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Come spring, USGBC will ballot updates to Optimize Energy Performance and Minimum Energy Performance in v4 BD+C and ID+C. Now is your chance to offer feedback on the draft language.

by Paula Melton

NOTE: We closed comments on this post because the public comment period ended January 13, 2023.

The shift in existing building decarbonization under LEED v5 could be a complete 180 from what happened in v4.

by Paula Melton

I’m just home from Greenbuild 2022 in San Francisco. I’ve never felt such a palpable sense of urgency—some might say rising panic—at Greenbuild regarding the scale of the challenges before us as an industry when it comes to decarbonization, social justice, and climate adaptation.

The same third-party certifier, GBCI, already reviews LEED and WELL submittals. So why isn’t dual certification more streamlined? The governing orgs tacitly answer that question with an update.

by Paula Melton

Everyone loves a crosswalk. It can help you get safely across tricky territory. But sometimes you have to ask … why is this territory so tricky in the first place?

USGBC is moving forward on next phase of LEED, with a public comment draft expected next year. Where will it take us on equity, resilience, and more?

by Paula Melton

LEED v5 development is ramping up, and the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) is going to need your help to make it happen.

USGBC is planning stringency boosts for Minimum Energy Performance and Optimize Energy Performance under LEED v4 BD+C and ID+C—and it’s different this time.

by Paula Melton

“LEED projects have a very long tail,” said a U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) official, explaining why the organization will be introducing greater stringency for energy performance prerequisites and credits under LEED v4.

In other words, new construction projects registering today likely won’t get built for a long time and will continue to “exist for many years” after the current version of the rating system has closed. That’s according to Corey Enck, vice president for LEED technical development, who was speaking at a Greenbuild San Francisco session on the future of LEED.

With Peter Templeton staying on at USGBC and GBCI, an exciting new framework is on the horizon.

by Paula Melton

We’ve known for a long time that the LEED rating systems, though they’ve had a tremendous impact on the global building industry, can’t move the needle fast enough to prevent the most catastrophic climate change impacts.

Sure, you can check the boxes and move on, but do you even know what those product certifications and ecolabels say and mean?

by Paula Melton

Part of the point of LEED certification is that it should incentivize all the right things. No need to second-guess the requirements: just fulfill those requirements and hang the plaque.

There was a lot of pilot credit shifting in the most recent addenda release, so check before you start counting points.

by Sarah Buffaloe

This quarter’s LEED Addenda were released on Monday, August 1. Outside minor corrections to rating system and reference guide language, here are a few highlights.

Advanced Energy Metering is an overlooked opportunity for CI projects. It’s not that difficult, and it saves tenants money in the long run.

by Sarah Buffaloe

You are running a LEED for Commercial Interiors charette, you are deep into the scorecard, and the Advanced Energy Metering credit comes up. At first glance, it’s easy—just install meters—but then you dig in deeper. Many questions now arise:

Carbon and social issues dominated a recent presentation about the future of LEED—and there’s talk of partial certification.

by Sarah Buffaloe

Last week during a USGBC Live event in Washington, D.C., we got a glimpse of what the technical development staff and LEED Steering Committee are thinking about for the future of LEED. You can gain your own insights from the recently published presentation found at USGBC.org

Several things seem clear.

Need tips on demonstrating high performance? Infosys hit LEED Platinum with its new HQ, due in part to great IAQ.

by Paula Melton

Project: Infosys Indianapolis Technology and Innovation Hub

Size: 160,585 ft2

Owner: Infosys

Owner’s Representative (Sustainability): Point Energy Innovations

Architect, LEED Manager (Design), and Landscape Architect: Browning Day

MEP Engineer: Ross & Baruzzini

Structural Engineer: Fink, Roberts & Petrie

Construction Manager: Browning Investments

LEED Manager (Construction): Bravo MCC

Civil Engineer: Cripe Architects & Engineers

Commissioning Authority: Heapy Engineering

Existing building projects must choose between v4 and v4.1. Unlike with the design and construction rating systems, one-off credit substitutions are not allowed.

by Trista Brown

In this blog post, we provide a rundown of the v4.1 credits to help you navigate the opportunities and drawbacks to pursuing v4.1 compared to v4. Remember: for Operations and Maintenance (O+M) projects, teams must choose between the entire v4 and v4.1 rating systems.

With Pilot Credit 158, the carbon sequestration value of trees helps teams earn a point.

by Sarah Buffaloe

Does LEED encourage planting trees? It’s a strange question to be asking 23 years into the rating system. Sure, we know trees are good; they provide shade and wildlife habitats, stabilize soils, and create oxygen, but there is no LEED credit that simply encourages design teams to plant more trees—until now.

Google’s first brick-and-mortar store achieved LEED v4 Platinum under ID+C.

by Paula Melton

Project: Google Store–Chelsea tenant fit-out

Size: 8,900 ft2

Owner: Google

Architect: REDDYMADE Architecture + Design

MEP Engineer: Rosini Engineering

Contractor: Michilli Construction + Consulting

New York’s energy grading system is up and running, and it’s fueling LEED bashing. Are the critics right?

by Paula Melton

At 7 Bryant Park in New York City, a plaque from 2016 proudly displays a rating of LEED 2009 Gold. To its left is the building’s current “energy grade,” whose display is required by a recently enacted NYC law. For actual energy use, the building gets a C—an Energy Star score of 60, which means it’s only slightly above average. What gives?