Just what is LEED?

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The Russell T. Tutt Science Center on the Colorado College campus is one of three LEED-certified buildings in Colorado Springs.

The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design rating system is the U.S. Green Building Council’s benchmark for the design, construction, and operation of high performance buildings.
LEED gives building owners and operators the tools they need to have an immediate and measurable impact on their buildings’ performance. LEED promotes a whole-building approach to sustainability by recognizing performance in five key areas of human and environmental health: sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection, and indoor environmental quality.
LEED provides a roadmap for measuring and documenting success for every building type and phase of a building lifecycle. Programs include:

  • new commercial construction and major renovation projects
  • existing building operations and maintenance
  • commercial interiors projects
  • core and shell development projects
  • homebuilding
  • neighborhood development
  • guidelines for multiple buildings and campus projects
  • schools building
  • retail design

The U.S. Green Building Council also is developing LEED standards for healthcare and laboratories.

How is LEED Developed?

The LEED Rating System was created to provide the building industry with consistent, credible standards for what constitutes a green building. The rating system is continuously refined through a consensus-based process.

How does a building become LEED certified?

The first step to LEED certification is to register a project. A project is considered if it meets prerequisites and achieves the minimum number of points to earn the certified level of LEED project certification. Award categories are Certified, Silver, Gold, or Platinum.

Who Can Use LEED?

Everyone: Architects, real estate professionals, facility managers, engineers, interior designers, landscape architects, construction managers, lenders and government officials
The LEED program offers training workshops and an accreditation program to develop and encourage green building expertise across the entire building industry.

Source: The U.S. Green Building Council