New compliance paths for European project teams for LEED v4 BD+C

Mandy Lee

In advance of Greenbuild Europe, we are excited to release new regional solutions for LEED v4 Building Design and Construction (BD+C) projects in Europe. With more than 70 percent of LEED projects in Europe using BD+C, including those already certified and those currently pursuing certification, new construction represents the largest share of regional projects and an opportunity to transform and accelerate green building practices.

LEED tailored to European needs

Europe plays an important role in the future of the entire green building movement, as one of the world’s greenest markets, and it is poised for greater adoption of LEED v4. Over the next year, USGBC will continue working closely with European stakeholders to provide regional solutions across all rating systems and within LEED v4.1.

In tailoring our system to better fit different contexts around the globe, USGBC allows LEED to become more flexible and applicable to a wider range of projects. In particular, alternative compliance paths (ACPs) provide additional options or approaches to LEED credits that address unique project needs, regional variation and advancements in science, technology and global standards. Our expanded set of European ACPs recognize and reward European norms and best practices within the structure of the LEED rating systems.

This year, five new ACPs were developed for LEED users in Europe. Together with the consultants of ES EnviroSustain GmbH in Berlin, Germany, USGBC managed the development process for the following ACPs and guidance. Various stakeholders, including LEED technical committees, national green building councils and members of the LEED International Roundtable contributed to these technical solutions.

Summary of New Europe ACPs for LEED v4 BD+C

LT Credit Reduced Parking Footprint: Preferred parking for carpools may be substituted by shared-use vehicles or a discounted parking rate.

LT Credit Bicycle Facilities: Projects in historic urban contexts can be exempted from the requirements on the bike path width. Compensating measures need to be provided for review teams.

EA Prerequisite Minimum Energy Performance, EA Credit Optimize Energy Performance: Certain European standards are accepted to replace requirements of the ASHRAE 90.1–2010 Mandatory Provisions.

MR Credit Building Life Cycle Impact Reduction: EN standard 15978 may be applied as a framework for the Life Cycle Assessment by European project teams.

EQ Prerequisite Minimum Indoor Air Quality Performance: For natural ventilations concepts, a standardized narrative process can be applied to document credit compliance instead of using the ASHRAE Standard 62.1–2010 procedures.

In addition to the ACPs, new guidance is available to address implementation barriers for LEED v4 Environmental Quality credit Acoustic Performance and Water Efficiency prerequisite Indoor Water Use Reduction for all global project teams.

Ongoing guidance on ACPs

USGBC has published a guide to Europe ACPs for LEED v4 BD+C, including excerpted LEED credit requirements, new compliance paths and implementation guidance. For more about the associated LEED credits and prerequisites, and any updates to ACPs over time, please visit the online LEED credit library. To get an insider look, attend one of the upcoming Meet the Experts: LEED ACPs for Europe presentations at Greenbuild Europe on April 17 and 18.

The LEED BD+C ACPs previously published for Europe (five for LEED 2009; four for LEED v4) were early steps toward providing new pathways for projects in Europe to demonstrate compliance with LEED. In addition to the new ACPs and guidance for LEED v4 BD+C, international standards and regional solutions will be added or updated wherever appropriate in LEED v4.1. USGBC has also opened a call for proposals for LEED v4.1 until May 31, giving you the chance to share your ideas about what LEED should be in the region.

The green building movement offers an unprecedented opportunity to respond to the most important challenges of our time, and the work of innovative building professionals is a fundamental driving force for the evolution and localization of LEED. Beginning in 2018, regional technical development of the rating system will continue under the purview of the Regional LEED Steering Committees for Europe and five other global regions, in collaboration with USGBC staff.

Download the guide to ACPs

Accessibility Tools