In conjunction with last week’s Greenbuild International Conference and Expo, the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) announced LEED Positive – a vision statement and LEED development roadmap that will lay the foundation for a future of LEED that is regenerative.

In the 20 years since its launch, LEED has transformed global building practices and communities all over the world. With more than 100,000 projects now engaged, the rating system has catalyzed changes in the building industry related to energy, water, waste, indoor environmental quality and more. From mainstreaming cool roofs, low-VOC paints, building efficiency and commissioning, to providing the proof of concept enabling dramatic increases in the stringency of energy codes, LEED has defined green building standards.

LEED Positive vision will guide USGBC in transitioning LEED from strategies that reduce the harm done by buildings to strategies that cause no harm and begin the process of healing and repair.

LEED Positive will encourage development that allows buildings to become a vehicle for environmental restoration and repair. The vision is composed of several parts that will work together to guide the development of the LEED rating system, including:

  1. Proposed LEED Positive targets for energy and carbon reduction that will require new construction to go further and push existing buildings with high energy usage to substantially increase their efficiency efforts;
  2. Define LEED Positive targets for other LEED credit categories that make up the holistic LEED rating system;
  3. Continue investment in LEED v4.1 to accelerate the implementation and adoption of LEED for both new and existing buildings; and
  4. Support category level performance certificates through the Arc platform to provide existing buildings with a pathway to LEED certification.

By reporting performance data and obtaining a performance score, a project will now be able to earn a category performance certificate in each of the five performance categories tracked in Arc—energy, water, waste, transportation and human experience—and once a project achieves higher performance scores across all categories, they will be able to pursue LEED certification.