Advantages and Disadvantages of LEED Certification

The environment is consistently endangered. The rising carbon emissions, plastic waste generation, and immature infrastructure systems leave life-risking impacts on the environment. Eventually, we are the ones to suffer. With such hap-hazard in the design, there is a dire need for sustainable practices to create an edge for these problems. With LEED Certification, we come one step closer to the goal.

As the demand for sustainable buildings grows, property managers consistently find ways to measure their environmental performance to gather sufficient customers. Such measures help us evaluate how efficient a building is for us to reside peacefully and healthily. As shareholders and tenants consistently demand reduction in environmental impacts, stringent systems come in handy.

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LEED Certification (Leadership In Energy and Environment Design) makes this possible. So, it helps raise the global standards of living. But that is not all. Its impacts on the environment may also include reducing waste, fewer resources, decreased life cycle costs, and maximizes healthy stay for occupants.

Due to all its environmental and health benefits, LEED Certification may be highly cost-effective, productive, and efficient. Indeed, it is the future that can help us save ourselves from the clutches of global warming and other environmental hazards.

What is LEED Certification?

The U.S. Green Building Council developed LEED to help create more efficient green buildings in the long run to maximize environment-friendly construction. It is thus a globally recognized symbol and a green building certification program. LEED certification fits all facilities and infrastructure.

The certification is provided to sustainable buildings after they have gone through the measurement for their environmental performance. The practice begins with rating systems to help determine the design, operation, maintenance, construction, and so much more related to these green buildings.

LEED mainly focuses on energy modeling that provides a range of benefits and maximizes a healthy environment in the long run. All green buildings that pass their environmental performance test comprehensively are supplied with this certification. The certification can be entitled to all buildings irrespective of new or existing.

LEED Certification can also come in handy for the property owner. It helps improve the facility’s reputation that makes more room for potential customers in the long run. It may also help a building establish leadership goals that inspire other buildings to transform into sustainable ones.

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Since the operations are low, these buildings may also be a more affordable option for occupants. Everything is done systematically, providing utmost comfort and convenience to both the occupants and their environment.

Advantages of LEED Certification

LEED Certification is known for the wide range of benefits that it has to offer. That is why it is being implemented by thousands of buildings worldwide today. Let us take an in-depth look at its benefits to unravel more relevant information.

1. Improved Indoor Air Quality

Buildings that are LEED-certified have proven to offer better indoor air quality than the ones that are not LEED Certified. This is not only helpful for people’s health but also for the environment in general. But this is prominently possible due to the unique green HVAC system installation in these buildings.

These systems are backed by antimicrobial and anti-allergy filters that make them generate pure air quality all the time. As a result, your home is highly likely to house improved air quality so that you can enjoy healthy living all the time. This also reduces the risk of viral fever, coughing, and sneezing due to impure air.

2. Promotes Better Health

We have already talked about how the innovative and green HVAC systems promote improved health among the occupants in these LEED-certified buildings. Since these spaces are free from all toxicity, they are more helpful for people’s health.

As a result, the risk of illnesses, pollution, and other environmental problems can be kept at bay. That is why one is more likely to be energetic, healthy, and happy here. Recent sources also suggest that the LEED-certified workers showcased an improvement in mental performance by 25%.

3. Improved Workforce

LEED Certification promotes not only sustainable buildings but also an improved workforce. Those who worked for these buildings showcased lesser sick leaves and massive improvements in their overall health. As a result, employees’ productivity levels were higher, and they were more committed to creating these buildings on time.

This directly impacted the productivity levels too. Since the employees were happy, it made a drastic improvement in the workforce that helped build these sustainable buildings properly. Worker satisfaction was at maximum, and it also led to a potential decrease in the employees leaving the workforce due to excessive labor.

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4. Fosters Public Relations

As people now realize the impacts of global warming and other environmental enemies, the need for sustainable products and measures becomes significant. Thankfully, people realize this now and want to encourage the building of sustainable infrastructure consistently.

With such encouragement, these buildings can foster public relations and improve their relationship with customers in the long run. As a result, creating or delivering a positive impact to people and transforming more prospective customers into regular buyers is no hard day’s task.

5. Money-Saving

The best part about LEED-certified buildings is that this helps reduce the utility costs and operation costs to a healthy extent. That is possible due to conservation that helps save numerous amounts of money for more important tasks ahead.

This is not common among buildings that are not LEED Certified as they may generate enhanced operation, maintenance, and utility costs due to no conservation practice.

6. Faster To Obtain Green Goals

Energy-efficient spaces are more likely to help buildings achieve their green goals on time. This also helps the environment to improve right on time. LEED Certified buildings are designed in such a way that they also help reduce the wastage of water and electricity.

This could potentially help the next generation and be an added benefit. But such practices do not provide any inconvenience to the homeowner. They get to install faucets and low-flow toilets that use HDPE Partitions.

Disadvantages of LEED Certification

Although LEED Certification is potentially helpful for the environment, it may also feature its fair share of drawbacks. Let us look at them to understand if they are genuinely beneficial for us in the long run.

1. Highly Expensive

Getting the LEED certification is not easy. It requires lump sum money that can put you at a significant financial crunch. The registration costs are as high as 750 to 3750 dollars. Moreover, the certification fees and the cost of other things are different.

So, it may round up to $10,000 for you. But these are only the participation fees. The actual costs like construction with sustainable materials and hiring the staff to make that possible doesn’t come easy.

The installation of renewable energy options may also be highly costly. That is why many small sustainable businesses that had adopted this certification had to drop the certificate later in the long run.

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2. Doesn’t Quite Do The Job

Most people consider the idea of LEED Certification farce. That is because it doesn’t quite fulfill the purpose. There is one fatal flaw in it that makes this possible. No matter how unsustainable an area might be, it receives the certification if the building meets the LEED criteria.

So, it may seem like they are helpful to the environment, but they are merely doing the job. That is why we often recommend businesses to think before adopting LEED Certification. It is a massive commitment, so please take your time and think wisely.

3. Demands Time And Energy

LEED Certification seems like a smooth-sailing process, but there is a lot of brainstorming and hard work that goes into it. Obtaining the certification is as daunting as it gets.

That is why it requires massive paperwork, lots of energy consumption, and tireless efforts. Even after all of this, many buildings do not make it to the LEED Certification. So, you have to be cautious when dealing with it in the first place.

4. Cheats The System

The real purpose of the LEED Certification is far from what companies think of it today. Instead of working towards making the earth a sustainable place to live in, it merely provides points to companies as far as possible. Most people also argue that it is simply cheating the system because of an unweighting point system from LEED.

For example- An unweighting system indicates that you can earn a point by working on simple things like building a bike rack. But if none of your employees ride bikes, it is rendered in vain. But you still earn points for it and get the certification. This defies the fundamental idea of LEED Certification.

Bottom Line

LEED Certification requires massive amounts of brainstorming. Since it is a commitment, we recommend you think before you go ahead with the idea. It can make an enormous difference to you.

Make sure you map out both the advantages and disadvantages carefully to understand if it matches your company’s objectives. You can also evaluate the cost it may require so that you do not have to face any financial crunch in the long run.

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Sonia Madaan is a writer and founding editor of the science education blog EarthEclipse. She loves writing on topics related to space, environment, chemistry, biology, geology and geography. When she is not writing, she loves watching sci-fi movies on Netflix.