The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) announced that LEED v4, the newest version of the LEED green building program, launched Nov. 20 at the annual Greenbuild International Conference and Expo in Philadelphia.
LEED has revolutionized the marketplace since 1998 as the world’s premier benchmark for the design, construction and operation of high-performance green buildings. LEED v4 builds on the fundamentals of previous versions while offering a new system that prepares all LEED projects in a portfolio to perform at a higher level.
“LEED v4 is a quantum leap for LEED,” said Rick Fedrizzi, president, CEO and founding chair, USGBC. “Over the past 15 years, LEED has fundamentally revolutionized how we design, construct, operate and maintain our buildings and communities. LEED has created a completely new industry of business enterprise committed to energy savings and efficiency. LEED v4 is as much a testament to the achievements of LEED project teams around the world as it is to the green building community’s ambition to create significant global and local change through resource-efficient, cost-effective green buildings.”
LEED v4 encourages and accelerates global adoption of sustainable green building and development practices through the creation and implementation of universally understood and accepted tools and performance criteria. Already, 122 beta projects from around the world are using LEED v4.
Highlights of LEED v4 include:
• New market sectors: New market sector adaptations for LEED include data centers, warehouses and distribution centers, hospitality, existing schools, existing retail and mid-rise residential projects.
• Time saving support tools and resources: Simplified LEED credit submittal requirements, descriptive step-by-step reference guide materials with videos and tutorials, and a more intuitive technology platform.
• Building performance management: LEED v4 is focused on outcomes so that building owners have a better understanding of how to manage their buildings to meet full performance potential.
• New impact categories: Climate change, human health, water resources, biodiversity, green economy, community and natural resources.
“LEED v4, at its core, provides insight into the synergies within the building system, providing solutions for optimizing performance, and ultimately achieving better environmental, economic and social outcomes in our buildings,” said Scot Horst, senior vice president of LEED, USGBC. “LEED v4 is the LEED of the future, where we challenge the marketplace to go further, to make the next great leap toward better, cleaner, healthier buildings where people live and work.”
The first LEED v4 project certifications were recognized at Greenbuild this week: the Haworth Beijing Organic Showroom achieved LEED v4 Gold. Located in Beijing, China, this project certified its commercial interior space. The project is owned by Haworth, and the LEED process was administered by Bisagni Environmental Enterprise (BEE). 1800 K St. in Washington, D.C., was awarded LEED v4 Silver. This project was certified as an existing building and is owned by Deutsche Asset & Wealth Management and administered by Transwestern. Additionally, three core and shell projects earned LEED precertification: University Place in Philadelphia, 10 Emery St. in Bethlehem, Pa., and Capitol Tower Complex.