The U.S. Green Building Council now has a set of alternative compliance paths for commercial projects being done outside North America. The Global Alternative Compliance Paths apply to the 2009 version of the rating system. USGBC says the new paths provide more flexibility for projects around the world "and ensure a common language for all green buildings."
The use of LEED around the world is growing rapidly. In 2012 projects outside the U.S. made up over 50% by floor area of LEED registrations. The USGBC says it is certifying 18,000 square metres of commercial building space each day, comprising more than 49,000 projects in 135 countries.
A new green building standard being proposed by ASHRAE, the U.S. Green Building Council and the Illuminating Engineering Society (IES) will make building commissioning mandatory. ANSI/ASHRAE/USGBC/IES Standard 189.1-2011, Standard for the Design of High-Performance, Green Buildings Except Low-Rise Residential Buildings, covers the site, water and energy use, indoor environmental quality and the building’s impact on the atmosphere, materials and resources.
Currently the standard implies that when a building area is less than 5,000 square feet it is considered to have simple building systems, and thus requires a reduced level of commissioning effort, referred to as "Acceptance Testing." However, according to Jeff Ross-Bain, a member of the Standard 189.1 committee, because many buildings less than 5,000 square feet can be complex, under the proposed changes, building commissioning per Section 10.3.1.2 would become mandatory for all buildings.
The proposed addendum is open for public review until November 18. To comment on the proposed changes or for more information, click here.