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USGBC staff volunteer for Green Apple Day of Service projects

November 17, 2017
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This fall, USGBC staff joined the movement of parents, teachers and organizations working to make our schools greener through Green Apple Day of Service. More than 70 percent of our Washington, D.C.-based staff and over 50 percent of our staff around the world participated in Green Apple projects this year. Throughout the months of September and October, D.C. staff volunteered with sustainability-focused programs in K–12 schools around the D.C., Maryland and Virginia area.

Discovery Elementary in Arlingon, Virginia

Discovery Elementary in Arlington, Virginia.

Our volunteers began each day visiting our closest net zero energy school, Discovery Elementary, to experience firsthand the impact of a green school. We saw how the physical environment and school curriculum can creatively work together to drive student understanding of sustainability. Among the highlights of the tour were an interactive rooftop solar lab, educational signage about the sustainable building features, physical design elements related to local plants and animals and a solar clock integrated into the school entranceway.

Discovery Elementary in Arlingon, Virginia

Discovery Elementary uses signage and graphics to educate on sustainability.

After the visit to Discovery Elementary, our staff split up to volunteer with two different projects. At Washington Yu Ying Public Charter School, volunteers helped rearrange existing planting beds to create a space for classes to meet outside. Incorporating outdoor space and daylight into learning environments has been shown to improve student performance and increase productivity, as well as conserve energy resources.

Washington Yu Ying Public Charter School Green Apple Day of Service project

USGBC staff volunteer at a Green Apple project at Washington Yu Ying Public Charter School.

The remaining staff volunteered for Joyful Food Markets, a program hosted by Martha’s Table and the Capital Area Food Bank that increases access to and encourages consumption of fresh fruits and vegetables. The program is run at elementary schools in neighborhoods that have a lower income and less access to healthy foods, such as Cornerstone of Washington School, Cedar Tree Academy, and Powell Elementary School, Turner Elementary, and DC Prep, where USGBC staff volunteered.

Joyful Food Markets Green Apple Day of Service project

USGBC staff volunteer at a Green Apple project for Joyful Food Markets at DC Prep.

Green Apple Day of Service projects focus on making school improvements to benefit students in line with the three pillars of a green school: reduced environmental impact, health and well-being and increased sustainability and environmental literacy. The volunteer projects that USGBC staff participated in this year contributed in particular to the second and third pillars. Our staff was among the thousands of volunteers across 70 countries participating in Green Apple Day of Service, helping make schools everywhere healthier and more sustainable for future generations.

Participate in a Green Apple project in your community

Learning outside at the 2017 Green Strides Tour (USGBC Georgia)

November 16, 2017
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I had the honor of attending the Georgia Green Strides Tour 2017 with Andrea Falken of the U.S. Department of Education and Keisha Ford-Jenrette of the Georgia Department of Education, as well as numerous other national, state and local partners. We rode a van to some of the school sites that had been honored over the years as U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools. This year’s two-day tour focused on the theme “Taking Learning Outside,” and covered a wide range of approaches.

Our first stop, Pharr Elementary, had surveyed its teachers to learn their challenges in teaching and turned those into active, outdoor learning opportunities, which include hands-on learning modules for social studies lessons among the branches of a courtyard tree; various language arts rock gardens; and alphabet letters, words and numbers incorporated into garden pathways and signage.

At our second stop, Mason Elementary students were working toward answering the driving question of “How can we, as entrepreneurs, create a company to consistently produce enough to donate to the local community?” Students used their extensive hydroponics and aquaponics lab to determine which growing method might yield the greatest output. They also got dirty in an outdoor classroom pavilion and handicap-accessible, raised garden beds.

Mason Elementary students gardening

Mason Elementary School students. Photo by Steve Williams.

