Thursday, May 17, 2007

LEED® Project Registration for the Greenbush project

Registration is the first step for LEED®. Most projects are registered directly through the USGBC’s website. LEED for Homes is still in the pilot phase, so it is registered through a LEED for Homes provider. Providers are chosen by the USGBC to verify that the homes are built to meet LEED standards. They also market LEED to builders, provide rating support, offer LEED training, and supervise LEED qualified inspectors and support staff.

Once a project is registered, the next step is typically for the provider to arrange a meeting with the entire design team to determine how many points the project theoretically qualifies for. The provider then delegates the responsibilities of data collection per credit amongst the team members. The provider collects the data and verifies that it meets LEED criteria. At the end of the project, the provider assembles all credits and supporting data, and submits it to the LEED certification team as one complete package.

Currently there are 12 providers across the US, and the USGBC has plans to expand the provider list after the pilot has closed by approximately 10-15 providers on an annual or semi-annual basis, or as demand dictates. The closest provider to the Greenbush project is in Michigan. Normally at least one visit with the provider is done in person, but due to the Michigan provider's busy schedule, the project's remote location, and the wonders of technology, all communication and data might be able to be transferred electronically*

. Talk about sustainable!

So far the costs for LEED registration are as follows:

  • Registration fee: $150
  • Provider fee: $500
  • Certification fee (paid at end of project): $50

In addition to using a LEED provider, an energy rater is needed for performance/commissioning testing. Additional energy tests can be performed to achieve more LEED points, and rates can vary from region to region. Because Greenbush is located in a remote location, this project may incur extra expenses for travel and lodging. One goal of this project is to facilitate green building for the average person in the area. If the energy rater cost is too high, I will look into alternatives.

*(This is a pilot and a great deal of flexibility has been given. This is not business as usual and will be not be the norm when the program launches completely in a couple of months. LEED expects to add more people to cover a larger portion of the country sometime in the future.)

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