xpertise in construction methods and should share knowledge gained through experience to make the buildings cons truction, building systems and building operate more efficiently in cost and time. Purpose. The Constructive Construction Criticism Policy will attempt to work and aid in the design process, giving advice pertaining to th e construction of the bui lding and the buildings operating systems. The contractor has expertise and knowledge of construc tion that the architect does not have. Applying this knowledge to the de sign can save money, reduce waste, and save energy. Policy terms. The contractors should have an open dialogue with the architect and be willing to set forth advice to the architect a bout energy conserving met hods or tactics. The contractor will aid the architect in selecting properly sized energy efficient systems. Value engineering is a valuable additional quality to the construction process and must be considered by the contractor. 4.2.4.4 Volunteerism Policy 1.4.4 (5 points) The Volunteerism Policy is a 5 point policy that is dedicated to giving back to the community. The policy can be obtained through vo lunteering a specified amount of time. The applicant construction company can attain the 5 point policy th rough adopting the requirements set by the policy.

PAGE 71

71 Purpose. Volunteering time establishes an ethical responsibility to give back to the community. It is important increase the conditi ons of the surrounding environment to promote sustainable development. The company will give back to the community and be recognized for the positive efforts it has made. Volunteering he lps the community and helps to identify the company as a reputable and ethical organization. Policy terms. The Volunteerism Policy requires the company to form an employee volunteer program. The volunteer pr ogram must form relationshi ps with volunteer companies and identify the not for profit companies with which it is involved. It is re quired that the heads of each department in the construction company mu st volunteer at least 50 hours a year. It is important for these leaders of the company to serve as an example for the employees. It is recommended that each employee volunteer at l east sixteen hours a year, but this is not mandatory. The volunteer program will allow employees two days off of work to complete the recommended minimum volunteer hours. If an employee chooses to volunteer over the recommended sixteen hours, the construction co mpany does not have any obligation to give more time off to the volunteer. 4.3 SEE Evaluation, Ec onomic Division The Economic Division of the SEE Evaluation as one sections composed of two policies. The first policy addresses the obl igation of the company to be transparent. The second policy addresses the obligation of the company to its shareholders. Th ese two topics are closely related to each other but define different advances toward sustainable development. The economic performance and values of the compa ny are identified in Economic Division. 4.3.1 Obligation to Stakeholders The Obligation to Stakeholders Section addre sses a companys responsibility to any party that is affected by the company s actions; this includes the stoc kholder, employee, subcontractor,

PAGE 72

72 and community. The applicant company must acknow ledge its power to eff ectively influence the surrounding stakeholders. The company has the abili ty to positively affect the current social, economic, and environmental performance of other companies through the promotion of sustainable development. 4.3.1.2 Transparency Policy 2.1.1 (prerequisite) The Transparency Policy is a prerequisite of the SEE Evaluations framework. The policy requires the company disclose its financial perf ormance to all stakeholders. The policy defines the economic requirements the company must oper ate by, disclosing all performance information to the companys shareholders. Purpose. The purpose of the Transparency Poli cy is to hold construction companies accountable though openly published re ports. Openly published reports help to fight corruption and misappropriated funds. All shareholders must be able to access published reports that identifies and reveals information about the companys social, economic, and environmental performance. Policy terms. All of the company performance must be transparent. The organization must make the companys performance available to all employees, clients, and the public though openly published performance reports. The compa ny must produce a biannual report disclosing the required information to be certified by the SEE Evaluation. 4.3.1.2 Shareholders Statement Policy 2.1.2 (prerequisite) The Shareholders Statement Policy identifie s the companys dedica tion to adhere to sustainable principles and abide by the polic ies defined in SEE Evaluations framework. Shareholders may feel obligated to invest in a social, economic, and environmental responsible company, the obligation to shareholder statement helps to identify the companys stance towards sustainable development.

