Brazil. As the USGBC and the global community continue to raise sustainability standards, net zero is becoming the new target for many leaders in green building. The LEED Zero certification was announced at Greenbuild Chicago at 2018 as a complement to the LEED certification that would recognize the net achievements in carbon, energy, water and waste.
The first building that certified the use of LEED Zero was Curitiba's headquarters in the Brazilian consultancy of ecological engineering and construction Petinelli, a member company of the USGBC from 2008. The office building of 440 square meters in Curitiba is located in a converted warehouse and was certified under LEED v4 for Operations and Maintenance in September of 2018. Before the end of December, he also received the LEED Zero certification.
All energy is produced on the site, with an intensity of energy use for the site of only 25 kilowatt hours per square meter per year. A photovoltaic array of 15 kilowatts provides approximately the 125% of the energy needed to run the office of 25 people.
The three locations of Petinelli's offices in Brazil are LEED Platinum, and the firm is committed to achieving LEED Platinum in all future projects for clients.
For the CEO, Guido Petinelli, a LEED AP who was also named a LEED member in 2018, net zero energy and water had been a goal for some time. He calls the Curitiba office a "living laboratory and showroom" of the performance objectives that the firm encourages its clients.
"One of our clients challenged us to achieve LEED Platinum in all our projects," explains Petinelli. "We knew instinctively that if we were going to 'talk' with our customers, it would be better if we 'walked' on our own - such a bold goal attracted the kind of customers who were ready."
Green Building Council Brazil has its own zero energy program, under which the Petinelli office building was also certified. GBC Brazil uses the site's energy as a metric, while LEED Zero uses the energy source, so the only challenge was to determine the source to energy site relationship for Brazil.
However, as an engineering company, Petinelli had that information available. In addition, the project had been positive in energy for more than a year and was able to easily gather the data needed to obtain the LEED Zero Energy certification.
"The performance is easy to measure and even easier to certify," says Petinelli.
Petinelli's next goal is to obtain certification for zero net water, since the office has been out of the water network for almost two years. Brazil offers plenty of sunshine for the Petinelli solar installation, but it also rains 200 days a year in Curitiba, and the company used the lessons learned from designing a Coca-Cola plant to create a system to collect and treat rainwater for get drinking water. own headquarters.
According to Petinelli's experience, customers are enthusiastic about concepts such as net zero because it is a simpler way of thinking about performance that also provides a bold and ambitious goal.
"LEED is more effective when it is aspirational," says Petinelli. "Human nature is wanting to do better, and recognition is a powerful motivator, it's easier for me to convince customers to opt for Platinum, and now LEED Zero, than just certify."