STEP 2. CHOOSE CERTIFICATION SYSTEM
Determine whether the project will pursue green building certification through LEED or an alternative third-party rating system. Consider the following when choosing a certification strategy:
• Approved non-LEED rating systems must include review by an IAF-accredited third-party certifier, to the standards listed in the prerequisite requirements. Rating systems that have third-party accreditation in alignment with the IAF standards listed, but not accredited by those specific standards, should seek additional guidance before the review process.
• If the local government has requirements for using a particular approved green building certification system, investigate whether the same certification system would be eligible for LEED ND.
• Even if the local regulations require a different rating system, teams may wish to pursue LEED certification for this credit to maintain consistency in third-party certification across the LEED ND application. Additionally, single-building projects will automatically be awarded points for their location in a LEED ND neighborhood, which may further streamline documentation.
• See Further Explanation, Using Non-LEED Green Building Rating Systems
Further Explanation> USING NON-LEED GREEN BUILDING RATING SYSTEMS
Non-LEED green building rating systems should be comprehensive in nature encompassing multiple categories of evaluation, documentation for evaluation methodology and stated rating system outcomes . The certification entities of any green building rating system used to demonstrate prerequisite compliance must have a documented quality system that covers aligns with the following elements of ISO/IEC Guide 65 or 17065:
• Initial and continuing training of personnel
• Periodic (usually annual) assessment of staff performance
• Confidentiality controls
• Conflict-of-interest statement
• Organizational chart
• Roles and responsibilities and/or job descriptions
• Document control
• Internal audit
• Management review
• Financial stability
Projects that align with the elements of ISO/IEC Guide 65 or 17065, but that are not accredited by the standard may still be eligible. In these instances, projects should submit a narrative describing how the rating system meets the ISO/IEC Guide 65 or 17065 standards. Consult the full text of either standard for additional information. This requirement applies to both U.S. and non- U.S. projects.