PAGE 73

73 Purpose. Construction companies have an obligation to their sh areholders. Typically the primary concern of the shareholder is the econo mic performance of their investment, but some investors do not only consider th e economic output of their invest ment. Some investors believe it is their moral obligation to invest in comp anies that also behave in a socially and environmentally responsible manner. This practic e enables the shareholder to make a profit and acts as an advocate of sustainable development. Policy terms. The company must be responsive to th e shareholders concerns and provide a company statement to identify the companys ethical stance and defi ne its dedication to sustainable development. The company must defi ne the companys track record and inform the shareholder of the construction companys ethical stance on the social, economic, and environmental aspects of construction. Companies mu st work with their shareholders to identify specific issues of concern. It is important to form an open dialogue with all of the shareholders to communicate the performance of the co mpany to gain input and advice 4.4 SEE Evaluation, Environmental Division The Environmental Division of the SEE Evalua tion is divided into two sections, dealing with two different segments of a constructi on company. The Environmental Section of the framework is divided into Office Obligation a nd Site Obligation. The obligations approach construction inefficiencies from different aspe cts, helping to encompass every area of the construction industry. 4.4.1 Office Obligation The Office Section addresses environmental issues and polices that effect the office and the general policies of the company. The compa nys beliefs must be effectively represented through its dedication to the environment. Many comp anies need to alter th eir current practices. The alteration of company policies begin with a ch ange in attitude towards the environment. The

PAGE 74

74 company leaders need to act as examples. The lead ers of the company will play a pivotal role in the success of the SEE Evaluation. They must uphold the policies a nd insist that their subordinates abide by them. Each policy that is instituted by the company must include an explanation for the decision. The decision must de fine the purpose, reasoning, and positive effect that the new policy has on the environment. An example of this would be for a company to send out a demanding letter that banned the use of Styrofoam cups. If an individual is forbidden to use Styrofoam cups without an explanation, it is likely that they the demand will be resented. If the policy is approached in a manner of respect, then it would more likely be embraced. The internal decision to reduce or eliminate the use of Styrofoam needs to be explained. The policy shoul d explain the reasoning behind the decision. The explanation should include data about the negative impact of Styrofoam and disposable waste. The information should incl ude reasoning such as, Styrofoam is composed of harmful chemicals, takes over 500 years for on e cup to disintegrate, an d takes up to 25 to 30% of the current land fill volume in the United St ates. In addition the company should provide all the employees with a reusable container, cup, or ceramic mug to properl y instill the sense of environmental responsibility. With this explanat ion and alternative, th e company policy would most likely be embraces by employees. 4.4.1.1 New Company Offices and Renovat ions Policy 3.1.1 (prerequisite) Any new facilities built for use of the comp any must be LEED or Green Globe certified. The theory behind this prerequisite is that firm s need to practice what they preach. The company must act as a leader in environmental perfor mance. Any product produced for the use of the construction company must promote sustainabilit y and should exercise environmentally friendly practices and products.

PAGE 75

75 Purpose. Construction companies should promote sust ainability in ever y aspect possible, including their buildi ng product. Company renovations, additi ons, and buildings need to be environmentally friendly to improve the quality and performance of the built environment to the extent the construction can control. Policy terms. Any new renovations, interior renovati ons, or buildings completed for the use of the construction company mu st be either certified by Green Globes or LEED to ensure the company is being environmentally responsible in their decisions. All renovations must be as environmentally friendly as possi ble, including environmentally friendly materials and efficient operating performance of building systems. 4.4.1.2Compact Florescent Light Bulbs and En ergy Star Policy 3.1.2 (prerequisite) The policy is an environmental prerequisite that must be met fo r certification. Any new appliance purchased for the company use must be environmentally friendly. Dedicated construction companies are responsible to enviro nment. The use of energy efficient products help to decrease the negative impact a company creates on the environment. Purpose. The Energy Star program certifies over fifty different product categories. The Energy Star label identifies en ergy efficient products. Energy Star certified products help a business to operate more efficiently than with standard products. This means the product will save the company money and energy. Energy St ar products are an in telligent and ethical investment. Energy Star certified products and energy efficient lights are both simple steps a company can take to become more sustainable. These efficient products consume less electricity and reduce the amount of greenhouse gases produced. Policy terms. The certified company must abide by the guidelines defined by the CFL and Energy Star Policy: All new appliances purchased by the comp any must be Energy Star certified.

