A new regulation by the U.S. Department of Energy mandates which private-sector green building certifications can be used in federal buildings to meet energy-efficiency standards. The rule, which goes into effect Nov. 13, says that when agencies use green building certification systems to meet federal sustainability standards, they must choose a system that verifies enhanced energy and water efficiency.
LEED Silver may be used, and in some instances, the Green Globes program may be substituted.
The private-sector certifications do not replace the government’s green building standards, but as required under 2007’s major energy law, the regulation provides federal agencies and private real estate companies an alternative way of certifying compliance. The department is allowing LEED Silver under the rule because Congress dictated it in the law.
A requirement provides for building re-assessments at least every four years to ensure energy and water savings continue well beyond the initial building opening or retrofit, the agency says. DOE will provide a webinar discussing the rule’s requirements in November.