BREEAM Standards Updated for US Projects
United Kingdom-based Building Research Establishment recently announced that it has updated its Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Methodology International New Construction standard for the use in the United States.
Founded in 1990, the BREEAM method is described as an “independent, science-based and inclusive assessment.”
The program provides managers and owners with a “framework for improving the operational sustainability of their asset, reducing energy costs and consequently carbon footprints,” according to the organization.
Developments are awarded credits for achieving targets specified in nine categories, including energy and ecology. The final total of credits determines the rating and certification on a scale of Pass, Good, Very Good, Excellent and Outstanding.
BRE Global first branched out into the American market in the summer of 2016, when it released a free technical manual designed specifically for the U.S.
Based on the international BREEAM In-Use system, the manual was reportedly tailored to the particulars of the U.S. green building sector, taking into account specific legal and governmental requirements in place.
BREEAM has more than 2 million registered projects and over 567,000 certified buildings in 81 countries.
BRE consulted with global design, architecture, engineering and planning firm HOK in a yearlong process to further adapt the standard to the U.S.
The adaptations for the BREEAM International New Construction standard reportedly include a regional approach that accounts for varying building codes, best practices and industry standards across the U.S.
BRE says that the changes ensure that BREEAM “delivers the most appropriate sustainable solutions for each project in an efficient way, thereby delivering the maximum value.”
BREEAM New Construction also includes an option to work with “non-standard buildings” through the BREEAM Bespoke process.
In addition, the BREEAM In-Use standard includes for the first time, the assessment and certification of sustainability performance for existing residential and multifamily buildings in the U.S.
"The adoption of BREEAM International by HOK marks another significant step forward for BREEAM,” said Shamir Ghumra, Director of BREEAM at BRE.
“This will give more built environment stakeholders even more access to BREEAM in the USA; building on our growing number of customers for BREEAM In-Use. HOK have shown great leadership in taking forward BREEAM International."