PAGE 76

76 All new light bulbs used by the company must be compact florescent light bulbs CFLs or as energy efficient as CFLs. 4.4.1.3 Recycle Program Policy 3.1.3 (prerequisite) The Recycle Program Policy promotes sustaina ble practices by reduc ing the amount of raw materials that need to be extracted from the earth The prerequisite strictly encourages a simple habit that can be adopted by employees. By pr oviding ample recycling stations there is no deterrent to recycling. Purpose. The Recycle Program Policy must be establ ished for the office to be certified by the evaluation. As a minimum, 95% of all recyclable material disposed of at the office must be recycled. This point will demand the involvement of all employees of the company. Recycling is the responsibility of all individuals. It is every empl oyees responsibility to carry out environmentally friendly practices. Recycling is a simple procedure that involves all individuals, which consumes very little effort and time. Policy terms. Recycle stations will be establishe d throughout the offices of the company and at all jobsite trailers. There must be at least one recycle retainer, including receptacles for paper, plastic, glass, and metals for every 2,500 s quare feet of space. If the space exceeds two thousand square feet then two recycle retainers must be placed in the office. Each additional 2500 square feet must include an additional recy cle receptacle. Every floor of the office must have a recycle receptacle. The r eceptacles cannot be placed within 50 feet of each other. All of the companys expired documentation and non active plans must be recycl ed. Paper use in the construction industry is abundant and needs to be addressed. The receptacles must be strategically located for the convenience of the employees and to encourage recycling.

PAGE 77

77 4.4.1.4 Water Efficiency Policy 3.1.4 (15 points) Water reduction is a simple goal for the cons truction company to attain. The cost of becoming water efficient has a relatively short pa y back period. The office must exercise water conservation through the use of waterless urinal s, ultra low flow fixt ures, and toilet. The company must also have effi ciently designed landscaping. Purpose. The Water Efficiency Policys purpose is to improve construction companies use of water. The water use can be drastically reduced through simple steps. Landscaping is an outlet that can reduce water usage. The office la ndscape must be designed to reduce irrigation demands. This task can be completed through sp ecifying trees and plants that do not require large amounts of irrigation. Wa ter reduction technologies will prove to be a beneficial investment to the company and environment because of the increasing cost of water. Policy terms. The construction companys office s hould use water efficient fixtures, urinals and toilets and no water may be used to irrigate the offices landscaping. There can not be permanent irrigation on the construction compan ys property. The term s reduce the industry standard water consumption. Water reduction is ea sily obtained through co nscientious habits and the uses of water efficient technologies. 4.4.1.5 Reusable Cup Policy 3.1.5 (5 points) The Reusable Cup Policy is an easily attainab le 5 point policy. The policy help to bring awareness to the simple steps that can be take n to produce a more sustainable environment. The Reusable Cup Policy is a policy that can be easily instated by the company. Purpose. The purpose of the Reusable Cup Policy is to reduce the amount of waste generated by the company. This simple pol icy can save the company money through the decreased costs of purchasing disposable c ups. The Reusable Cup Policy helps to raise awareness about sustainable practices and helps to promote a positive outlook.

PAGE 78

78 Policy terms. The Reusable Cup Policy states the applicant company will provide every employee with a permanent cup. The cup should be labeled and uniquely identified for each employee. The container should be composed of an environmentally friend ly material, include a lid and have insulative properties. If the policy, is implemented all employees must be informed of the reasons they should use reusable cups instead of Styrofoam and disposable cups. The information should include the amount of waste that disposable cups gene rate and the amount of waste that is being reduced because of using a reusable cups. 4.4.2 Site Obligation The Site Obligation Section addresses environm ental issues that directly pertain to the construction site. The Site Obligation Section develops policies that will be maintained on the jobsite. The Site Obligations addressed in the framework ar e all issues over which the construction company controls a nd has the ability to change. 4.4.2.1 Waste Diversion Policy 3.2.1 (25 points) Waste diversion is an importa nt topic in the construction industry has a profound effect sustainable development. The highly valued pol icy influences companies to increase waste diversion practices. There is a limited amount of resources av ailable on planet earth. These resources must be used, reused, and recycled to increase the life of a material. Materials should not serve one purpose and then be disposed of if we are to be a sustainable society. Purpose. The construction industry generates over a hundred million tons of waste each year. Waste reduction is essential in sustaina ble development. Construction, demolition, and renovation generate about 35% of a ll generated waste. It is essen tial for the construction industry to reduce the amount of waste it generates. Policy terms. The Waste Diversion Policy requires th at 90% of all recyclable material must be recycled. The policy requi res the construction company to provide recyclable containers

