Friday, March 30, 2018

USGBC Introduces LEED v4.1

LEED v4.1

This month, the United States Green Building Council (USGBC) unveiled LEED v4.1 - an update to its LEED rating system. The update provides more opportunities for new and existing projects to earn LEED certification by changing its scoring system and streamlining its requirements.

One of the biggest changes is the new scoring system: LEED v4.1 gives more consideration to credit requirements that are directly measurable. For example, the Water Efficiency category increased in overall points while the Regional Priority category decreased in overall points. Now, 90 of the 100 possible points for LEED certification are awarded to credits that have a calculated performance score - based on actual data from the project. Realtime data is a facilitated through the incorporation of Arc, a platform for LEED associates that tracks building performance over time.

Credit requirements are also more streamlined. Some credits have been totally removed, while others have been umbrellaed under a broader credit. More flexible credit requirements mean that more projects can get LEED certification. One example is the broadened Water Efficiency category, where projects will receive more credit for water performance overall versus installing the latest low-flow pipes or cooling tower. This is important for existing projects and international projects, where alternative solutions are often seen but were not explicitly credited in previous LEED scoring systems.

Another interesting feature is LEED certification for spaces within buildings. This is another effort from USGBC to consider non-traditional markets and allow LEED certification for more projects.

With these changes, LEED v4.1 is poised to be a bigger, better and more inclusive update to one of the most widely used building performance rating systems in the world. As USGBC pushes to be a global force in sustainability, we're excited to see what new projects can be developed under LEED v4.1.

To learn more about LEED v4.1, visit USGBC. To learn more about LEED certification and how to get involved in this dynamic field, visit Zack Academy.

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