Why work with standards? Isn’t that, um, boring?
Yes, but . . . industry standards often prove to be a big lever for causing the right (or the wrong) things to be done on a very broad scale. Witness the USA’s gas mileage standards for cars and trucks, or California’s Title 24 minimum energy performance standards for buildings. All too often, however, a standard proposed for the benefit of society will seem a threat to one or several entrenched interests, who typically offer skilled resistance using the tricks and strategies of the blood sport that is standards development. Public interest standards work is dreary, frustrating, and time-consuming, but nonetheless Ecological Building Network recognizes the importance of developing certain building standards when:
- They are of significant environmental and/or societal benefit, and
- There’s no one else around to take up the task.