LEED certification

The LEED certification is the sustainable building certification used in America for different types of buildings at different stages. Depending on the number of points achieved, a project can get one of the four LEED rating levels and more buildings in a portfolio can be assessed, should they be similar in design, operations or delivery.

LEED certification critics


Lavaflow, Hawaii construction site

Many maintain that a LEED certification plaque is no guarantee that a building deserves accolades for good green design. Industry professionals commonly complain that the credit system unevenly recognizes energy use. For example, because each LEED credit is worth one point (out of a possible 69), it’s possible for a building to receive 26 points – enough for a plaque – without obtaining a single point for energy efficiency.
This is arguably the most important green building metric, and critics note that this loophole allows owners to slap a few green elements – from a green roof to preferred parking spaces for hybrid vehicles – on top of an otherwise conventional building in order to score easy LEED points.

Click here to read about the sustainability assessment method used in the UK, BREEAM.

Sustainability explained

Distinguishing between being good for the environment and "green wash"...

How should it be interpreted?

There is a need for a consumers’ guide to environmental...

Why is it important?

In many cases the materials that are used are fairly low down on the list of concerns..

Key Sustainability Terms

The following list of key sustainability terms used in the construction industry...