The impact of construction and maintaining existing buildings is a major contributor to climate change. A solution to mitigating these associated impacts is green building rating systems; one of the most widely used is Leader in Environmental and Energy Design (LEED). First introduced in 2009 by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), LEED is routinely updated based on user feedback and evolving industry standards. One flaw of this rating system are the additional costs of integration with construction projects and the certification process. This flaw moves LEED certification out of reach of low-budget projects; thus, this study’s goals include: 1) determining the costs and benefits of LEED certification; 2) assessing if the rating system is overpriced; and 3) investigating possible solutions to the expenses as a financial attraction to low-budget projects. As an observational study, 10 peer-reviewed sources covering a multitude of sustainability and related factors will be evaluated. Credentials specifically in the green building construction industry will be compared. Following that, the marketing strategy of each rating system will be compared, with demographic data as an additional indicator. Another form of comparison will involve analysis of cities in Florida, comparable by selected criteria from the U.S. Census Bureau. Lastly, a cost-benefit analysis will be conducted comparing each rating system to expected ROIs by project-type based on marketing strategy. Expected results will show that there is awareness of high expenses for the LEED credential, but a solution does not exist beyond USGBC professionals offering guidance for reducing expenses.
Lynn University Student Research Symposium
Boca Raton, FL
College of Arts and Sciences
Ristuccia, P., & Lecher, A. L. (2019, March 26). Assessing the financial practicality of LEED. Poster presented at the College of Arts and Sciences Student Symposium, Lynn University, Boca Raton, FL.