1. What is TRUE about credit forms submitted via LEED Online?
2. The USGBC is a not for profit organization that promotes the triple bottom line through its:
USGBC has seven Guiding Principles outlined in the 2013-2015 strategic plan. They are:
1. Promote the triple bottom line
2. Establish leadership
3. Reconcile humanity with nature
4. Foster social equity
5. Maintain integrity
6. Be inclusive
7. Exhibit transparency
3. A team is not sure how to set its baseline for outdoor water consumption. Which of the following techniques would not help earn the outdoor water use reduction credit? (CHOOSE 2)
A green/vegetative roof only adds to irrigation requirements, and turf grass requires a lot of irrigation. The other options would help earn this credit.
4. An extermination company is going out of business because building owners are reducing the need for pesticides by:
This credit refers to the rating systems that include an integrative pest management credit and it is unlikely that you will be tested on it. Nevertheless, this information is worthwhile to know, as an Integrated Pest Management Program (IPM) is a method of controlling pests to protect human health and the surrounding environment, and it improves economic returns by ensuring the most effective, least-risk option.
There are credits in LEED For Existing Buildings about Integrated Pest Management Program (IPM)
5. A project is located in northern Ontario where no mass transit infrastructure exists. How can this project still earn LEED points? (CHOOSE 2)
Transportation demand strategies that can reduce single-occupancy vehicle use include:
• Locating a project near public transportation
• Encouraging carpooling
• Encouraging walking or bicycling
• Providing preferred parking for green vehicles
• Discounted transportation passes for buses, rails, ferries, etc.
• Compressed workweeks
These options are more relevant for LEED Existing Buildings Operations and Maintenance rating system
6. The EPACT of 1992 states that the baseline water use of an apartment’s bathroom faucet is:
Gallons per minute (gpm) describes a faucet’s flow rate, while gallons per flush (gpf) refers to a toilet’s water usage. The fact that it states apartment gives away that we are asking about a private faucet’s flow rate.
7. There are many new alternative compliant paths (ACPs) in LEED v4. Which of the following is an ACP for the International Green Construction Code (IgCC) for an entire building?
ASHRAE 189.1 Standard for the Design of High Performance Green Buildings – Except Low-Rise Residential Buildings is a set of technically rigorous requirements, which (like the IgCC), covers criteria including water use efficiency, indoor environmental quality, energy efficiency, materials and resource use, and the building’s impact on its site and its community.
8. A project is located in northern Ontario and wants to take advantage of the area’s environmental assets. Which credit category addresses the needs of this unique location?
Regional Priority credits are bonus points that projects can earn by addressing environmental concerns (water shortages) and environmental assets (abundant sunlight) in their areas.
9. Value engineering can result in reduced level of sustainability or just a more cost-effective approach. Which of the following would be an example of one?
Value engineering (VE) is a review process that selects the lowest life-cycle cost options in design, materials, and processes that achieve the desired level of performance, reliability, and customer satisfaction.
USGBC defines value engineering to mean reducing costs while improving performance.
In this example, the project team is reducing costs by switching to crushed gravel and reducing the Heat Island Effect by using a higher SRI product (thus improving performance). Gravel roads also reduce the amount of rainwater runoff by allowing water to drain through the previous surface.
10. LEED is developed through a consensus-based approach and evolves every few years. What is each LEED rating system composed of?
Within each of the credit categories, there are specific prerequisites that projects must satisfy and a variety of credits that projects can pursue to earn points. The number of points the project earns determines its level of LEED certification.
11. The date is January 1 2022. LEED® v4 is outdated and will be replaced by LEED 2022. What is the committee that is responsible for overseeing a consensus based approach in accordance with LEED protocols?
LEED Technical Team oversees TAGS and other groups. Its responsibilities include coordinating cross-category matters within LEED, reviewing LEED credits and prerequisites for technical validity and recommending improvements, and assessing LEED’s technical rigor, coherency, and achievement trends through a system of performance metrics.
LEED for Homes Provider markets LEED to builders, provides green home rating support services to builders, and trains, coordinates and oversees LEED qualified inspectors and builder support staff.
LEED Consultants assist building owners with LEED certification.
