Plantronics, Inc., a widely known maker of BLUETOOTHÂ® headsets, apparently feels being first on the moon is not enough of a laurel to rest upon. Green cheese to green earth is the new benchmark, as Plantronic's new manufacturing and design center in Suzhou, China, has just earned the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) gold certification for environmental sustainability. Plantronics Suzhou is now the only manufacturing facility in all of China to have achieved LEED certification. For a full look at the LEED features at the Plantronics Suzhou site, see the corporate new release here. Note: Plantronics brands include, Altec Lansing, Clarity, and Volume Logic.We admit we should have seen this seminal development coming, but did not, in spite of all the obvious "future drivers" being right in front of us. With the government of China mandating significant energy efficiency boosts from the building sector, what better way for a US corporation to get acceptance from the Chinese authorities than to import best green building practices from the West? It may not be of the scale of former US President Nixon opening the door to improved relations, but it certainly indicates more positive changes to come.
According to the Wall Street Journal coverage of this , "For Plantronics to achieve "gold" LEED certification for its factory, it had to go beyond what was available locally. "A large measure of the building material was local, but some of the key pieces of equipment were imported," Mr. Walters, [senior vice president of operations] said". Importing construction materials to China to build a LEED certified factory and design center. We think that's pretty green. Hoping it's not all just an engineering thing, so designers can get a chance to show their talents in China.
Who's up next to ride the dragon?