The difference between BREEAM and LEED

The rapid growth of the economy, industry and urbanization of cities lead to an increasing the impact on natural environment and surroundings. Often, the defenders of nature and ecologists emphasize about critical status of air we breathe, water we use every day, materials and facilities we use in daily life, buildings where we live. Among developers the green construction tendency and the desire to get a certificate of compliance with international standards are becoming popular. Such widely-used methods is the methods for evaluation of ecological efficiency of buildings and of construction process in general BREEAM and LEED. At first sight, the methods of evaluation and of green certification are similar, but have certain differences. Precisely these differences are key to the subject’s attention when choosing a voluntary certification method.

BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method) was developed by the British scientists and engineers in 1990 and was the first. This method considers and evaluates the construction process and building construction at such stages of life cycle as construction, refurbishment and operation. In addition, BREEAM method evaluates and emphasizes sustainable construction and effective usage of ecoresources and ecomaterials, makes the certification system more attractive for investments and forms ecologically stable and safe internal and external environment.

Other method of voluntary certification of green construction was developed by the American researchers – LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design). LEED method although is oriented on the evaluation of ecological efficiency of buildings, but for evaluating the following criteria are considered: land of plot, construction materials and resources, engineering service level for building maintenance, and transport accessibility to building.

The main differences between BREEAM and LEED are that the British standard evaluates by using the strict requirements, in comparison of the less strict requirements of LEED. While evaluating the LEED method despite advances less strict requests for evaluation, but uses exclusively the American evaluation standards regarding on American company’s experience. BREEAM methodology, conversely, advancing stricter requests, is more flexible standard that adopts and considers the national specifications of each participant of voluntary green construction certification. Also due to the fact that the method of evaluation BREEAM researches the construction process stage by stage and at different stages of life cycle, the consumer can engage BREEAM`s expert at any stage regardless on was completed or just started. This is again a plus of the British method and its ease of use. In accordance to the requirements of LEED method the business entity, intending to pass the certification exclusively due to the American standard, is obligated to involve LEED`s specialist at the design stage.

So, choosing the certification method, it is important in detail analyze the project because only its comprehensive studding could allow to select the best rational type of standard for each project. The competency of experts of MCL, LLC is a successful organization of certification according to your choice and, of course, development of recommendations to choose the most suitable method of green certification. In the possession of the specialists of MCL, LLC is a significant experience of native and foreign partners in the sphere of ecology and surroundings protection.

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