LEED Board of Directors articulates and upholds the vision, values, and mission of USGBC. Directors meet in person three times each year and by teleconference regularly throughout the year.
LEED Technical Advisory Groups – Under the direct management of the LEED Technical Committee, Technical Advisory Groups (TAGs) recommend technical solutions to rating system development and maintenance issues. The groups provide a consistent source of technical advice to LEED committees and working groups regarding credit and prerequisite improvement and supporting tool development. Technical Advisory Groups are structured to include expertise for specific technical issues: Location and Planning, Sustainable Sites, Water Efficiency, Energy and Atmosphere, Materials and Resources, and Indoor Environmental Quality.
LEED Steering Committee is an integrated group of volunteers and staff charged with developing and maintaining LEED as a leadership tool, preserving the integrity of the LEED rating systems, and ensuring the use of the consensus process to evolve LEED in accordance with the mission, guiding principles, and strategic plan of USGBC. A standing committee of USGBC Board of Directors, the LEED Steering Committee is the governing body of all LEED committees.
12. Conventionally which of the following has been primary used to replace CFC-11?
Although not the best option, especially for LEED, HCFCs were the first refrigerants to replace CFCs and are the most commonly used alternatives today.
13. Energy use intensity is metric of how much energy (kWh) a building uses per area (SF). Green buildings generally have how much of a lower energy use intensity than typical buildings?
This comes from an independent study by the New Buildings Institute.
14. How does the USGBC define quality views?
Objects close to the windows and flora, fauna, or sky are the definitions noted in the reference guide.
15. What is the overarching goal of the Materials and Resources credit category?
16. The LEED rating systems are updated on a regular development cycle. What are the basic types of improvements that keep the rating systems current? (Choose 3)
Maintaining the current versions involves the correction and clarification of credit language, as well as fixing more substantive inaccuracies and omissions, which require a more rigorous review and approval process. From this process errata and addenda are issued to supplement the rating systems.
Adaptations – The process for adaptations to existing ratings systems and their credits provides an efficient and streamlined approach for responding to the particular needs, constraints, and opportunities of different project types.
Developing the next version of the rating systems is the comprehensive improvement phase of LEED development that occurs through a periodic evaluation and revision process. This phase includes multiple avenues for stakeholder input, with final approval by USGBC members.
17. Transportation is the second largest contributor of global greenhouse gases at what percentage?
18. The facility manager has installed permanent submeters for a few systems. What will this not help with?
To determine the quality of the water, a water test would need to be done.
19. The integrative process is a crucial part of every credit category and results in environmental protection and money saved. How can the architect work with the contractors to ensure that the contractors purchase the correct materials?
Specifications are created by architects and given to the contractors to ensure that the right quantity and types of materials are purchased. Specifications include drawings of what is to be built. They are legally binding documents.
20. Parking footprints are large contributors to the Heat Island Effect. What is an example of a local ordinance?
Projects should prepare and review a list of the applicable laws, codes, statutes, industry-related standards, and local ordinances relevant to the project.
21. While minimum program requirements are essential to LEED in order to ensure compliance, prerequisites are also mandatory. What do all buildings pursing LEED BD+C: New Construction have to meet?
The minimum program requirements state that a project must:
Minimum program requirement 1. Must be in a permanent location on existing land
Minimum program requirement 2. Must use reasonable LEED boundaries
Minimum program requirement 3. Must comply with project size requirements
22. Which of the following sustainable strategies would not assist with the outdoor water use reduction strategy?
Low-flow water closets or toilets help reduce indoor, not outdoor, water use.
23. Cork ceiling tiles have the ability to be recycled and completely reused for flooring at the end of their life. Which term describes this approach?
Cradle to cradle is a term used in life-cycle analysis to describe a material or product that is recycled into a new product at the end of its useful life. Cradle to cradle is an example of a closed-loop system, while “cradle to gate (or grave)” is a destructive open-loop system that produces waste.
24. An integrated project team is reliant on:
The success of any project depends on the team sticking to the overarching sustainability goals. Building codes would be reviewed first in the process and the design would have to revolve around those mandatory codes so this is not correct when talking about IP. The other options are merely steps that the project team will encounter.