Our third stop, High Meadows School, demonstrated its commitment to outdoor learning from its founding principles. Students take advantage of a large outdoor play area, “The Meadow,” featuring a tire swing, natural play areas for digging and tree climbing, outdoor boat and dragon constructions, monarch way stations, native plantings, a stick fort, a retired train car turned into office space and playing fields in which the various grades learn cooperation and collaboration during all-school outdoor time. Students also learn to care for goats, chickens and horses under the skilled guidance of a full-time animal husbandry instructor.

Students learn to care for farm animals at High Meadows School.

High Meadows School students learn animal care. Photo by Steve Williams.

Ford Elementary, our last stop on day one, demonstrated a tremendous ability to sustain and grow an outdoor learning program over more than 20 years. Teachers explained how, by letting students drive learning, there is always something new to discover and add. Each year, students have studied various areas of their campus and evaluated how to make it a safer and healthier place to learn. This has led to students creating numerous outdoor classrooms, learning gardens, a compost station, a boardwalk to the site where they test stream water, trails and chicken coops, as well as dozens of other smaller outdoor projects, utilizing nearly every bit of outdoor space.

Ford Elementary students learn outdoors.

Outdoor projects at Ford Elementary. Photo by Steve Williams.

Morningside Elementary kicked off day two, a day that featured schools located in more urban areas of Atlanta. Students at Morningside demonstrated their mindful sustainability learning through a drum circle, work with a master gardener and learning from local business partners, who offer cooking demonstrations and taste testing in an outdoor amphitheater cooking station.

On limited land in an historic neighborhood, The Paideia School demonstrates a useful model for urban farming at campuses constrained by space. The full-time urban gardener and several part-time staff lead students to farm neighbors who volunteer their unused lands and successfully produce food in the city. How waste fits into this work is kept on the minds of these students with compost and recycling bins placed throughout the campus. The school hosts an annual zero-waste dinner for the community and features an amphitheater, fire truck climbing structure, monarch way stations and a fairy garden, among other outdoor learning tools.

Atlanta Neighborhood Charter School leverages its outdoor space to teach about healthy, local foods and cooking. The dedicated chef and the school farmer work with students to teach about how food is grown and prepared, the benefits of local purchasing and how sustainable, healthy nutrition impacts students’ bodies and minds. Students’ palates are thoughtfully broadened, and the menu is coordinated with the curriculum. Students also took part in the publication of a cookbook with some of their favorite recipes.

At our last stop, Georgia Institute of Technology, a 2016 Postsecondary Sustainability Awardee, we learned more about GIT’s Serve-Learn-Sustain initiative, which is engaging students from all of the colleges on campus to give back to their community. Students have focused learning beyond the boundaries of their college campus and are using the skills they have gained in collecting data to engage the community in solutions, such as how to reduce carbon emissions and study population diversity in the area.

Participate in upcoming USGBC Georgia events

America’s Pledge report shows commitments and trends in clean energy

November 16, 2017
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At COP23 this week in Bonn, Germany, a new report was released showing the cumulative impact of commitments by U.S. states, cities and businesses to take affirmative action to mitigate climate change.

On November 11, America’s Pledge on Climate co-chairs Michael Bloomberg and California Governor Jerry Brown released “America’s Pledge Phase 1: States, Cities, and Businesses in the United States Are Stepping Up on Climate Action.” The report analyzes climate action by U.S states, cities, businesses and universities in support of the Paris Agreement.

A large number of these nonnational leaders have made commitments to achieving the climate goals of the Paris Agreement for our nation, some before and others since the U.S. administration announced its intent to pull out of the Paris Agreement. USGBC, which is taking part in COP23, signed on to the We Are Still In open letter earlier this year, which now includes over 2,500 U.S. states, cities and businesses declaring support for the Paris Agreement. Taken together, these commitments represent more than half the U.S. economy and population.