PAGE 79

79 on every jobsite. There must be an established container for woods, plastics, and metals. The waste generation of recyclable materials will be calculated each month to ensure the Waste Diversion Policy is being followed. 4.4.2.2 Regional Materials Policy 3.2.2 (15 points) The Regional Materials Policy is a 15 point policy that requires companies to obtain supplies that have less than a 1,000 mile life cycle process from extraction to the jobsite. The policy requires materials selected by the contactors are as local to the jobsite as possible through establishing a maximum distance fo r a specified amount of materi als to be extracted from. Purpose. The closer materials are extracted and ma nufactured in relati on to the site, the less energy will be consumed for transportation. The closer the materials are to the site the less energy used. The less energy used th e less greenhouse gases are produced. Policy terms. Fifteen percent of all project materi als cannot exceed a total 1,000 mile life cycle distance from extraction to jo bsite. It is understood that th e architect can specify materials that do not meet these requirements. If this occu rs, these specified noncompliant materials can be subtracted out of the total project cost. To ear n the Regional Material poi nts, the total distance that 15 % of all materials can tr avel from extraction to jobsit e is 1000 miles. The percentage calculation is derived by obtaining the total project cost and subt racting noncompliant architect specified materials. The total from the previous calculation is then divi ded by the cost of all regional materials that meet the sp ecifications. If the calculation is greater than 15% for the total average of all current projects, the point is awarded. 4.4.2.3 Site Condition Policy 3.2.3 (10 points) The Site Condition Policy require s that every construction site the company builds must be upheld to the highest quality standards and must meet every aspect prescribed in the policy

PAGE 80

80 terms. The site must be maintained and cleaned daily to provide a c onducive work environment for employees and subcontractors. Purpose. The condition of the site is a direct statement of the construction companys responsibility to the environment. It is important to keep the site in good working condition so the employees and non participants are not hindered while on the construction site. Policy terms. The Site Condition Policy point is a ssociated to the Sustainable Sites perquisite 1 of LEED 2.2., Constr uction Activity Pollution Preven tion. The Site Condition Policy requires construction companies to maintain control of airborne particles, water waste, and earth sedimentation. Trash receptacles must be provid ed every 5,000 square feet of the site and on every floor construction takes pla ce. The site must be maintained and cleaned daily to provide a conducive work environment. To obtain the Site Condition Policy point, the construction company must meet the define policy terms: All construction sites must be compliant with all laws and ordinances of the project location. All construction sites must be compliant with the erosion and sedimentation requirements of the EPA. All construction sites must be cleaned and maintained daily by construction personnel. 4.4.2.4 Leadership in Environmental Efficient Design (LEED) Accredited Professional Employee Policy 3.2.4 (10 points) LEED Accredited professionals help to pr omote the use of the LEED certification. Accredited professionals (AP) are knowledgeable about environmental performance and help to promote sustainable development. The improvement of the built environment is a step towards sustainable development. The LEED AP facil itates the to LEED cer tification process. Purpose. A company certified by the SEE Evaluati on must be knowledgeable in all areas of sustainability, incl uding the building product. The SEE Evaluation promotes sustainable

