LEED v4.1 For BD+C and ID+C Is Now Open for Registration

Posted On: 
Jan 29, 2019
LEED v4.1 For BD+C and ID+C Is Now Open for Registration

The USGBC has launched registration for both new construction projects as well as interior spaces with LEED v4.1 BD+C and LEED v4.1 ID+C. Focused on implementation, the USGBC states that LEED v4.1 is accessible, user-friendly and an agile tool. To participate, users can register LEED Online and review the LEED v4.1 Beta Guide.

In a previous blog, How LEED v4.1 Could Affect Building Product Manufacturers, we discussed several new opportunities, requirements, and revisions for the ratings system. On December 17, 2018, the USGBC released the LEED v4.1 BD+C beta draft. The USGBC has stated that LEED v4.1 will be the most inclusive and transparent platform to date.

“LEED v4.1 is set to raise the bar. It is the most comprehensive, collaborative, accessible and effective LEED system to date. From improving energy performance to emphasizing human health and integrative building design, LEED is encouraging project teams to operate beyond the status quo,” said Mahesh Ramanujam, president & CEO, USGBC.

The LEED v4.1 BD+C beta version updates referenced. The LEED v4.1 ID+C beta updates mirror BD+C while focusing on the realities LEED projects experience as they interact with their base building. The updated referenced standards allow projects to earn LEED points through building performance monitoring. Performance outcomes will be supported by a data-driven path so that LEED project teams can measure performance on an ongoing basis.

The USGBC has stated that there are four key goals that have guided their technical development process for the LEED v4.1 BD+C rating system: ensuring leadership, increasing achievability, measuring performance, and expanding the market. There are several significant revisions in LEED v4.1. Let’s examine a few . . .

LEED v4.1 Integrative Process

This credit has a more balanced approach for LEED project teams to comprehend, advance, and document the process and outcomes of integrated design through a new documentation approach of a project team letter. Project teams have greater flexibility to discuss the integrative process and earn more points for exemplary performance for social equity and public health.

LEED v4.1 Location and Transportation

There are several new changes for this LEED credit category. Reduced Parking Footprint recognizes variations in consumer behavior; preferred parking requirements are eliminated and several new credit options are introduced that reward LEED projects for no off-street parking, providing carshare parking, or unbundling parking. Green Vehicles has been renamed Electric Vehicles and the credit now refers to electric vehicles only. There is a new option rewarding the installation of electric vehicle infrastructure.

LEED v4.1 Sustainable Sites

The Sustainable Sites LEED category has seen a few revisions. The credit Protect or Restore Habitat is more accessible for LEED projects with a reduced restoration threshold, new soil and vegetation guidance, and lowered financial requirements. The Rainwater Management credit was very difficult for many project teams to achieve in LEED v4. The new requirements are more achievable and the credit features a reduced minimum percentile storm events and more guidance for zero- lot-line projects.

LEED v4.1 Water Efficiency

As the planet faces severe water issues, strides have been made to update the Water Efficiency category. Updates include: Indoor Water Use Reduction recognizes variations in standard supply pressure across the globe, the Cooling Tower and Process Water Use requirements are revised to be more achievable for LEED projects, and two new credit options incorporate a pilot credit and reward the use of alternative recycled water to meet process water demand.

LEED v4.1 Energy and Atmosphere

The referenced standard for energy performance is now updated to ASHRAE 90.1-2016. LEED projects are now required to demonstrate performance against two metrics: cost and greenhouse gas emissions. LEED credit Optimize Energy Performance includes a new prescriptive option for individual systems optimization in BD+C. The Renewable Energy credit combines the older Renewable Energy Production and Green Power and Carbon Offsets into a new credit.

LEED v4.1 Materials and Resources

The LEED MR Category saw many changes that should help project teams and building product manufacturers. New credit pathways and updated credit achievement thresholds are introduced for several credits, including Building Life-Cycle Impact Reduction and Building Product Disclosure and Optimization (BPDO) credits. Building product manufacturers who have verified Health Product Declarations (HPDs) will be rewarded with additional point contributions. In addition, the category revisions emphasize embodied carbon reductions through building reuse, salvage, whole building LCA, and EPDs.

LEED v4.1 Indoor Environmental Quality

The EQ Category has revised several requirements and credits. The calculation methodology and thresholds in the Low-Emitting Materials credit is restructured to be more workable around product categories. The Daylight and Acoustic Performance credits are re-designed to encourage more projects to consider daylight and acoustic performance during design. Both credits give more flexibility to the LEED project team to address t design considerations: including excessive sunlight and sound transmission between spaces.

The Future of LEED v4.1

Now that the USGBC has launched LEED v4.1 beta versions, the market will work with each draft LEED systems and provide feedback based on real-world application. The USGBC will present LEED v4.1 for public comment which will be followed by a member ballot. USGBC is opening a call for ideas for all LEED rating systems. Once a final draft is completed, it must be approved by the USGBC Board of Directors and LEED Steering Committee. The final draft will then be voted on by USGBC members. What do you think about LEED v4.1? How will LEED v4.1 affect your business?

For more information or to discuss the topic of this blog, please call Brad Blank at 360-727-3528.