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What You Should Know About LEED-EBOM Recertification

Today's tip is about the requirement for recertification in the LEED for Existing Buildings: Operations and Maintenance, or LEED-EBOM, rating system.

Many experts in the field liken a LEED certification plaque to a good restaurant review. The older the review, the less meaningful it is in terms of how good the food still might be. Similarly, a five-year-old LEED-EBOM certification only means that five years ago, the building was performing sustainably.

That's why USGBC requires recertification at least once every five years. The goals are to make sure that facility managers keep sustainability a priority and to continuously improve on the initial certification.

Michael Arny, president of Leonardo Academy, a leading expert on LEED-EBOM, says he recommends registering for your recertification as soon as you receive the initial certification plaque. The benefits of doing so are twofold: One, you lock in the version of the LEED-EBOM rating system you'll be using for the recertification. As LEED is now on a three-year update cycle, requirements may change between certifications. But by registering your project right away, you know what the requirements will be. Secondly, registering right away helps you keep your eyes on the prize, not allowing recertification to be lost amidst the daily facility management grind.

Arny says he recommends recertifying every two to three years, but hopes eventually recertification will be annual. That way, facility managers can plan for any expenses as part of their yearly budgets. Also, they can use recertification as a communication tool to show the value of their department to upper managers.


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