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LEED-ing the Way to a More Sustainable Future

The Principal Child Development Center earns Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Gold certification

April 22, 2009 (Des Moines, IA) — Cork flooring. Ceiling tiles made of sunflower seeds. Desks made of recycled paper. These necessary elements helped The Principal Child Development Center earn its LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.

The on-site center offers early learning and childcare services to employees of the Principal Financial Group®. The center serves up to 180 children, age six weeks to preschool age.

"After many months of planning, design and construction, LEED certification validates our commitment to environmentally sustainable projects," said Jed Fisk, vice president, Corporate Services at The Principal®. "One of the first LEED-certified buildings in downtown Des Moines, The Principal Child Development Center is a landmark not only for our corporate campus, but for the city."

Thinking Green

LEED Certification provides an independent, third-party verification that a building project meets the highest green building and performance measures. Gold certification is the second-highest ranking of four levels.

LEED-certified buildings must demonstrate commitment to social responsibility by conserving energy and water, reducing greenhouse emissions, and reducing waste sent to landfills.

The ABC's of Environmental Responsibility

The year-round curriculum used at The Principal Child Development Center teaches children why it's important to protect the environment and what they can do to help by including a ‘going green' activity in weekly lesson plans.

"As young children find their place in the world, it's important to understand how their choices impact the environment. Learning early how they can make a difference, at school and home, starts here," said Fisk.

As part of Earth Month 2009, students participated in week-long lessons and environmental activities about recycling, saving energy, protecting nature and what happens to garbage.

About LEED®

The LEED® (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Green Building Rating System™ is a feature-oriented rating system that awards buildings points for satisfying specified green building criteria. The six major environmental categories of review include: Sustainable Sites, Water Efficiency, Energy and Atmosphere, Materials and Resources, Indoor Environmental Quality and Innovation and Design. Certified, Silver, Gold, and Platinum levels of LEED green building certification are awarded based on the total number of points earned within each LEED category. For more information, visit

About the Principal Financial Group

The Principal Financial Group® (The Principal®)[1] is a leader in offering businesses, individuals and institutional clients a wide range of financial products and services, including retirement and investment services, life and health insurance, and banking through its diverse family of financial services companies. A member of the Fortune 500, the Principal Financial Group has $247.0 billion in assets under management[2] and serves some 19.1 million customers worldwide from offices in Asia, Australia, Europe, Latin America and the United States. Principal Financial Group, Inc. is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol PFG. For more information, visit

"The Principal Financial Group" and "The Principal" are registered service marks of Principal Financial Services, Inc., a member of the Principal Financial Group.
As of December 31, 2008

Call 515.246.4907 or see the full Media Relations contact list.

Call 515.246.4907 or see the full Media Relations contact list.

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