Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) is a green building rating system developed by the United States Green Building Council (USGBC). Through third party verification programs, buildings are rated to insure that they have been designed and built with energy savings, water efficiency, CO2 emissions reduction, improved indoor environmental quality, stewardship of resources and sensitivity to their environmental impact in mind.
LEED® is intended to provide building owners and operators a concise framework for identifying and implementing practical and measurable green building design, construction, operations and maintenance solutions.
LEED® is a voluntary certification program that can be applied to any building type and any building lifecycle phase. It promotes a whole-building approach to sustainability by recognizing performance in key areas:
- Sustainable Sites
- Water Efficiency
- Energy & Atmosphere
- Materials & Resources
- Indoor Environmental Quality
- Locations & Linkages
- Innovation in Design
- Regional Priority
Since its inception in 1998, the U.S. Green Building council has grown to encompass more than 14,000 projects in the United States and 30 countries. USGBC members are publicly reviewed for approval by the almost 20,000 member organizations that currently constitute the USGBC.