Choice of materials and certification systems for building products continues to be contentious issues in sustainable design. Earlier this year, members of Congress criticized the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) for proposed LEED standards that they say will discourage the use of certain synthetic materials and would harm the US timber industry. Georgia and Maine  have both dropped LEED on state projects over objections to USGBC’s approach to wood certification. The president of the Oregon Small Woodlands Association, which represents family woodland owners that manage small timber stands, added his voice to the debate recently. “The Green Building Council's standard is too narrow, granting credit only for wood certified by the Forest Stewardship Council,” writes Scott Hayes.
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