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What is LEED?

Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) is a rating system for green building developed by the United States Green Building Council (USGBC). Since 1998, LEED has rated more than 14,000 projects in all 50 states as well as 30 countries around the world, covering 1.062 billion square feet (99 km²) of development area.[1]

Green building refers to the design, construction and operation of buildings in an environmentally friendly way. LEED promotes a whole-building approach to sustainability by recognizing performance in five key areas of human and environmental health: sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection, and indoor environmental quality.

The rating system is specific to the type of project that is in review. These specific programs include LEED – New Construction, LEED – Existing Buildings, LEED – Commercial Interiors, LEED – Core and Shell, LEED – Homes, LEED – Neighborhood Development and LEED – Schools.

Projects can earn points for each type of credit included in the rating system and earn LEED certification at the following levels:

  • Certified (entry level)
  • Silver
  • Gold
  • Platinum (highest level)

For more information, check out the USGBC website.

[1]”Green Building By the Numbers“. USGBC. Retrieved 2008-12-01.

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