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Mr. Brendan Owens introduced the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) and the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification system. The objective of the USGBC is to organize all those involved in the building industry into a progressive association that thinks critically about how it can make construction more sustainable. The USGBC established the LEED certification system in 2000, which is based on similar existing models of ‘Green Building’ verification, such as in the UK. LEED is based on a list of criteria for builders to use in order to reduce the carbon footprint of the building construction process in the U.S. LEED currently gives credit towards the certification of a building if certified wood is used in the process of construction, but the USGBC does not have a strict policy on the
use of illegal logs in the construction process. Brendan noted that the process of developing the criteria for certification in relation to the source of wood products is ongoing, and any change to this policy will be the result of consensus.