Conversations about climate change are driving all of us to closely examine how we live and the products we use. It’s not just the individual asking these questions, but companies of all sizes, too. Recent trends have shown consumers are looking to companies they trust and respect to pave better paths to sustainability and reduce their environmental impact. That’s why the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) designed LEED: A globally recognized certification program with the goal of promoting sustainability and preserving natural resources.
The Benefits of Becoming LEED Certified
There are many benefits to being LEED certified, like tax incentives, reduced energy costs, and a more favorable public image. Going solar can help you get LEED certified while adding a layer of its own benefits to your business. Let’s start by looking at LEED certification a little closer.
How Does the LEED Certification Program Work for Businesses?
Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) was created in 1993 and is used globally as a comprehensive framework for green building design, construction, operations, and performance. LEED certification is granted on a point-scoring credit system: for certain green initiatives taken, points are earned. A minimum score of 40 is required to be basic LEED certified, but buildings can score up to 100 points for different rating levels. Points are earned according to the structure in question and can be applied to new and existing buildings, so scoring is fair and flexible. There are predefined categories for earning credits, some based around water use, location, innovation, energy, and others.
The Perks for Businesses to Become LEED Certified
If your company is looking for ways to increase sustainability, cut energy costs, earn federal incentives for reducing your carbon footprint, or even cater to a greener audience, being LEED certified can help. Here are just a few of the perks for LEED certified buildings:
- Increased Property Value: Operating an energy-efficient building increases property values by at least 8% and often more than 10%, and LEED certified businesses see a higher rate of increase than more general “environmentally friendly” ones. This trend is seen in commercial and even residential settings, as LEED certified homes have seen a 19% increase between 2017 and 2019.
- Consumers Notice: A 2017 study showed that 88% of global consumers are more loyal to environmentally ethical companies, and 92% more likely to trust companies that support environmental issues. Similarly, 76% of consumers will refuse to purchase products or services from a company that supported an issue contrary to their personal beliefs. Other data shows 90% of millennials are willing to pay a higher price tag for products that are sustainable, even if it means parting with their preferred brands. This is extremely powerful information that companies can utilize to build a stronger connection to their customers and clients.
- The ROI is Measurable: Companies with green initiatives are growing 28 times faster than average companies and are seeing a 46% increase in partnership opportunities and employee growth.
- Financial Incentives: There are multiple programs rewarding LEED certified buildings including tax credits of up to $1.80 per square foot on certain new and existing buildings, and a 26% rebate for renewable energy systems, with more legislature in the works.
Installing a Solar Array Will Help Your Business Become LEED Certified
Going solar is one big step you can take towards getting LEED certified. Solar power falls under the Energy and Atmosphere (EA) category, where a minimum score of 10 must be held by all LEED certified buildings. Depending on the amount of energy a building can offset through use of solar power, a total of 5 points can be earned towards certification. That’s half of the requirements within the category, and 12.5% of the total points.
Getting LEED certified will benefit your business socially, environmentally, and ethically. Whether you’re just getting started with LEED or looking for your last few points, solar can help you get there by saving you money and energy. Call us today for a quote!