Even more states, cities and private actors are taking actions that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, whether motivated by climate concerns, economics, risk reduction or other factors. The America's Pledge on Climate initiative, launched in July 2017, collects and shares data on the actions of states, cities and businesses to drive down their greenhouse gas emissions consistent with the goals of the Paris Agreement. The report provides a valuable snapshot of where we are in the transition to a clean energy economy, and compiles key policies that benefit the climate in the public and private sectors.

We know that climate change is both the greatest challenge and the greatest economic opportunity for the U.S., and green buildings are one of the critical ways we can both combat climate change and enhance our economy. Indeed, the report points to state and city municipal green building programs as evidence of how nonfederal actors have been early leaders in reshaping markets.

Learn how you can get involved in fighting climate change.

Download the America's Pledge report

Become a USGBC committee member to help shape Greenbuild 2018

November 15, 2017
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At Greenbuild Boston, the Greenbuild Education Committees worked hard behind the scenes for the education program, the most popular reason to attend Greenbuild.

As the 2016 and 2017 Greenbuild Special Programs Working Group (SPWG) Chairperson, I have the opportunity to work alongside experts in green building education, educational program development, interior design, brand strategy and theatrical productions to develop and fine-tune the educational experience at Greenbuild. Together, we have conceptualized new ideas and strategies for the delivery of innovative education sessions at Greenbuild, which will impart knowledge on shaping a more sustainable built environment for years to come.

My two years as chairperson for the SPWG and four years total on the committee have been valuable to me, both professionally and personally, and I plan to continue my commitment by applying for another committee or working group as my term on the SPWG comes to a close.

Greenbuild Education Committees members are passionate, collaborative and engaged, which has been pivotal in our team’s success in working toward the sustainable communities of tomorrow. Don’t miss your chance to take part in this truly unique community. The 2018 Call for Expressions of Interest is open until November 20. Passionate, committed professionals in the green building industry should consider applying for the following committees or working groups:

I encourage you to join these impactful committees—submit your self-nomination and expand upon your professional experience. All committee terms begin in January 2018.

Apply for a Greenbuild Education Committee or Working Group

House committee considers bill to transform Energy Star

November 15, 2017
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This week, the U.S. House Energy and Committee’s Subcommittee on Energy held a hearing to discuss draft legislation that would make major changes to the Energy Star program. Among them are a proposed move of Energy Star from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), and an application of Administrative Procedures Act (APA) requirements to the Energy Star program.

Since its inception under the EPA in 1992, Energy Star has become a widely recognized symbol for energy efficiency in the United States. In 2015 alone, Energy Star-certified products, homes, buildings, and plants have enabled Americans to save $34 billion in energy costs. Such homes can allow homeowners to save up to 30 percent on their energy bills compared to a conventional home. The housing sector is taking notice of Energy Star’s value as well. Just last year, more than 92,000 Energy Star-certified new homes were built across the country.

The committee hosted several witnesses, each of whom expressed support in keeping the Energy Star program intact, though they disagreed in what form. Kateri Callahan, from the Alliance to Save Energy, voiced the organization's opposition to the move from EPA to DOE, calling it “tremendously disruptive” and stressing the negative effects it might have on existing partner relationships. Conversely, the Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers’ Joseph McGuire backed the move to DOE, citing “lack of expertise within EPA [which] led to complications with verification testing requirements” following the appliance standards program’s move to EPA in 2009.

Also discussed at the hearing was the proposed application of APA requirements to Energy Star. Greg Merritt, of Cree, Inc., expressed strong opposition to this potential change, saying that it “would add unnecessary, time-consuming and burdensome regulation to a voluntary program that by its very nature must be nimble, flexible and responsive.”

USGBC supports the continuation of Energy Star under the jurisdiction of EPA, as well as adequate funding to keep the program robust and effective. Read our letter sent to the House Energy and Commerce Committee leadership to learn more about USGBC’s views on the draft proposal.

