How Can CCI Help Our Clients With LEED?

The projects design team is responsible for submitting a project to the USGBC for LEED certification (you wouldn’t do this on your own). A LEED accredited design professional (a title conferred by the USGBC on designers who pay the fee , take the classes and pass the exam) submits and tracks the project in a much prescribed fashion for LEED
certification. The documentation is significant and subject to audit by the USGBC.

Eachlevel of LEED Certification requires a certain number of points to be achieved. The categories include: Sustainable Sites; Water Efficiency; Materials and Resources; Energy and Atmosphere; and Indoor Environmental Quality. The categories we play in are Energy and Atmosphere (17pts) and Indoor Environmental Quality(15pts). The set two categories account for a total of 32points, or nearly half of the total available and almost all of the points needed for the Silver!

Items we can help with and their potential point value:

  • Energy conservation strategies can earn up to 15 points.
  • Indoor Air Quality, CO2 control earns 1 point.
  • “Install a permanent CO2 monitoring system that provides feedback on space ventilation performance in a form that afford so operational adjustments.”
  • Thermal comfort,meeting ASHRAE55-1992 earns a pointand providing a permanent monitoring system earns another. “Install a permanent temperature and humidity monitoring system configured to provide operators control over thermal comfort performance…”
  • Controllability of Systems earns a point for perimeter zones (within15’ of exterior walls).“Provide at least an average of one operable window and one lighting control zone per 200 sq.ft.” Providing individual set point and lighting control earns a point(think Virtual Thermostats). “Provide controls for each individual for airflow, temperature and lighting for at least 50% of the occupants in non-perimeter, regularly occupied areas.”
  • Commissioning is a prerequisite and earns 1 point. Advanced commissioning by an independent 3rd party can earn an additional point. In both cases, our ability to generate commissioning reports is extremely helpful. Trend logs ,custom reports showing calibration and commissioning notes can be used as documentation (in part) for this requirement.
  • Measurement and Verification earns another point. “Provide for the ongoing accountability and optimization of building energy and water consumption performance over time.”
  • Up to 4 more points are available for “Innovation and Design.” These are not specific to one category (e.g.Energy and Atmosphere). They can be used for unique projects and innovative green design.

The LEED program we are typically involved with is designed for New Construction Projects (LEED-NC). There is a growing list of LEED programs including Existing Building, Commercial Interiors,and Core and Shell.The points are different for each type of program,but the central concept is the same.

After you wade through all of the “fluff,” the one statistic that jumped out at me from the
LEED material was this:92%of the life-cycle cost of a building is salaries. Healthier indoor
environments improve productivity and reduce absenteeism and turnover. If our systems
and services can boost productivity (by improving comfort, reducing absenteeism and
turnover),byeven1%, the resultant savings would be more than the total energy bill!