With the world moving ever more swiftly along with the green revolution, professionals in the construction industry will need to prioritise sustainable building design if they want to stay in business. This means implementing green design elements right from planning to completion, with a focus on minimising environmental impacts and maximising the building’s lifespan.
Economic incentive to push the sustainability agenda in commercial construction circles is huge. In what have been otherwise trying economic circumstances over the last decade, the global green building market has boomed. In the height of its most recent recession, the U.S. green building market grew from $10billion in 2005 to $78billion in 2011. Considering the downward-spiral spin-off for the global economy, green building market value reached $260billion worldwide in 2013. Current trends indicate that global investment in sustainable commercial property market share will reach $960billion by 2023.
These figures present a pretty positive case for investing in sustainable building projects. And not only is it possible for investors to achieve ROI with new building and design ventures, but with existing ones too. A look at the business case for green building in the U.S shows that investors achieved an average 19.2% ROI on existing green building projects, simply by employing effective energy efficiency improvements.
So, whether you’re embarking on a new building venture or looking at upgrading an existing one, it’s imperative that you prioritise the greening of your building – to ensure the sustainability of both the building and the investment.
The most daunting question on your mind will likely be how to go about it. Luckily, there are experts in the field of green building who are helping sustain the industry as one of the fastest growing commercial investment opportunities in the world. Those experts are LEED.
What is LEED?
Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, or LEED, are a faction of the U.S Green Building Council that drives change in the way the construction of buildings and communities is thought out. LEED certification currently serves as the global benchmark for sustainability-development ratings.
How can I implement green building measures in project planning?
If you want a new project to become LEED certified on completion, you will have to have extensive knowledge of LEED for Building Design and Construction. It might be helpful to use any one of the candidate handbooks that suits the needs of your project. There are also many professional LEED consultants, known as Green Associates, who you can consult with from the outset to ensure that your project stays on track for LEED certification.
How can I employ LEED measures for existing building improvements?
LEED measures the performance of energy efficient and carbon neutralising systems already in place. If you want to make improvements to your building to become LEED certified, you will need to identify key focus areas for green technology implementation. Here it may be helpful to understand the prerequisites for certification. Prioritising where to effectively put your greening efforts may help you to get started.
Can my building be LEED certified outside the USA?
Yes. Any project, home or commercial, anywhere in the world can be LEED certified so long as it meets the minimum program requirements. Projects registered for LEED certification can track their progress live, all across the globe. The LEED guide for Building Design and Construction is also available in Chinese.
With a 43% market demand for green building projects in Greater China in 2015, and 110 million sqm of LEED project construction space already in use in the region, the playing field is set. LEED is driving significant change in China’s building standards, making it the second-largest market for green building design in the world.
With the undeniable economic and environmental impact of green building design in the 21st century, it’s time that you employed LEED measures to secure your building’s place in the future of design and construction.