Read USGBC's letter

Greenbuild 2018 call for proposals

November 14, 2017
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The Greenbuild 2018 Call for Proposals is now open. You may now submit a proposal for next year's Greenbuild, to be held in Chicago. Greenbuild features sessions covering all aspects of sustainable design, construction and operations practices for buildings and communities, including their impact on people, the environment and the economy.  

Greenbuild 2018

When: November 14–16
Where: Chicago, Illinois

Greenbuild remains committed to delivering a broad spectrum of education topics to reach our diverse attendees, and we are excited to offer new education formats, which we have made a priority in this year’s call for proposals Proposals are due Fri., January 5, 2018 at 5 p.m. EST.

Greenbuild 2018 Priorities

  1. Expert-Level sessions: Greenbuild has a firm commitment to providing educational content for the current and future generations of green building experts. We are seeking an increase in the diversity and volume of Expert-Level (formerly known as 400-level) sessions that present detailed reviews of specific topics or work on cutting-edge issues.
  2. Immersive and experiential learning: Greenbuild aims to provide a breadth of educational opportunities for all learning styles and is seeking proposals that offer immersive learning experiences, including elements such as technology, deep reflection, play-based learning and active participation.
  3. Inspirational content: Greenbuild is calling for education that not only imparts knowledge, but also inspires action. Proposals are evaluated, in part, on whether or not they offer innovative or inspirational content to green building professionals.
  4. Rating system-specific sessions: We are seeking sessions that teach attendees about the current versions of the rating systems by providing specific, detailed information and guidance about the credit intents and requirements, supplemented with real-world experiences with the LEED, WELL and SITES rating systems. Please consult our guidance on how to develop a rating system-specific session.

We encourage you to submit your session proposal for consideration in the 2018 Greenbuild Core Education Program through our submittal site. Please review the Submittal Guide, the Call for Proposals, and the Program Policies before submitting.

Greenbuild is also seeking peer reviewers to evaluate education session proposals for Greenbuild Chicago. You can earn up to three of your continuing education hours to help maintain your professional credential by serving as a Greenbuild peer reviewer Please see the Call for Reviewers, and apply to be a Greenbuild peer reviewer.

Submit a proposal

Registration now open for the 2018 Green Schools Conference and Expo in Denver

November 14, 2017
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Registration is now open for the 2018 Green Schools Conference and Expo and Rocky Mountain Green in Denver, Colorado. The Green Schools Conference and Expo (GSCE) is the only national event to bring together all of the players involved in making green schools a reality: people who lead, operate, build and teach in U.S. schools.

Collaboration and innovation are necessary ingredients to transform schools into healthier, more sustainable places to learn, work and play. Leaders and advocates come together each year to work toward making visible, measurable and lasting progress toward the three pillars of green schools: environmental impact, health impact and environmental and sustainability literacy.

This year, the GSCE will be hosted in partnership with Rocky Mountain Green (RMG), USGBC Colorado’s regional sustainability conference. Now entering its 11th year, RMG will convene industry leaders, experts and professionals to inspire, connect and advance sustainable building within the region. Attendees will explore current green building trends and identify upcoming projects that will help shape the growth of the green building movement in the Mountain West.

This year's GSCE and RMG partnership will bring together experts from diverse fields within the realm of sustainability for a unique opportunity for collaboration and networking.

When: May 3–4, 2018
Where: Hyatt Regency Denver in downtown Denver, Colorado

View pricing details.

The co-located conferences will feature nearly two days of programming, with inspiring keynote speakers, informative workshops and breakout sessions and the chance to network with colleagues from across the country.

  • Speakers: The nation’s education, environmental and business leaders take the stage to motivate, inspire and teach our community.
  • Program: Equity and inclusion are critical to ensuring that social justice and environmental sustainability reach all students. GSCE 2018 is offering sessions that address social and emotional climate, special needs in schools and promotion of equity through sustainability efforts.
  • Attendees: Participants in the conference are inspired by master series speakers, who address current challenges, set goals for future action and share best practices.
  • Exhibitors: In the Exhibit Hall, attendees can discover new products and services vital to their careers, while forging relationships with vendors and service providers that last well beyond the conference. It's a must-see destination, showcasing the best of the green schools community.

