Panelists discuss fire safety and sustainable building design

Blog Post created by mikehazell Employee on Jun 11, 2013


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Dr. Lou Gritzo of FM Global, Amanda Kimball of the Fire Protection Research Foundation, Brian Meacham of Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Daniel O'Connor with AON Fire Protection and Tracy Vecchiarelli with NFPA made up today's panel to discuss fire safety and sustainable building design. 

This subject was the topic of a recent Fire Protection Research Foundation symposium that brough together fire protection and architect communities to discuss thoughts and ideas on sustainability. The proceedings from this symposium are available online

Today's panelists summarized some of the issues and ideas brought up there. Green building has become a global focus, however fire safety considerations and potential fire hazards have not been systematically studied. A recent Research Foundation and WPI study looked at fire incidents in order to identify and develop a set of green elements that increased fire risk nd decreased safety, including new facade materials, new insulation and roofing materials, photovoltaic panels and more. 

Good fire protection is integral to sustainability, all panelists reinforced. A fire in a green building may increase emissions and the negative impact by a factor of 3. For this reason, current green certifications and codes/standards should begin to include fire safety considerations for green buildings and elements. Please download the presentation for more details, [The Intersection of Fire Safety and Sustainable Building Design | http://www.nfpa.org/download.asp?type=2013cepapers&file=t35.pdf] (free, requires sign-in).