What role does the Energy and Atmosphere Credit 4 play in LEED® certification?
Even the most energy efficient buildings consume electricity from an energy infrastructure that is detrimental to the environment. The LEED Energy and Atmosphere Credit 4 (EA 4 or EAC4) allows projects for existing buildings to choose renewable energy, offering points toward LEED certification that significantly reduce an existing building’s environmental impact. The ongoing development of the U.S. Green Building Council’s® various LEED rating systems has weighted more and more points toward the Green Power Credit and the on-site and off-site renewable energy credit.
How is the EAC4 rewarded in the LEED certification process?
Projects pursuing EA 4 can earn up to six LEED points by purchasing green power to offset a building’s energy use. The certification levels are as follows:
- 2009 USGBC LEED CERTIFICATION LEVELS
Certification 2-Year Electricity Usage Offset w/ Green Power Points Available Notes Commercial Interiors 50 – 100% 5 – 6 100% electricity offset achieves 1 ID Credit for Exemplary Performance Existing Buildings: Operations & Maintenance 25 – 100% 1 – 6 Offset of all building energy usage required using a combination of RECs and VERs