Engage in thought-provoking conversations and join the community of passionate individuals who help make schools healthier and more sustainable.

Register todayto save up to 25 percent with early-bird pricing.

Register for the Green Schools Conference

Leaders in sustainability convene at first Greenbuild India

November 13, 2017
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Last week, the Greenbuild Conference and Expo made history by hosting the inaugural Greenbuild India in partnership with ABEC Exhibitions and Conferences. Hundreds of leaders, experts and frontline professionals dedicated to sustainable building convened in Mumbai for inspiring keynotes, robust sessions, invaluable networking and an interactive expo hall.

India’s sustainability and green building presence is growing rapidly, as India is now the third largest market for LEED outside of the United States. From housing to hotels, hospitals to schools, office buildings to transit systems, India is embracing LEED. In 2016, nearly 650 India building projects earned LEED certification.

In his keynote address, Mahesh Ramanujam, President and CEO of USGBC and GBCI, shared that the progress of LEED in India is a credit to the many advocates and organizations that have helped to build momentum for our movement. He also celebrated impressive milestones, including the news that Terminal 3 at the Delhi International Airport is the first airport in the world to adopt the Arc platform, and that Metro Bhawan, Delhi Metro Rail Corporation’s headquarters, is the first building in the world to achieve LEED certification through Arc. “I am so proud that this kind of leadership is coming from India and that we are making this kind of impact on the global stage," said Ramanujam.

Greenbuild India recap

  • Workshops: On Wednesday, USGBC Faculty led two all-day, preconference workshops that focused on LEED v4 and EDGE.
  • Education: On Thursday and Friday, education sessions offered attendees opportunities to learn about the latest green building research and to earn continuing education hours.
  • Expo: From Thursday to Sunday, an innovative expo floor featured the latest products and services from over 100 exhibitors.
  • Opening Plenary: On Thursday, Edward Mazria, internationally recognized architect, author, researcher and educator, addressed attendees as the Opening Plenary keynote speaker. He is the founder of Architecture 2030, and over the past decade, his research of the built environment has redefined the role of architecture, planning, design and building. During his keynote address, Mazria challenged India to become the global leader in climate change.
  • Executive Luncheon: On Thursday, C-level executives were celebrated at the Greenbuild Executive Luncheon. A panel focused on the dynamic interaction between buildings, the technology we use to ensure optimum performance within them and the health of their occupants. Panelists included Gopalakrishnan Padmanabhan (Moderator), Managing Director, GBCI India; R. Subramanian, Managing Director, Saint-Gobain; Anita Arjundas, Managing Director and CEO, Mahindra Lifespace Developers Ltd.; Rajat Malhotra, ‎Chief Operating Officer, IFM West Asia, JLL; and Prashant Kapoor, Principal Industry Specialist, IFC. Dr. M. Ramachandran, a renowned thought leader, author and former Secretary of the Ministry of Urban Development, closed the event with a brief presentation. He is known for the various urban reforms and rejuvenation steps he led to change the face of India’s urban sector.
  • Greenbuild Celebration: On Thursday evening, attendees celebrated the green building community with dinner, networking and a performance by Jonita Gandhi at the LEED-certified ITC Maratha hotel.
  • Women in Green: On Friday, female leaders attended the inaugural Women in Green Power Luncheon. Kate Hurst, SVP, Conferences and Events, USGBC, opened the event and acknowledged the role of women in shaping the green building movement. Then, Mili Majumdar, Managing Director, GBCI India, moderated a panel discussion with Deepa Sathiaram, Executive Director, En3 Sustianability Solutions; Sheila Sri Prakash, Founder and Chief Architect, Shipla Architects Planners Designers; Poorva Keskar, Director, VK:e environmental; and Vivien Lee, VP of Marketing–Asia Pacific, Interface.
  • Closing Plenary: On Friday, the Closing Plenary served as an inspirational end to the week by recognizing the Greenbuild India Leadership Award recipients. The Greenbuild Leadership Awards recognize exceptional organizations at the forefront of the green building movement. Eight organizations were recognized for raising the bar when it comes to creating healthier, more sustainable buildings, communities and cities. Recipients included: DMRC, Dr. Mangu Singh, Managing Director; K Raheja Corp., Kishore Bhatija, Managing Director, Real Estate Development; DLF Power and Services Ltd., Gautam Dey, Director; Infosys Ltd., Swapnil Joshi, Regional Manager, Infrastructure and Green Initiatives; ITC Hotels, Dipak Haksar, Chief Executive; En3, Deepa Sathiaram, Director; EDS, Tanmay Tathagat, Director; and LEAD, M. Selvarasu, Director. Afroz Shah, lawyer and environmental organizer, closed the event with keynote presentation. Shah is known for leading the world’s largest beach cleanup project. Since 2015, he has organized volunteer opportunities to clean Mumbai’s Versova beach. So far, volunteers have collected over 4,000 tons of trash from the 2.5-kilometer beach. Shah vows to continue his beach cleanup crusade until people around the world change their approach to producing, using and discarding plastic, as well as other products that wash up on beaches.

