Number of LEED® projects doubled in 2008

The number of U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED)-registered and LEED-certified projects doubled in 2008, signaling green building growth, according to

The number of LEED projects increased from about 10,000 registered projects at the end of 2007 to more than 20,000 by the end of January 2009. Square footage of LEED-certified construction increased 92 percent from 148 million square feet to 248 million square feet.

USGBC believes the growth can continue in the midst of the economic crisis, saying property owners are looking for ways to upgrade existing facilities.

"We're feeling confident that this truly represents a shift in the market," says Rachel Gutter, USGBC's senior manager for the education sector.

USGBC recently revamped its LEED for Existing Buildings: Operations and Maintenance program and will launch a LEED portfolio program later this year, which could help manage green building growth.

At the 2006 Greenbuild conference, USGBC announced a goal of 100,000 LEED-certified commercial buildings and 1 million certified homes by 2010.

"Like many goals dealing with climate change, it's an ambitious one," Gutter says, "but not out of reach."

Date : 4/6/2009