TreeHugger has covered the significant problems that the LEED green building certification program has been having lately, with pressure from 56 congressmen to have the government dump it because of concerns from the chemical and plastic industries. The War in the Woods has been going on for years. The USGBC had been working on a new version of LEED 2012 that made significant changes, but yesterday Rick Fedrizzi, president of the US Green Building Council, which administered LEED, called a time out. He writes on the USGBC blog:
As we’ve gone through public comment on LEED 2012, and engaged in hundreds of discussions with our members, the LEED community and numerous other stakeholders, we have heard repeatedly that while our community continues to fully embrace our mission, they need more time to absorb the changes we’re proposing and to get their businesses ready to take the step with us....Therefore we’ve decided to delay ballot on LEED 2012 until June 1, 2013, (or potentially sooner in 2013 if our members and the market tell us they are ready). We will use this time to deliver on the infrastructural improvements to the LEED program already underway.
Nadav Malin writes on BuildingGreen.com:
The move came in response to a growing outcry from architects and other building industry professionals—including many who have been core supporters of LEED since its inception—who had three related concerns:
• The proposed changes in the rating system were too much, too fast, especially in a weak real estate market.
• Some of the changes needed more refinement , especially in the Materials & Resources category, where whole new approaches to material selection had been introduced and had changed significantly with each public comment draft.
• Tools and resources needed to achieve the credits would not be widely available by the time the new system was slated to launch in November 2012.
The consensus among the green building tweeters appears to be positive and supportive. Philip Proefrock writes on EcoGeek:
LEED is a developing system, not a fixed standard. Previous transformations have revised and reoriented the rating system, and this has helped to advance the cause of green building. The intent of the USGBC has been to continue to push the construction industry to make buildings better. However the present perception is that the new LEED pushes too much, too fast.
Updates will be added as I gather more opinions.