PAGE 81

81 development in any applicable manner. A compa ny that builds LEED certified projects needs to be knowledgeable about sustainable construction certification systems Policy terms. Ten percent of the companys employees must be LEED accredited professionals. 4.4.2.5 Electric Documentatio n Policy 3.2.5 (10 points) The Electric Documentation Policy promotes a dvances in technology that help to improve the performance and efficiency of the applican t company. Electric documentation helps to reduce the massive amount of paper consumed by construction companies. Documents and files can be stored electronically which is more preferable than paper documentation that takes up space and produces waste. Purpose. The construction industrys foundatio n is traditionally based on paper documentation. The ability of a company to divert from this practice will greatly benefit the environment. Advances in technology have el iminated the need fo r an excess of paper documentation. Electronic documentation has enab led companies to reduce their paper use by electronically storing information. Policy terms. To receive the Electronic Construc tion Documentation Policy points the company must use a paperless documentation syst em. The company must also eliminate the use of paper documentation to the extent possible. If the company does not eliminate the use of paper documentation, they are double documenting. The doubl e documenting practice is inefficient and does not provide a benefit to the environmen t therefore will not receive the points.

PAGE 82

82 Figure 4-1. SEE Evaluation poi nts and prerequisites layout.

PAGE 83

83 Figure 4-2. Healthy Living Program, S EE Evaluation Health Insurance Policy. Figure 4-3. Benefit Policy Figure 4-4. Project value i ndicator for SEE Evaluation.

PAGE 84

84 Figure 4-5. Example Project Calculation for SEE Evaluation, Indoor Air Quality During Construction.

PAGE 85

85 Figure 4-6. The SEE Evalua tion point and prerequisi te calculation sheet.

PAGE 86

86 CHAPTER 5 IMPLEMENTATION OF THE SEE EVALUA TION AND ASSOCIATED IMPLICATIONS There are many possibilities for the future of the SEE Evaluation. The demand for ethically and efficient construction companies will come in the form of governmental policies and the demands of conscientious clients. The seal of the certification will identify reputable companies that promote sustainable development. 5.1 Implementation into the Construction Industry Many construction companies will have to alte r the way that they conduct business if they intend to be certified by the SEE Evaluation, wh ile other construction companies may not have to change any of their operati onal procedures and policies. Th e SEE Evaluations framework is based on a set of defined policies. If the company complies with the standards, they are eligible for certification. The framework only sets policies of operation that the certified companies must abide. Through the certification process, constr uction companies are able to compare themselves with other certified c onstruction companies. The framework hypothetically allows companies to operate on a fair playing field. Implementing th e certification policies into the construction industry would result in a pos itive change from the current industry standards. 5.1.1 Barriers to Implementation into the Construction Industry There are barriers to the implementation of the framework. It is evident that the construction industry is an industr y that is adverse to change; th erefore the implementation of the framework would be very difficult. The sta ndard operating practices of many construction companies are likely to not change because of their current economic condition. Change will occur if laws and incentives are created by governmental polic ies to promote sustainable development.

PAGE 87

87 5.1.2 Implementation of Performance Indicators Performance indicators are essential for th e success of the SEE Evaluation. Performance indicators are qualitative or quantitative measures that provi de an indication a companys performance of a specific policy. Performance indi cators identify if change has occurred since the implementation of the framework and if the change has had a positive or negative impact. Performance indicators establis hed in the SEE Evaluation will id entify the performance of the certified company and notify the stakeholder of their success. 5.1.3 Social Implication The effects of applying the social policies in a construction comp any will significantly impact the company. The company will have clea rly defined ethical parameters. The social policies help employees to understand the prope r way to conduct themselves in a sustainable manner. Applying the social prereq uisites and points will drastically alter the current social conditions of construction industry, but may incr ease construction costs. The proper treatment of all employees, clients, and subcontractors is im perative to the certifications success, but will mostly likely increase the cost of the companys operation. Em ployee satisfaction evaluations should be performed to ensure quality social performance. 5.1.4 Economic Implication Current stockholder reporting is fairly well established in Amer ica. There is no direct cost associated with a company to be transparent. Ther e might be an indirect association of cost to implement transparent practices into the companys accounting policy. There are no legitimate reasons for a company to not be transparent. Th e primary reasons a company may not want to be transparent are to prevent the di sclosure of the companys profita bility, expose possible internal misleadings, or hide large sa laries of key personnel.

