LEED stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, a green-building certification system administered by the Canada Green Building Council, which has adapted green-building criteria developed by the U.S. Green Building Council to reflect conditions unique to Canada. Independent auditors judge a building according to five broad areas: site development, water efficiency, energy efficiency, materials selection and indoor environmental quality.

Certification is offered on four levels: certified, silver, gold and platinum, with LEED certification currently available for new construction (commercial, institutional and large residential developments), single-family homes and commercial interiors. The Canadian Green Building Council plans to roll out a certification system for operations and maintenance of existing buildings before the end of 2009.

Built Green

Built Green is a certification system for residential construction devised by the Built Green Society of Canada and administered in B.C. by the Canadian Home Builders’ Association of B.C. The system assesses residential buildings according to two broad areas: energy efficiency, based on Natural Resources Canada’s EnerGuide for New Houses; and green materials, with points scored for materials and products listed in Built Green’s catalogue of approved products. New buildings and home renovations can achieve bronze, silver, gold or platinum levels of Built Green certification.