What is The Living Building Challenge?

NSchepis MA, United States 0 Ratings 24 Discussions 0 Group posts

Posted by: NSchepis // Student at Bridgewater State

The Living Building Challenge (LBC) is an international sustainable building certification program, created in 2006 by the International Living Future Institute, as a part of the Cascadia Green Building Council, itself a chapter of both the United States Green Building Council and Canadian Green Building Council. The International Living Future Institute views LBC as an advocacy tool and philosophy, designed to promote a high level of sustainability in construction.

The Challenge is comprised of seven performance categories called Petals: Place, Water, Energy, Health & Happiness, Materials, Equity and Beauty. Petals are subdivided into a total of twenty Imperatives, each of which focuses on a specific sphere of influence. Project teams can also earn Petal Recognition (partial certification) by satisfying the requirements of a minimum of three categories, of which at least one must be water, energy or materials. The Challenge can be applied to new buildings, renovations, infrastructure, landscapes, neighborhoods, and communities.

A significant different between LBC and other programs is that certification is based on actual performance. To achieve "Living Building" status, projects must meet all imperatives and must be operational and continuously monitored for at least 12 consecutive months prior to final evaluation.

LBC also requires disclosure of all materials and chemicals used in a project, and prohibits the use of items from a "Red List," of materials and chemicals which are known to pose serious risks to human health and the greater ecosystem.

The Living Building Challenge is considered the most rigorous green building standard to achieve, tougher to achieve than LEED or BREEAM. This difficulty is intentional, helping to create and push the cutting edge of sustainable and healthy building.

http://living-future.org/lbc

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