USGBC Membership Shrinks 10%

I track a number of various USGBC email updates both for the information they provide and the statistics that they post in the title bar. Today I noticed something interesting in the latest USGBC Update... to the best of my knowledge (based on these emails and past presentations from the USGBC), the "members" figure has decreased for the first time in the history of the organization!

USGBC membership decline

USGBC Update received 02.22.10 - Member Update Received 01.14.10

The USGBC had been reporting at 20,000 member figure since at least October 2009, and LEED AP figures have risen about steadily over that same period. I'm curious to know whether this is simply a sign of the economic woes facing all membership organizations or more serious problem where companies are deciding that membership costs outweigh the benefits of being included in the USGBC. I've noticed that at the (member) firm I work at, the substantial discounts we receive for LEED registration and certification fees are passed directly to our clients, so in essence we're keeping their costs lower while increasing ours...

Has your company recently left the fold? Tell us why by leaving a comment!

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Our membership has expired due to economic reasons.

Amy said...

I've tried to renew our membership twice now for 2010. But the website keeps crashing and when i call they say they can't help me over the phone because they are having technical problems.
I plan on trying until it works but I imagine not everyone is willing to waste their time.

TroyAdkins said...

Hi Amy and other USGBC members.

I’m Director of Membership at USGBC and I apologize for the renewal problems you had on our site. I want to provide you and other posters here with my contact information. I’m happy to help with any questions you have.

Troy Adkins
Director, Membership
tadkins@usgbc.org
Direct: 202-390-7719

I look forward to hearing from you.

Amy said...

Hi Troy,
I made another attempt this morning and it worked out. There was some delay in loading but it went smoothly once the membership page loaded.

Thanks for responding. I do appreciate that you were willing to make your direct line available.

Thanks

dave said...

Joel, if your company is paying the registration & certification fees on projects and then billing the client, you can treat it as a reimbursable (just like blueprints and travel costs), which most companies have a multiplier for in their contracts, generally in the neighborhood of 10%. It's still considerably less than they would pay without the value (i.e. discount) that your firm's membership provides.

bruteforcecollaborative said...

Is this shrinking a lack of interest due to the shortcomings of LEED as everyone jumps on the passivhaus bandwagon?

Nathan said...

Brute, don't get me wrong, I love Passivehaus, but I don't see much "bandwagon jumping." Around here (Seattle) I don't know of any commercial buildings going Passivehaus, but LEED is still chugging along, shortcomings and all.

Christine said...

I think it's the economy and acquisitions and mergers. We have recently merged numerous companies, resulting in only one USGBC membership now.

Anonymous said...

I can understand the reason for the decline being related to the economy, but... I can't help but notice the expense my company has put forth to help the projects we are working get Leed Certification. Add up all the time it takes to get CLEAR answers and CLEAR requests from our customers, compare those with other projects, research what applies to us, fill out our forms, the customer's forms, forms from the owner, and I would bet we are at about 10% of our time out of the total project. Forget the paperwork involved. But as a truss manufacturer, (which doesn't account for much of anything in the way of LEED credits) it is costing us greatly. There is also a question about what "Regional materials" are? One definition is: products that are harvested, extracted, and manufactured within 500 miles of the project site. In Texas, there are NO STEEL mills, and TEXAS is a big state. How can any project qualify. By putting mills, manufacturing plants, and sales offices in EVERY town? Can anyone interested in hugging a tree say "CARBON FOOT PRINT".

collier1960 said...

Our A&E office became a USGBC member firm late last year and are looking for our first LEED based project. Currently I am the firm's only LEED AP (and the only Registered Architect) but we've had some great training.