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It is worth noting that green building assessment programs are aimed at studying the construction and operation of facilities on the issue of their compliance with the country standards. Each of the initiatives evaluates the impact that buildings have on the environment as well as the way these buildings were built and how they can be disposed of in the future. However, each program has its criteria for conformity and functionality. The main objective of all the programs in reducing the consumption of natural and energy resources during construction and afterward. The purpose of this paper is to review five different green building assessment programs and relevant case studies.
BREEAM is one of the leading methods of facility performance evaluation. This program displays an entire system of environmental assessment methods and conformity standards, and it describes the crucial construction characteristics comprehensively. The advantages of this approach to assessment lie in the fact that it allows designing buildings while improving their performance and life cycle with minimum land use and waste (BREEAM, n.d.). For instance, a positive impact on the initiative is evident in terms of Brandon’s primary school and its full compliance with the environmental criteria. During the design, construction, and management of the building the operating costs were reduced to the minimum, and the working conditions were improved significantly. The building meets all the standards and has a minimal impact on the natural environment (BREEAM, n.d.).
CASBEE is a national evaluation program, which is significantly different from the one described above. Even though it relies on the same criteria, the land-use factor has the greatest weight in this approach. One of the case studies that has been evaluated positively by this program is the multi-use cultural activity center in Japan (Aiina center, n.d.). Aiina center is evaluated as a highly functional facility that makes effective use of the land through remaining sustainable and causing minimum contamination to the environment.
This system is similar to BREEAM; however, it has been revised and adapted to take the aspect of hot climate into account. The approach assesses the effectiveness of water and energy usage, as well as indoor air quality and transport links (Jurleit, 2015). For instance, according to Green Star, Flinders Medical Centre is an example of a multi-functional construction that has low levels of greenhouse gas emissions and applies the principle of sustainability.
DGNB is one of the voluntary certification systems. It assesses the impact of buildings in terms of environmental, economic, functional, cultural, and social factors. The approach mustn’t consider the individual metrics but the overall efficiency of facilities (Jurleit, 2015). For example, the headquarters of Siemens has received the platinum certification from the program due to its overall high efficiency, multipurpose approach to facilities, and environmental friendliness.
The American system of certification is one of the most widely recognized approaches in the world (Jurleit, 2015). Many countries have adopted this system to their geographical, social, and economic peculiarities; nevertheless, the main criteria are universal for all states. As a rule, transnational corporations use this certification approach to assess their institutions. For example, Batten Hall (Harvard Innovation Lab) has been appraised by LEED as an efficient facility that indicated energy cost reduction, sufficient walking distances, and a tendency for reducing wastes.
In general, all of the evaluation programs are aimed at preserving and enhancing the quality of buildings and reducing their negative impact on the environment. They allow extending the design to consider the facility’s sustainability, utility, and comfort. Despite the active development of new construction technologies, the main criteria are identical in terms of energy efficiency, attention to the environment and health of citizens, and the reduction of emissions and hazardous wastes.
Aiina center. (n.d.). Web.
BREEAM. (n.d.). Brandon primary school. Web.
Jurleit, A. (2015). Think global certify local: Global comparability and regional adaptation for community certification systems. Hamburg, Germany: Books on Demand.