Top 10 Green Building Nations Named


For the second consecutive year, Canada, China and India lead the world in embracing the LEED green-building rating system outside of the U.S.

Those countries ranked 1-2-3 in the U.S. Green Building Council’s second annual list of top 10 countries with the most LEED-certified space. The U.S., the birthplace of LEED, is not officially named in the ranking, though it remains the world’s largest market for green building, USGBC noted.

Project teams in more than 150 countries and territories around the world have implemented the green-building rating system in their projects, according to USGBC.

The ranking is based on cumulative gross square meters of space certified to LEED standards in each nation.

By the Numbers

Canada tops the list, with 26.63 million gross square meters of LEED space. Collectively, the country boasts 4,814 LEED-registered and certified projects, representing 63.31 million GSM of LEED space.

China and India, two of the world’s fastest-growing economies and rapid adopters of sustainable building practices, took second and third place, respectively, with 21.97 million and 13.24 million GSM of LEED-certified space, the council reported.

Brazil, with 5.22 million GSM of LEED-certified space, came in at No.4. China, India and Brazil represent more than 33 percent of global greenhouse emissions, according to USGBC.


The Republic of Korea rounds out the top five with 4.81 million GSM of LEED-certified space.

Germany, with 4.01 million GSM, and Sweden, 2.54 million GSM, represent Europe on this list. Germany finished sixth and Sweden made the list for the first time at No. 10. Both nations are routinely cited for their innovation and leadership in international efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, USGBC noted.

In the Middle East, the United Arab Emirates (3.13 million GSM) and Turkey (2.95 million GSM) have both had strong green building years, coming in eighth and ninth, respectively.

The UAE increased its total amount of LEED-certified space by 72 percent over last year, USGBC said.

A Global Commitment

“The global success of LEED in these countries is a sign that international business leaders and policy makers recognize that a commitment to transforming the built environment is crucial to addressing major environmental challenges,” said Rick Fedrizzi, CEO and founding chair, USGBC.

“The countries on this list are pushing this commitment forward.”

Collectively, more than 69,800 commercial and institutional projects are participating in the program, representing 1.23 billion GSM of construction space worldwide.

Prerequisites and credits differ for each rating system, and teams choose the best fit for their project. There are four levels of certification: Certified, Silver, Gold and Platinum.


Tagged categories: Architects; Asia Pacific; Certifications and standards; Color + Design; EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa); Green building; Green design; Latin America; LEED; North America; U.S. Green Building Council

Join the Conversation:

Sign in to our community to add your comments.