25. Which type of water is permitted as an alternative water source for indoor water use?
The Water Efficiency section is based on an “efficiency first” approach to water conservation. As a result, each prerequisite first looks at reductions in potable water use. The WE credits then recognize the use of alternative, non-potable sources of water. For the Indoor Water Use credit, the alternative water sources permitted include: municipally supplied reclaimed water, greywater, rainwater, stormwater, condensate, foundation dewatering water, used process water, and reverse osmosis reject water.
Water sources that are untreated, and thus ineligible for this credit include: raw water from naturally occurring surface bodies of water, streams, rivers, groundwater, well water, seawater, etc.
26. Looking at the economic side of the triple bottom line, what is the most significant savings that results from water efficiency?
A lot of energy is used to heat, cool, and distribute water within a building, with water heating in commercial buildings alone accounting for 15% of total energy use (CBECS). Reducing the quantity of water used (increasing efficiency) has a direct impact on the amount of energy used, and thus the total maintenance costs.
27. How would a larger parking lot impact the Water Efficiency Category?
There is no need to irrigate an impervious surface, such as a parking lot.
28. Apple Inc. promotes an open-office concept, but also wants to use daylighting for entire floors, which has a number of trade-offs. How can they ensure that everyone receives adequate light?
Different areas of the project will receive different levels of lighting throughout the day. The best way to make sure all occupants have quality lighting is to have a zoned system that adjusts lighting levels based on the amount of daylight coming in. People in darker areas would have more artificial light than those in the sunnier areas.
29. Northeastern University is attempting to create a LEED Platinum® laboratory for its engineering department. What task must the integrative project team complete?
Before any design takes place, all team members are gathered and every issue is hashed out. Each team member has a specific expertise, and brings specific information and data . The team then analyzes the data and compares notes in order to identify synergies between different systems.
This is a cyclical process of researching, analyzing, and meeting to continually refine solutions, with the goal of achieving the greatest cost effectiveness and environmental performance.
30. How does open space help promote sustainability? (CHOOSE 2)
31. A new building is being constructed in the hot climate of Mexico City. The green building design includes a vegetative roof and an air-tight envelope to reduce air changes per hour and increase building efficiency. What will need to be considered due to this design?
A negative result of having a tight building envelope is that the air inside becomes stagnant. Increased ventilation needs to be implemented to bring in more fresh air, thus improving air quality. However, it should be noted that increasing fresh air ventilation more energy is needed to treat it.
32. A project has reduced its water consumptions by 65% from EPA’s baseline. The owner can now ensure a healthy work environment by monitoring 2 of the following: (CHOOSE 2)
Ventilation takes fresh outdoor air and pushes it inside. Monitors on the outside measure how much air the system is moving, making sure it is an adequate amount. Carbon dioxide levels are associated with the quality of the air in a space. If there is too much CO2, the system can increase airflow to improve quality.
33. LEED v4 has seven Impact Categories to accomplish the goals of the LEED rating system and ensure sustainability. How do the Impact Categories work towards a more sustainable building?
For LEED to be successful in driving the market toward certain priorities while still maintaining flexibility, credits that significantly contribute to accomplishing the system goals of the seven Impact Categories are given more emphasis by being assigned more points.
34. The Water Efficiency prerequisite requires an indoor water usage reduction of 20% from a baseline calculated from what?
When developing indoor water use baselines or design cases, the calculations are based on the number of occupants in the building, and how much they use the fixtures.
35. Which LEED Rating system has performance periods?
Performance periods are used to compare current building performance to its past.
36. During the integrative process, a team is trying to find the best strategy to protect and/or restore the habitat on a previously developed site. What is one common strategy that helps lead to this credit?
On-site restoration involves restoring compacted soils and revegetating. The others help with rainwater management or increasing open space.
37. A LEED consultant is reviewing project site plans and documentation prior to submitting the project for review. What has the lowest priority in building design?
Don’t forget that projects must first meet local and regional codes (ex. building, plumbing, and fire protection codes), as they are law and LEED is voluntary.
38. The Integrative Process is used to identify synergies, which result in short and long term cost savings. What is also true about the IP? (CHOOSE 2)
Note – the Integrative Process is based on the Integrative Process (IP) ANSI Consensus National Standard Guide 2.0 for Design and Construction of Sustainable Buildings and Communities.
