Thursday, February 28, 2008

Journal #13: LEED Innovation in Design

I found an article at BuildingGreen.com that discusses some new problems with the LEED rating system in promoting innovation in green design. One of the staples of the LEED rating system is the ambiguous "innovation in design" which a building can earn up to four points on. When this point was asked about in class, someone said that "innovation in design" could be as simple making a furniture out of used soda cans. This specifically entails products that have zero net greenhouse gases. One example that I found was FLOR, which uses specialty materials for tiles and other flooring materials.

This article discusses how just recently, after pleads from LEED designers, released compiled information of the products that were created to achieve these points:
For years, designers have been pleading for a more accessible list of previously approved innovations. Why force everyone to reinvent the wheel? If the point of LEED is to help the industry as a whole innovate its way to greener buildings, shouldn't USGBC be doing all it can to share that information?
This is another example of USGBC being a little behind in evolving LEED and tailoring it to designers instead of creating a rigid system that does not promote the concept of green buildings as well as it could. LEED could allocate a standard amount of points for a building using an existing product that is considered in innovation in design, and could allocate more points if the chosen innovation in design is newly created or the first to be used in the new construction. Maybe further incentives could be awarded to designer (non-building) companies that want to promote their products as innovation in design products, furthering the concept of green design and stretching the reach of LEED.

1 comment:

Deanna said...

I've been enjoying your continual search and destroy mission on LEED. From a learning perspective, it is good to watch someone find info, analyze it, compare it, synthesize it - you demonstrate that you are ready for grad school.

So, what to do with LEED now? Should it be scrapped? Should you start BLEED - Better Leadership with Energy and Environmental Design? :) Is the fact that people are STARTING to think about long term consequences enough?