LEED projects over other rating systems.
In addition, the name recognition and marketability of LEED can translate to higher
sale prices or rents.
But LEED can be confusing, it changes
frequently, and some find it hard to navigate. There is a growing concern in the construction industry that its politics ignore
relevant building standards and materials. A proposal to ban use of LEEDv4 in
public construction recently passed the
Ohio Senate. Similar legislation was proposed in Mississippi, while LEED is already
restricted in government projects in Maine,
Georgia, and Alabama.
LEED is also pricey, requiring an admin-
For better performance
istrative fee (based on project square foot-
age), a LEED-accredited documentation
expert, research and design, commission-
ing, and modeling for compliance—and
that’s in addition to build costs. So if money
is your motivation, you must weigh those
costs against the benefits noted above and
any operational savings.
If reducing energy use is your motivation, the EnergyStar building rating
system requires no fee and provides measurable parameters to design and build for
reduced energy use. Developed by the EPA
for homes and commercial and industrial
buildings, EnergyStar is a national program
that offers a user-friendly, affordable building certification system.
Buildings achieving an EnergyStar rating may qualify for national and state tax
incentives, rebates, tax-exempt equipment
lease purchase offers, and IRS deductions.
Certification is renewed annually by a
third-party professional engineer or reg-
istered architect, so building owners are
motivated to sustain energy conservation.
LEED’s new v4 includes its own recertifica-
tion program that uses EnergyStar’s system
to track building data.
The Green Building Institute (GBI) offers
the Green Globes certification system.
Accredited under the American National
Standards Institute (ANSI), this online
system awards ratings, documents sustainability achievements, and offers recommendations for improvement.
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Here’s a few hints...
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can bring subtle
plaques grace a
number of retail
including this one
at the headquarters
of Levi Strauss & Co.
in San Francisco.