39. Off-gassing of contaminants is a major degrader of the indoor air quality of a building. What products need to be analyzed to determine their VOC content?
VOCs are substances that vaporize at room temperature and can cause health problems. VOCs off-gas from many materials, including adhesives, sealants, carpets, particleboard, and paints. Granite is naturally occurring, with no VOCs. With acoustic insulation and desks, it depends on the materials used to make them.
40. The existing TD office towers in downtown Toronto, which were constructed with single-pane windows, is retrofitted to include double-pane glass. This can lead to:
The design of the building envelope (including the glazing) impacts the energy demand of the building. Double-pane glazing is a better insulator than single-pane glazing.
It is important to note that while more glazing (windows) increases daylight, the heat gain from allowing more light in may increase HVAC loads.
Energy efficiency refers to less energy being used to accomplish the same amount of work, which is not the case here.
Thermal control is achieved with thermostats and/or operable windows
Thermal comfort could have been an answer, but that is not an option.
Increased energy efficiency – is incorrect because the term efficiency is used for active system improvements (lighting, HVAC etc..)
Decreased energy demand is correct because this is a passive design improvement through better insulation
41. Which of the following is an example of greywater?
Greywater is defined by the UPC and the other options are all stormwater.
42. Who is the stakeholder on a project team responsible for verifying the performance and testing of building systems?
43. For the Building Disclosure and Optimization credit that looks at the ingredients of materials, which standards would help earn points? (CHOOSE 2)
The Building Disclosure and Optimization credit category includes the following credits: Environmental Product Declarations (MRc2), Sourcing of Raw Materials (MRc3), and Material Ingredients (MRc4). The goal of this category is to further promote responsible material sourcing and the avoidance of harmful chemicals in building products.
Within Material Ingredients (MRc4), there are 3 criteria, each awarding one point. Projects are rewarded through Material Ingredient Reporting, Ingredient Optimization, and Supply Chain Optimization. Ingredient Optimization requires 25% (by cost) of the total value of permanently installed products to be products that have their material ingredient optimization documented through certain standards. These standards include GreenScreen v1.2 Benchmark, Cradle to Cradle Certified, International Alternative Compliance Path – REACH Optimization, and USGBC approved program.
44. A municipality has been losing a lot of tourism due to its coal power plant and the detrimental environmental effects associated with it. What can the city use to financially incentivize a developer to develop green buildings? (CHOOSE 3)
For more information about different incentives please read here: http://leadinggreen.ca/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/Green-Building-Incentive-Strategies.pdf
Structural incentives include:
• Expedited review / permitting process
• Density and height bonuses
Financial incentives include:
• Tax credits
• Fee reductions / waivers
• Revolving loan funds (low-interest loans)
Non-financial incentives include:
• Technical assistance
• Marketing assistance
45. What type of energy is used by products that are powered by means of an ordinary AC plug?
Plug load is the electrical current drawn by all equipment connected via wall outlets.
Process energy is the power that resources consume in support of processes other than conditioning spaces and maintaining comfort and amenities for occupants of a building. This may include refrigeration equipment, cooking and food preparation, clothes washing, and other major support appliances.
Unregulated load (aka process load) is the load on a building resulting from the consumption or release of process energy.
46. A project team has decided to take an integrative approach for the design and construction of their new office project. The success of an integrated project team is reliant on:
Commitment to the sustainability goals is integral to the integrative approach and its success depends on sticking to the goals set up at the start of the project.
Building code is the first item to be reviewed, as the design revolves around those mandatory codes, but they do not determine project success.
Meeting the project schedule should not be used as a primary measure of success for integrative approaches, as it is typical for projects to be on and off schedule
The choice of materials used does not determine the effectiveness of a project team.
47. There is a prerequisite for LEED BD+C projects in Sustainable Sites that ensures the environment is protected by: (CHOOSE 3)
The Construction Activity Pollution Prevention prerequisite (SSp1) involves minimizing environmental impacts during the construction process. Construction can result in: the loss of topsoil, water pollution due to runoff that carries pollutants and sediments to receiving waters, and airborne dust that causes environmental and health issues. (Construction also leads to the loss of nutrients, soil compaction, and decreased biodiversity, as well as the degradation of water bodies and aquatic habitats).
