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Costa Rica to host third International Sustainable Building Congress

Sustainable cities, green building, public space and renewable energy are a few of the themes to be explored at the third International Sustainable Building Congress this month in Costa Rica. The event, whose theme is “Building Sustainable Cities and Lifestyles in Latin America and the Caribbean,” is an unprecedented collaboration among the World Resources Forum, the United Nations Environment Programme and the Green Building Council-Costa Rica.

The conference runs from May 17-20 at the Wyndham Hotel San José-Herradura, and will include dozens of workshops, high-level speakers from around the world and chances for networking on everything from green urban planning to sustainable recycling systems.

Fun evening events are also planned, including a visit to Barrio Escalante’s Paseo de la Luz gastro district and a “green drinks” cocktail party.There will also be a “green cinema” screening sustainability-themed films throughout the event.

Attached to the event, the Green Expo will showcase products and services in the realm of environmentally-friendly construction.

Ana Quirós, head of the Green Building Council-Costa Rica, said the conference is designed to promote the exchange of ideas among policymakers, students, entrepreneurs, researchers and everyday citizens about how to make cities function better for their inhabitants.

“Sustainable cities are livable cities,” Quirós said. What, exactly, that means, she said, depends on what citizens want from their cities.

This is the third Sustainable Building Congress organized by the Green Building Council-Costa Rica, but the first with such high-level partners as the U.N. and the non-profit World Resources Forum. Part of the conference will focus on generating proposals from Latin America for the upcoming U.N. Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development, or Habitat III, to be held in Quito, Ecuador in October.

Quirós said organizers are expecting 300-400 people from some 40 countries at the Sustainable Building Congress. The registration fee for the entire conference is $500 but students get a deep discount.

Entrance to the Green Expo is free.

For more information, visit the event website.

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