PAGE 88

88 5.1.5 Environmental Implication Applying the SEE Evaluation framework into the practices of the construction industry will have a positive effect on the environment. Benchmarking will be used to establish quantitative and qualitative values. The benchmar king process examines the performance of the company pre and post implementation of the framework to identify the improvement. The amount of energy consumed, materials utilized, water consumed, and carbon dioxide generated will be measured by the certification. The G3 performance indicators inform the construction company how efficiently it is operating. The S EE Evaluation will have a positive effect on the environment by encouraging companies to reduc e waste and become energy efficient. The implications will vary for each construction compa ny based on their current policy and practices. 5.2 Implementation of SEE Evaluati on in a Construction Company The implementation of the framework in a construction company should be approached in a collective manner. The certification process begins by evaluating th e construction company current policies. Areas of improvement toward s sustainable development are identified by the defined policies. Once the deficiencies of the company are defined, the next procedure is to institute the corrective measures. The prerequisites identify manda tory areas of improvement and the points improve the companys performance. Every employee should be involved in the process of point selection to help create a demo cratic atmosphere. It is important for employees to convey the points they believe to be impor tant. The point select ion process should be approached as a democratic procedure where ea ch employee retains the right to vote on the topics that they value and desire to obtain. It is important to use this democratic process in order to ensure that each voice is heard. The topic sel ection will help to defi ne the quantity of points attainable by the construction company. It will also help to identify the certification level attainable by the construction company. The higher the certification level, the better the ethical

PAGE 89

89 and efficient performance of the company. The demo cratic process identifie s the topics that are valued by the company and directs the areas in which they will attempt to receive certification points. The evaluation does not require that all of the select ed points are obtained, it is only mandatory that they are attempted. Once the attemptable points are identified the company must update their policies to unsure they are congrue nt with the frameworks policies. The company must adopt the selected practices and instate the new policies.

PAGE 90

90 CHAPTER 6 CONCULSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS The SEE Evaluation was created to advance su stainable development in the construction industry. The evaluation encourages constructio n companies to alter their current operating practices and policies and to evolve into a socially, economically, and environmentally responsible organization. The framework of the evaluation must al so adapt to advance sustainable practices. The current framework provides a set of guidelines by which the construction industry should operate in order to advance sustaina ble development but will evolve with the advances of sustainability. 6.1 Future of the SEE Evaluation The SEE Evaluation has tremendous potential to grow into a la rge third party certification system for construction companies. The framew ork will grow and adapt as the wealth of knowledge about sustainable practices increase s. The SEE Evaluations framework has the capacity to be altered and fine tuned in order to operate to its optimum ability. The certification is designed to be adaptable to new demands a nd suggestions of the construction industry, other sustainable organizations, and ne wly created laws. The evaluation is part of growing process. Without adoptability the nature the certification is quickly ou tdated due to the expanding knowledge of sustainability. The evaluation must adopt to properly grow with time. It must alter and mutate to new prescribed policies for conti nual improvement of the construction industry but is important the evaluation conti nue to have defined policies to ensure quality performance of construction companies. The framework will change in the future to meet and define new policies that properly identify the de mands of a sustainable culture.

PAGE 91

91 6.1.1 Further Development The next step in bringing the SEE Evaluation to life would to be to gain feedback about each policy for insight of its feasibility and prac ticality. The most informative solution would be to monitor a construction company for a year befo re instituting the certif ication, then monitoring its actions while it operates in accordance with the frameworks polic ies. This would be beneficial in understanding what effects would oc cur, which topics apply directly to creating a sustainable future for the construction industry, and pinpointing new directions for growth. The SEE Evaluation policies will go out for review am ong construction professionals, professors, and key organizations to gain different perspectives on the same topics. Future advances of the SEE Evaluation c ould use surveys of em ployees from certified companies to help identify and establish the pr oper value of each specified policy. The survey would help define potential areas of improvement in the construction industry. An in depth cost evaluation for each point and prerequisite will need to occur to have an understanding of the actual cost associated with the policies. In many sections the cost difference will vary due to the construction companies current policies. If the company already exercises a sustainability policy, that particular policy would not increase its current operating costs of the company. The SEE Evaluation could grow to include new po licies for different types of construction organizations. The framework could be forma tted to include design build and construction management companies. The SEE Evaluation has great potential to be a step in the right direction for the entire construc tion industry. By trail and error in the workplace, it is expected that the certification would adapt to what is needed to improve sustainable practices. 6.1.2 Future Collaboration The SEE Evaluation could eventually partner with existing programs to form mutually beneficial relationships that further advance sustainable development. The SEE Evaluation could

