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Report shows how LEED certification supports net zero energy

Codes and Standards

Report shows how LEED certification supports net zero energy

Whole-building energy simulation, ASHRAE compliance requirement are key factors.


By Peter Fabris, Contributing Editor | March 20, 2018

report by the New Buildings Institute highlights where LEED certification aids in the goal of achieving net zero energy.

“Getting to Zero Status Update and List of Zero Energy (“ZE”) Projects for 2018” is a digest of almost 500 certified, verified and emerging zero energy projects in the U.S. and Canada. The analysis shows that 70% ZE Verified projects are LEED-certified or registered with LEED. Most of those reached either Platinum or Gold certification levels.

A LEED v4 credit for projects that achieve increasing levels of energy performance beyond standard requirements encourages aggressive reductions in energy usage, the report says. More points are awarded proportionally with higher levels of improvement from the baseline. For example, a new construction project that demonstrates a 50% reduction in energy usage from the baseline has the opportunity to earn as many as 18 points.

Nearly all of the LEED Energy and Atmosphere credits support the advanced energy performance necessary for zero energy. LEED v4 requires and rewards energy efficiency through a whole-building energy simulation or prescriptive compliance with ASHRAE or other rigorous energy standards and methods.

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