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December 21 ANSI Cities Network Webinar Features New U.S. Green Building Council LEED for Cities Program


On December 21, from 2:00 pm to 3:00 pm Eastern, the monthly webinar of the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) Network on Smart and Sustainable Cities (ANSSC) will feature a presentation on the new U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) for Cities program. The featured speaker will be Vatsal Bhatt, Ph.D., USGBC’s director of cities and neighborhood developments.

USGBC’s LEED for Cities uniquely provides urban decision-makers and citizens a program to score and compare the performance of urban systems, and a platform to manage and improve that incremental performance. LEED for Cities works with the city to set goals, and implement strategies and plans to support those goals. The city then shares performance data to measure and track progress toward those goals. In the process, cities improve performance and certify to LEED for Cities. LEED for Cities uses a flexible and scalable “arc” platform – a digital platform that enables a project to measure improvements and benchmark against itself and projects around it. The LEED for Cities performance score uses 14 metrics including: carbon, water, waste, transportation, education, prosperity, equitability, and health and safety. It can also accept and analyze data on 250 quantitative and qualitative parameters for more detailed evaluation. It leverages a wide range of rating systems, standards, protocols, and guidelines, offering enormous possibilities for cities to adapt them based on local conditions and priorities.

As a consultant to USGBC, Dr. Bhatt helped develop the concept for LEED for Cities and operationalize it. He also co-leads the Application Frameworks working group of the National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST) effort to develop an “Internet of Things–Enabled Smart Cities Framework.” In addition, he has been working as a senior energy policy analyst at the Brookhaven National Laboratory of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). In 2007 he established DOE’s U.S.-India-China Cities Partnership for sharing best practices and technologies and provided technical assistance to the governments of India and China and state and local governments on low-carbon urban growth strategies and eco-city planning and implementation. Dr. Bhatt has also done work with the U.S. Department of State, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the National Science Foundation, and numerous universities, foundations, and international governments. In August 2013 the Woodrow Wilson Center for Distinguished Scholars invited Dr. Bhatt to participate on a five-member panel to facilitate developing China’s “Energy-Water Roadmap.” He has developed energy-water-climate change systems modeling for national, regional, and urban analysis. He is also a lead author of the U.S. Global Change Research Program’s first-ever assessment of the “Effects of Climate Change on Energy Production and Use in the United States: Synthesis and Assessment Product 4.5.” He is an adjunct assistant professor at Stony Brook University and has been a guest lecturer at Columbia University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Georgetown University, the Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad, CEPT University, and others.

The ANSSC is a forum for information sharing on standardization developments for smart and sustainable cities in the U.S. and abroad. Participation in the network’s monthly webinars and valuable information sharing between webinars is a benefit of membership for ANSI full members. For more information, visit


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