It is very rare to read a green building regulation and not see a mention of a green rating certification. When I started reviewing Executive Order 13514, I was certain that the LEED rating system would be included. On Friday, we saw that new green federal contracting requirements did not rely on independent green rating certifications.   Surely another section of the Executive Order mentions a green building rating system. Lets look at Section 2(g)(ii) and (iii):

[T]he head of the agency shall … (g) implement high performance sustainable Federal building design, construction, operation and management, maintenance, and deconstruction including: (ii) ensuring that all new construction, major renovation, or repair and alteration of Federal buildings complies with the Guiding Principles for Federal Leadership in High Performance and Sustainable Buildings (Guiding Principles); (iii) ensuring that at least 15 percent of the agency’s existing buildings (above 5,000 gross square feet) and building leases (above 5,000 more gross square feet) meet the Guiding Principles by fiscal year 2015 and that the agency makes annual progress toward 100-percent conformance with the Guiding Principles for its building inventory . . . .

Again, no mention of a green building rating system.   What about the Guiding Principles for Federal Leadership in High Performance and Sustainable Buildings (PDF)? While it reads a lot like the green building rating systems out there, the Guiding Principles do not mention a specific green building rating system. Instead, numerous green building strategies are included:

  • Integrated Design
  • Commissioning
  • Energy Efficiency
  • Measurement and Verification
  • Conservation of Indoor and Outdoor Water
  • Ventilation and Thermal Comfort
  • Moisture Control
  • Daylighting
  • Low-Emitting Materials
  • Protect Indoor Air Quality During Construction
  • Recylced Content
  • Construction Waste
  • Ozone Depleting Compounds

After reviewing Executive Order 13514 and the Guiding Principles, I am convinced that the federal government is moving away from non-governmental green building rating systems, like LEED.   What do you think? Should the federal government create its own green building rating system?   Related Links