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Paul Fisette, Department Head, named to National Academies Panel on U.S. Capitol Complex

Posted: June 5th, 2009

The National Academies has invited Paul Fisette, Professor and Department Head of Natural Resources Conservation to serve on an expert panel to explore the scientific and technical issues related to implementing energy and sustainability initiatives throughout the U.S. Capitol Complex. The U.S. Capitol Complex comprises 25 major buildings on Capitol Hill, including the Capitol building, the House and Senate office buildings, the Supreme Court, the Library of Congress, the U.S. Botanic Gardens, and various support facilities. Since 2004, the Office of the Architect of the Capitol (AOC) has been undertaking the development of a new Capitol Complex Master Plan. The review will include an in-depth critique and evaluation of a draft Sustainability Framework Plan and the identification of energy efficiency and sustainability opportunities in two new projects to be accomplished in the near future: a whole building renewal of the Cannon House Office Building and a new parking garage for the Senate. The AOC is seeking to learn more about state-of-the-art methods and technologies for enhancing the sustainability of its facilities and surrounding grounds. Approximately 15 experts are being invited to engage in a dialogue with the AOC staff to assist them in developing its energy efficiency and sustainability strategies and plans for the entire Capitol Complex and for individual types of structures. The invitees will have expertise in architecture, engineering, historic preservation, sustainable design, energy efficiency, urban planning, building performance, engineering economics, building materials and technologies. The evaluation will be devoted to overviews of the current status of the Capitol Complex Master Plan, current legislation and other guidance regarding energy and sustainability, and planned and ongoing initiatives in this regard. There will be an in-depth discussion on the draft Sustainability Framework Plan including site visits on Capitol Hill to include the new Capitol Visitors Center, the Cannon House Office Building, and the site where a new Senate garage is planned.