We hear about LEED all the time but many of us are unaware of how it came about or evolved.
The following provides a tidbit of insight:
More than 20 years ago, Rick Fedrizzi, David Gottfried, and Mike Italiano established what is now known as the U.S. Green Building Council with a mission to promote sustainability in the building and construction industry.
With representatives from approximately 60 firms and nonprofit organizations, the group met at the American Institute of Architects for the council’s founding meeting. It was at this meeting that they discussed their ideas for designing, operating, and maintaining facilities in a Greener, more sustainable manner. While their comments received positive feedback, a considerable amount of work was needed before LEED was officially launched in March 2000. Today there are 76 LEED chapters around the world, more than 13,000 member companies, and 181,000 LEED-certified professionals worldwide.
As the organization has grown, its impact on the professional building and cleaning industries has been significant. Today, there are four levels of LEED certification:
1. Certified, which requires 40–49 points
2. Silver, 50–59 points
3. Gold, 60–79 points
4. Platinum, 80+ points
Further, some facilities that have decided not to seek LEED certification still want to reach some or all of the goals involved in LEED certification. To accomplish this, they typically use the program as a road map of what they need to do to build and operate their properties in a greener and more sustainable manner.