June 4-6 in Santa Fe

 

Seth Roffman

 

 

Water is the true limit to growth in the Southwest. Buildings must become radically more water efficient. New tools and regulatory models have been developed, allowing us to do this now. – Kim Shanahan, executive officer, SFAHBA

 

Making our communities sustainable in the long term given predicted drops in renewable surface water flows, and resilient to short -term and long-term impacts from the effects of climate change, are critical issues across the southwestern United States, as well as many other regions around the world. — Santa Fe City Councilor Peter Ives

 

 

The Santa Fe Home Builders Association, the Santa Fe Green Chamber of Commerce, the City of Santa Fe and the national Green Builder Coalition are presenting the first ever Next Generation Water Summit, at the Santa Fe Community Convention Center from June 4–6. This professional summit includes a free Santa Fe Green Chamber of Commerce Business Expo on the first day.

 

On that Sunday, the public can also attend any of 12 free sessions on water presented by northern New Mexico water experts. Subjects will include water-efficiency techniques for homeowners; the food, energy, water nexus; the Residential Green Building Code Update; the Aamodt settlement update; the use of the Water Efficiency Rating Score, and other topics. The following two days will feature speakers from around the country offering presentations that address water issues in the Southwest. There will be follow-up opportunities for participants to actualize ideas and solutions that come out of the summit’s discussions.

 

Santa Fean Ed Mazria, founder of the 2030 Challenge, is one of two keynote speakers at the summit. The other is Mary Ann Dickinson of the Alliance for Water Efficiency, who will talk about the Net Blue Ordinance Initiative. Some of the other speakers: Santa Fe Mayor Javier Gonzales; Santa Fe Area Homebuilder Association’s (SFAHBA) executive officer, Kim Shanahan; Jonah Schein from the Environmental Protection Agency, who will speak about the future of WaterSense for New Homes program; and Doug Bennett from the Southern Nevada Water Authority. Bennett will speak on “No Water, No Growth.”

 

This national summit will highlight Santa Fe’s leadership role in water conservation and bring together other water leaders from the West who work in stormwater management, water reuse and water efficiency. The summit is happening at this time in part because The WERS® (Water Efficiency Rating Score) protocol is now mandatory for anyone building a house in the city of Santa Fe.

 

The summit will target three tracks, all of which relate to the value of using WERS®: the Builder/Architect/Developer; Water District Professionals; and Water Harvesting Professionals. “If we don’t figure out how to get to net-zero on water,” says Shanahan, “the homebuilding industry will be imperiled within a generation. Future generations of homebuilders in the western United States will look back on this important water summit as the starting point for addressing the limitations that water availability imposes upon our industry.”

 

Registration for the full summit costs $299. Student registration is $50. Booths are available for the Green Expo and Green Home Show for $499. Contact Glenn Schiffbauer at glenn@nmgreenchamber.com or go to www.santafegreenchamber.org. Related pre-summit courses are being offered at Santa Fe Community College. More information and registration details can be found at www.nextgenerationwatersummit.com