Green Builder Coalition

The Torch – March 8, 2019

The Torch Offical Publication of Green Builder Coalition


3rd Annual Next Generation Water Summit Workshops Announced

The Next Generation Water Summit is pleased to announce a very broad range of pre-and post-Summit water workshops. Several of the workshops will start prior to the Summit on June 5th and continue after the Summit through June 25th.

The workshops include: Greywater Basics, Water Efficiency Rating Score (WERS)® Verifier and Consultant training, Commercial Water Auditor Training, Hotel Water Audits, QWEL Landscape training, and several others. This is the first time several of these courses will be presented in New Mexico and are open to professionals and students.

Next Generation Water Summit logoThe Commercial Restaurant Water Auditor class, held June 7th and June 10th, is the first of its kind anywhere in the country. This class is being taught by Bill Hoffman, and those who attend and successfully pass the test will become a Commercial Restaurant Water Auditor. The City of Santa Fe Water Conservation Office will assist in the recruitment of restaurants to be audited and will use the auditors that successfully complete this workshop. A test and a sample audit will be performed as part of the class.

“The Summit always represents an educational opportunity for those interested in a water career,” stated Christine Chavez, Manager of the Water Conservation Office for the City of Santa Fe. “This year we are especially excited to see the rollout of our Commercial Restaurant Audit Program. Saving water is always important in Santa Fe, and this class expands our conservation programs into the commercial restaurant sector. We will support this program with rebates and promotions to hopefully audit over 200 restaurants during the next 12-18 months,” she concluded.

The Water Efficiency Rating Score (WERS)® Verifier course, occurring June 5th through the 7th, provides in-depth and practical experience in performing residential water assessments for new and existing residential properties. This class is required to become a WERS Verifier. The WERS Consultant course, held concurrently on June 5th and 6th, is also being offered and plumbers, builders, irrigation professionals and water reuse professionals are eligible to attend this professional designation course.

Greywater Basics, scheduled for June 24th and 25th, will cover how to build and maintain a Greywater system and includes a field trip to view a working system. This course is intended for both plumbers and homeowners.

The Hotel Audit class will also be instructed by Bill Hoffman and will follow the Restaurant Audit class. It will focus on appliances and water-features not included in the restaurant workshop (e.g. cooling towers, laundry facilities, swimming pools and spas, etc.). This class will be held June 11th.

The Qualified Water Efficient Landscaper (QWEL) professional certification provides landscape professionals and others education on local water supply, sustainable landscaping, soils, landscape water budgets, irrigation system components and maintenance, irrigation system audits, and scheduling and controller programming. An audit and an exam is included in this class. This class is scheduled for June 17th – 21st. 

“Water workshops and water certification courses are part of the Next Generation Water Summit every year, and this year we have the broadest array of workshops we have ever had,” stated Doug Pushard, co-chair of this year’s Summit. The ability to earn valuable Continuing Education Credits or new water certifications is an important part of the mission of the NGWS.

Detailed information about these workshops can be found at:

Hosts of the Next Generation Water Summit will be the Santa Fe Green Chamber of Commerce; Green Builder® Coalition; City of Santa Fe; the Alliance for Water Efficiency, KUELWater, and the Santa Fe Area Home Builders Association. Santa Fe Community College is the official education sponsor, and Green Builder® Media is the national media partner.

About the Next Generation Water Summit
The Next Generation Water Summit brings together the building and development community, water reuse professionals and water policymakers in a collaborative setting to share best practices and learn about innovative water conservation and water reuse techniques that can be used to comply with water conservation restrictions spreading across the southwest.

Member News

Santa Fe Area Home Builders Association Takes Top Honors at Best in Green Awards

The Santa Fe Area Home Builders Association (SFAHBA) received a prestigious, national award at the recent International Builders’ Show in Las Vegas, Nevada last month. The recognition by the National Association of Home Builders was part of its annual Best in Green competition. SFAHBA won Best in Green in the category of Best Local Home Builder Association.

SFAHBA logo“To be recognized at this level truly demonstrates the dedication Santa Fe Area Home Builders have for designing and constructing energy-efficient, sustainable, green homes,” says Katherine Crociata, SFAHBA Executive Officer.

The citation for the award reads: “The Santa Fe Area Home Builders Association has a long-standing record in promoting green building. They developed the Water Efficiency Rating Score (WERS), a predictive calculation tool. This index will not only help builders know more about their water use, but will also help governing bodies to make permitting decisions and homeowners obtain their dream house.”

Santa Fe’s WERS tool – which has taken the name “Water Rating Index” for use within the National Green Building Standard (NGBS) – was recently approved for inclusion in the 2020 NGBS where it will serve as a performance path compliance option and also as a stand-alone appendix that jurisdictions can adopt to help calculate and predict how much water new residential properties will consume. The Standard is expected to be published later this year.

Kim Shanahan accepts the Best in Green award for SFAHBABrandon Snoy, President of the Association, said, “This is a tremendous honor for SFAHBA. We have long sought to get the issues builders face in the arid West in front of our national leadership, especially as we deal with the effects of climate change and long-term drought conditions in our region. This award helps validate our efforts.”

Kim Shanahan (center), Santa Fe Area Home Builders Association’s former Executive Director and Board member of the Green Builder Coalition, was on hand to accept the award on behalf of SFAHBA.

Congratulations are also in order for the Home Builders Association of Metro Portland (OR), who was the co-recipient of the Best Local Home Builder Association.

“In addition to the best in green building and remodeling projects, we were pleased to be able to recognize the great work our members are doing in their local communities to support sustainable living,” noted Ray Tonjes, NAHB’s 2018 Sustainability & Green Building Subcommittee Chairman and former Coalition Member. “Both the Santa Fe Area HBA and the HBA or Metro Portland had such active and impactful voices in their local green building markets in very different ways, that the judges thought two awards should be given this year.”

For more information on the SFAHBA, please visit


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