Greenbuild 2018

Join us next year for Greenbuild India, from Nov. 15 to 18, in Mumbai. Registration will open in Summer 2018.

Visit the Greenbuild India site

Happy birthday to the Center for Green Schools

November 13, 2017
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It seems like only yesterday, but it’s been 10 years since USGBC launched the National Green Schools Campaign alongside partners at the 2007 Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) event, committing to a vision of green schools for every child. That same year, USGBC launched the LEED for Schools rating system, which provided a leadership standard for better, healthier school buildings.

After listening to and learning from school leaders around the country, USGBC founded the Center for Green Schools almost exactly three years after its CGI commitment, with support from United Technologies Corp., broadening its foundational work in the green building movement to encompass topics and issues important to teachers, students, staff and parents.

Contributions to the green schools movement

Just as when we started, the Center for Green Schools is committed to the highest-impact opportunities to accelerate a global green schools movement. Since the founding:

  • We have inspired 2,013 certified and 2,133 registered LEED K–12 school projects as well as 4,247 certified and 3,862 registered LEED college and university projects.
  • We introduced, with partners, the concept of Green Ribbon Schools to the U.S. Department of Education and encouraged it to launch the award program. We partnered with the agency to design and host its web site,, the largest repository of free sustainability resources for schools.
  • Our staff and volunteers have worked with state governments to establish the U.S. Department of Education’s Green Ribbon Schools award program in dozens of states, strengthening the program’s “three pillars” of a green school as unifying criteria for the movement. This criteria are now used by organizations in 28 countries around the world.
  • We have inspired and sustained community service in schools through Green Apple Day of Service, driving the action of more than 790,000 volunteers across 73 countries since 2012, impacting more than 7.1 million students.
  • We lead the premier conference for green schools leaders and advocates, the annual Green Schools Conference and Expo.
  • We co-published the most comprehensive analysis of the current state of K–12 school buildings in more than 20 years through the publication of the 2016 State of Our Schools report, which appeared in dozens of local and national press outlets and generated more than 546 million media impressions.
  • We have reinforced the argument that healthy learning environments lead to thriving communities with the publication of hundreds of pages of original research and policy analysis.
  • Through our network of over 300 state lawmakers, we have helped to increase the introduction of green schools legislation in U.S. states fivefold.
  • We have been the primary voice for a new job class, the K–12 sustainability director, providing professional development to a growing network of 120 school district staff who collectively serve over 7.5 million students.
  • We have established four Green Schools Fellowships to successfully institutionalize sustainability positions in school districts. In addition, we have directly supported intensive professional development for 21 individuals through yearlong scholarships for school district sustainability staff.
  • We unveiled Learning Lab, a robust platform for curriculum content, which piloted with over 1,000 teachers in 26 countries. The platform now hosts over 500 lessons in both English and Spanish, provided by 10 high-quality partner organizations besides USGBC.
  • We launched LEED Lab, a course to teach the LEED rating system to college and university students by giving them hands-on experience in one of their buildings, an opportunity now offered in 25 institutions around the world.

