The total footprint of commercial projects certified under the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification program has surpassed two billion square feet, the US Green Building Council (USGBC) says.
What’s more, an additional seven billion square feet remains in the pipeline across the globe as registered projects.
In an announcement last week, the USGBC said LEED is now certifying two million square feet of commercial building space each day in more than 130 countries.
All in all, nearly 50,000 commercial projects and 23,000 homes have earned certification. When added to the 86,000 additional registered units in the pipeline, this means the total number of registered and certified projects equates to around 159,000.
The variety of LEED certified projects, too, is impressive, including not just new buildings but also landmark buildings such as New York’s Empire State Building and even buildings such as the University of Wisconsin’s Education building, which is more than a century old.
Rick Fedrizzi, president, CEO and founding chair of the USGBC, says the move toward environmentally sustainable building is changing landscapes around the world.
“In communities around the globe, leaders from every sector of the building industry are reinventing their local landscapes with buildings that enliven and bolster the health of our environment, communities and local economies,” he says.
Fedrizzi says the journey to the current milestone has been a significant boon for the economy. In America alone, he says, LEED-related projects have funnelled $554 billion into the economy and supported 7.9 million jobs.
What’s more, the USGBC says, the number and breadth of LEED projects continues to grow. As of last week, over 300 projects around the world earned certification across more than 20 countries, with notable projects including the LEED Platinum commercial interior for Google in Mumbai; the Vestas Technology Center in Lem, Denmark; Ernst and Young Plaza in Los Angeles, which earned LEED Platinum for the operations and maintenance of an existing building; and Warrensburg Elementary, a LEED Gold school in Warrensburg, Missouri.