RELi

Resilient design for a changing world

RELi is a rating system and leadership standard that takes a holistic approach to resilient design. It is used by companies, developers, city planners, architects, bond insurers and more to assess and plan for all of the acute hazards that buildings and communities can face during unplanned events, prepare to mitigate against these hazards and design and construct buildings to maintain critical life-saving services in the event of extended loss of power, heating fuel or water.

Around the world, governments, businesses, private developers and city planners and officials are spearheading a growing movement to make structures in vulnerable communities more resilient through improved preventative action. The increasing frequency of dramatic weather events has brought an even greater urgency to create buildings and communities that are better adapted to a changing climate and better able to bounce back from disturbances and interruptions.

Resilience is more than physically withstanding major natural disasters – it is a crucial factor in how we survive weather extremes, economic disruption and resource depletion. Ultimately, it is about a community’s ability to come together in the aftermath of an extreme event. The ability of a community to bounce back ultimately benefits everyone. Green buildings are one of the best ways companies and communities can future proof, support climate action, improve quality of life and make an immediate impact.

Sustainable buildings are the cornerstone to enhancing community resilience. They are driving resilience-enhancing designs, technologies, materials and methods. To support these efforts, green buildings must incorporate practices such as the use of durable materials, thoughtful site selection, rainwater collection, demand response, grid islanding, maximal energy efficiency, on-site renewable energy generation and more. All of these strategies are explored, exemplified, and measured by the RELi rating system. 

Administered by GBCI, RELi’s comprehensive approach lays the groundwork for resilient, regenerative and healthy outcomes that support quality of life. The rating system includes more than 50 requirements and credits throughout 8 categories, including panoramic design; hazard preparedness and adaptation; community vitality; productivity, health and diversity; energy, water and food; materials and artifacts; and applied creativity.

Certification

In order to earn RELi certification, projects must earn prerequisites and credits across the RELi Rating System.

View the RELi 2.0 Rating Guidelines for Resilient Design and Construction

The number of points that a project earns determines the certification level it receives.

Certification Level Points
RELi Certified 300-349 points earned
RELi Silver 350-449 points earned
RELi Gold 450-599 points earned
RELi Platinum 600+ points earned


RELi pilot registration is now open for new construction projects that want to design for resiliency and incorporate cutting edge resiliency practices and strategies into the design and construction of their buildings. In order to pursue RELi pilot certification, projects must also register for LEED certification. The dual submittal is efficient given the nearly 25% overlap of LEED credits in RELi. Contact the RELi team to register your project for certification.

  Silver, Gold, and Platinum Level USGBC Members Organizational or Non-Members
Registration $1,200 $1,500
Certification Contact GBCI Contact GBCI


Registration fees must be paid at the time of registration. Certification fees are calculated on a per-project basis; please reach out to us at [email protected] for a quote.

Guide to RELi Certification

The RELi Certification Guide outlining the certification process can be downloaded here. If you are looking for more information about the necessary requirements and credits, you can also download the RELi Rating System for free. To download the RELI Certification Guide, contact us at [email protected].

RELi was developed to elevate the importance of resilient design in communities, buildings and infrastructure. RELi can help identify and reduce the risk of damage to projects in the event of a natural disaster or other crisis. RELi assumes local and/or national emergency response within approximately four days after the occurrence of a major event. The RELi Rating System is not intended to provide design guidelines for indefinite project operation.    

Download the Guide to RELi Certification

RELi and LEED

The RELi rating system is a comprehensive, integrated system and its foundation includes the work of LEED, ASHRAE, Fortified, Envision and REDi. In response to the demand for more resilient buildings and communities, RELi was developed by the Institute for Market Transformation to Sustainability in 2012. In 2017, USGBC, a long-time advocate of resilient design and developer of the LEED Resilience Pilot Credits, announced its formal adoption and revision of RELi. USGBC convened a RELi Steering Committee in 2018, which formalized the next version of the rating system, RELi 2.0. GBCI administers RELi and provides the review and certification for all RELi projects.

RELi and LEED complement and overlap with each other. LEED credits and requirements count toward partial or complete fulfillment of six RELi requirements and earn approximately 20 percent of the points toward RELi certification. Projects seeking to be recognized for innovative design above and beyond RELi may take advantage of the LEED Pilot Credits while applying for LEED certification. The Resilience Pilot Credits have been harmonized with RELi, further closing the gap between today’s need for resilience and tomorrow’s need for sustainability.