We’ve been busy, as have the thousands of people we work with each day to make green schools for every child a reality. Don’t miss what we’re up to next—make sure you’re signed up for the Center for Green Schools updates in your subscriptions. And join us in person in May 2018, as we celebrate at the Green Schools Conference and Expo in Denver.

Explore the Center for Green Schools

Report reveals that LEED in China is accelerating

November 10, 2017
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According to a newly published report from CBRE and USGBC, as Chinese builders move in accordance with the nation’s 13th Five Year Plan, green building space is expected to reach two billion square meters by 2020, up from current estimates of 600 million square meters of green building space spread across more than 300 cities.

Between 2006 and 2016, LEED-certified projects had a compound annual growth rate of 77 percent, making China the global leader for LEED projects outside of the United States.

The "2017 China Green Building Report: From Green to Health” notes, additionally, that as of August 2017, more than 48 million square meters of projects across 54 Chinese cities have been LEED-certified.

The report also ranks the top 20 cities for LEED certification in 2017:

City 2017 LEED-certified Space (10,000 square meters) Cumulative Growth Since 2014
Beijing 1,003 58 percent
Shanghai 834 118 percent
Chongqing 412 10 percent
Shenzhen 264 225 percent
Wuhan 250 29 percent
Guangzhou 231 105 percent
Chengdu 208 131 percent
Hangzhou 172 196 percent
Tianjin 172 111 percent
Suzhou 171 108 percent
Nanjing 124 69 percent
Shenyang 106 87 percent
Wuxi 84 143 percent
Nanchang 66 2908 percent
Zhengzhou 50 212 percent
Guiyang 45 239 percent
Foshan 43 106 percent
Dalian 41 496 percent
Hefei 40 1289 percent
Xiamen 29 74 percent

Additional findings related to LEED:

  • In the past four quarters, the average occupancy rate of LEED projects in China was 81.7 percent, which is 1.5 percent higher than that of traditional offices. By comparison, the average occupancy of LEED Platinum projects in China was 86.7 percent, 10 percent higher than traditional offices. This indicates a significant increase in occupant demand for LEED Platinum structures.
  • Since 2014, LEED Platinum spaces have grown more than 200 percent and now account for 22 percent of all LEED-certified space in China, up from 14 percent.
  • As of Q2 2017, over 2.22 million square meters of quality office space had earned LEED Platinum certification.

The report is the third in a series of studies conducted by CBRE and USGBC. In 2016, “Towards Excellence: Market Performance of Green Commercial Buildings in the Greater China Region" found that LEED-certified Grade A office buildings exceeded 5.6 million square meters across 10 major cities in greater China, an increase of 7.4 percent from the previous year, accounting for 28 percent of the total market.

The 2016 report built upon CBRE’s 2015 report, "New Era of China’s Green Buildings," which found that rental premiums for LEED-certified Grade A offices in key mainland China cities—including Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Chengdu—enjoy a higher average rental performance ranging from 10 to 30 percent, and are better positioned to weather a downward commercial real estate market.

In China’s tier two cities, such as Chengdu, Tianjin, Hangzhou and Wuhan, LEED-certified Grade A office buildings cover a floor area of nearly one million square meters, accounting for an estimated 18 percent of the total Grade A office area in those cities.

Download the new report


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