Our project is located in the west of Ireland. The project is a warehouse extension (a single LEED project) on an existing commercial campus, and the entire campus is the same owner/occupier. Part of the land on the campus is an EU designated Special Area of Conservation (SAC).
Special Areas of Conservation are prime wildlife conservation areas, considered to be important at national as well as at European level. SACs are selected and designated according to Council Directive 92/43/EEC on the Conservation of Natural Habitats and of Wild Fauna and Flora, commonly known as the Habitats Directive. This Directive was transposed into Irish law by the European Communities (Natural Habitats) Regulations 1997 – 2005 and the European Communities (Birds and Natural Habitats) Regulations 2011. Sites designated as SACs contribute to the preservation of endangered habitats or species as listed in Annex I (habitats) and Annex II (species) of the Directive.
The owner has demonstrated a long-term commitment to this area, and this area and its conservation is included in forward planning documents. For example, there is a commitment to raise the biodiversity index to triple the FY2005 level by FY2020.
The area of the SAC exceeds the LEED project site area. The SAC is adjacent to the LEED project, and has not been claimed for any other LEED project.
We would like to use an ACP to claim that area for the LEED project as off-site restoration. Does anyone have any experience or thoughts as to whether the EU regulation would be seen as equivalent to Land Trust Standards? The project owner has significant documentation to show studies and conservation work in the SAC. Related, would the extent of this conservation work make this credit a possibility for an Innovation credit?
Any advice appreciated!
Summer MinchewManaging Partner
141 thumbs up
August 29, 2017 - 10:41 am
Just to confirm, is your project a greenfield site (Case 1) or previously developed (Case 2)? If Case 2 are you attempting to meet "Projects with limited landscape opportunities may also donate offsite land in perpetuity, equal to 60% of the previously developed area (including the building footprint)"? You can earn exemplary performance under this credit option, LEED Interpretation 10370 details the requirements, "For the Case 2, offsite path added via addenda on 11/3/2010, projects may earn an Innovation in Design credit for exemplary performance by donating offsite land in perpetuity, equal to 90% of the previously developed area (including the building footprint), to a land trust within the same EPA Level III Ecoregion identified for the project site. The land trust must adhere to the Land Trust Alliance ‘Land Trust Standards and Practices’ 2004 Revision." As far as the SAC goes, include that information under Special Circumstances and provide as much information as possible to support your claim that the EU regulation is equivalent to land trust standards.
August 10, 2021 - 3:53 am
I'm just wondering if you were successful applying for these credits as i have a very similar project in the south of Ireland with a SAC on the campus. Did the land have to be donated?
In the case of my project there is a secondary possible route to the credit whereby the client is reconstructing a wetland nesting site in a nearby lagoon area under agreement with the local wildlife trusts and the local councils but the land will remain in the client's ownership. The client is paying for and undertaking the reconstruction work.