PAGE 92

92 team up with the United States Green Build ing Councils LEED program. The LEED program could offer innovation credits for being SEE cer tified. This relationship would reward the company for being certified by the SEE Evaluatio n. The framework has existing points that are similar to LEED 2.2 but takes a different appr oach towards the construction. The different aspects of construction enable co mpanies to combines and cover more areas of sustainability. The evaluation requires company to operate in part icular manner all the time rather than when building a LEED certified project. 6.2 Conclusion The SEE Evaluation is a sust ainable certification system that evaluates construction companies based on their social, economic, and environmental performance. A set of evolving policies were developed through previous laws, standards, certifications, and documents to equally evaluate small, medium, and large constr uction companies. The developed policies of the SEE Evaluation were tailored to address specific inefficiencies of the c onstruction industry. The three pronged framework is limited to the control and capabilities of the contractor to positively influence sustainable development. The SEE Evaluation improves the construction industry by rating construction companies on the adoption of policies in a point based format.

PAGE 93

93 LIST OF REFERENCES Clark, W., and Kates, R. W. (1999). Our common journey: A trans ition toward sustainability National Academy Press, Washington, D.C. Eco-Management and Auditing Scheme. (2001). Guidance on entity suitable for registration to emas Office for Official Publications of the European Communities, Brussels. Eco-Management and Auditing Scheme. ( 1995). The main stages of emas. (June 21, 2007). Equal Employment Opportunity Commissi on. (1997). The equal pay act of 1963. (Mar. 1, 2007). Franklin Associates. (1998). Characterization of Building Re lated Construction and Demolition Debris in the United States The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Municipal and Industrial Solid Waste Division Office of Solid Waste, Prairie Village, Ks. Global Environmental Management Initiative. (2005). Vision. Gemis strategic goals, (May 11, 2007). Institute of Social and Et hical Accountability. (2003). Accountability 1000 assurance standard AccountAbility, London. Institute of Social and Et hical AccountAbility. (1999). Accountability 1000 framework, standards, guidelines and professional qualification AccountAbility, London. Social Accountability International. (2001). Social accountability 8000 Social Accountability International Publications, New York. United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Division for Sustainable Development. (2005). Agenda 21. (Jan. 18, 2007). United States Department of Labor. (2007). Walsh -healy public contract act, title 41, chapter 1 35. Employment law guide: Wages and supply & equipment contracts, (Feb. 21, 2007). United States Green Building Council. (2005). Leadership in energy and environmental design for new construction 2.2 USGBC Publications, Washington, D.C. United States Census Bureau. (2007). World population information World population trends, (Jan. 27, 2007). World Business Council for Sustainable Development. (1999). CSR, meeting changing expectations, WBCSD Publications, Cambridge, Mass.

PAGE 94

94 World Commission on Environmen t and Development. (1987). Our common future Oxford University Press, Oxford.

PAGE 95

95 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH John Robert Banting was accepted to the Universi ty of Florida beginning with the fall of 2001. With four years of undergra duate schooling under his belt, he received a Bachelor of Design from the University of Florida School of Architecture. Continuing his education at the University of Florida, he proceeded to obtain his Master of Science in Building Construction with a focus in sustainability in 2007. During the six years he spent at the Universi ty of Florida, he has made many new and profound relationships through the School of Architecture and the School of Building Construction. John interned with both large and small construction companies during the summers of his graduate schooling. John will pursu e a job in the construction industry. He will also attain a LEED accredited pr ofessional certification in hope s to work on primarily LEEDcertified projects. John accepted the position of Project Engineer from his future employer, Hedrick Brothers Construction, with the goal of obtaining a position in the company to advance sustainable development in the construction industry.