Scope 1 and 2 emissions are offset through green power and carbon offsets.
48. LEED projects cover a wide range of building types and occupants. How does LEED define visitors (transients)? (Choose 2)
People are classified based on their occupancy type, which can include employees, peak transients, and residents. Peak transients are can be students, volunteers, visitors, customers, etc. Most credits group users into two categories: regular building occupants and visitors.
Many kinds of people use a typical LEED building, and the mix varies by project type. Most credits group users into two categories: regular building occupants and visitors. In calculations, occupant types are typically counted in two ways: Daily Averages and Peak Totals. Occupancy counts are used in the LT (for bicycle facilities, reduce parking footprint, and green vehicles), SS (for healthcare– direct exterior access), WE (for indoor water use), and EQ (for thermal comfort and interior lighting) credit categories.
49. What two standards are found in many building codes? (Choose 2)
The International Code Council (ICC) develops the model codes and standards that are used in the design, build, and compliance process to construct safe, sustainable, affordable, and resilient structures. Most U.S. communities and many global markets choose the International Code as their default building code.
The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) is responsible for 300 codes and standards that are designed to minimize the risk and effects of fire by establishing criteria for building, processing, design, service, and installation in the United States, as well as many other countries.
The National Electrical Code (NEC) is a regionally adoptable standard for the safe installation of electrical wiring and equipment in the United States. It is part of the National Fire Code’s series published by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA).
The International Code Council, International Plumbing Code (IPC) is a comprehensive model plumbing code that sets minimum regulations for plumbing systems and components to protect life, health, and safety of building occupants and the public. The IPC is available for adoption by jurisdictions ranging from states to towns, and is currently adopted on the state or local level in 35 states in the U.S.
The International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials (IAPMO), Uniform Plumbing Code (UPC) and Uniform Mechanical Code (UMC) have been protecting the public’s health and safety for more than eighty-five years by working with governments and industries to implement comprehensive plumbing and mechanical systems around the world.
All commercial projects in the United States must comply with the accessibility guidelines of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
50. The Location and Transportation credit category awards points for selecting a site within a walkable proximity to a number of “diverse uses”. Which is not a “diverse use”?
A “diverse use” is a distinct, officially recognized space that falls into one of the following categories: food retail, services, community retail, civic & community uses, and education facilities.
It has a stationary postal address and is publicly available, and does not include automated facilities such as ATMs, vending machines, and touchscreens.
51. Which of the following statements is TRUE regarding occupant surveys?
Consideration should be given to implementing an occupant comfort survey and complaint response system to collect anonymous responses about thermal comfort, acoustics, indoor air quality, lighting levels, building cleanliness, and other occupant comfort issues. The survey must be collected from a representative sample of building occupants (at least 30% of the total occupants), and it must include an assessment of overall satisfaction with building performance and an identification of any comfort-related problems.
Survey results are documented and corrective actions must be taken to address comfort issues identified through the surveys.
52. Which of the following decreases as a project’s timeline progresses?
In a typical project, it is expensive to make changes late in the construction phases, and green features are often value engineered out of the project This is a why the Integrative Process is an invaluable design approach that can save money through collaboration with key stakeholders at an early stage in the project.
53. A manufacturing company is trying to determine if its roofing shingles comply with LEED requirements. Which factors help in this? (CHOOSE 2)
These are the two key factors in determining the SRI of a surface and its ability to reject heat
54. Renewable energy purchased as a carbon offset must meet which of the following criteria?
For the Green Power and Carbon Offsets credit category (EAc7), a project must purchase 35% of the building’s electricity consumption for at least 2 years. The project team can purchase renewable energy certificates (RECs) (or tradable renewable certificates (TRCs)), carbon offsets, or renewable power from a Green-e certified provider. Green-e is a certification program for renewable energy producers. LEED typically recognizes renewable energy if it has been certified by the Center for Resource Solution or meets the Green-e requirements. Green-e Climate certification is for qualifying carbon offsets for LEED.
55. A LEED consultant is reviewing calculations required to manage rainwater and reduce irrigation needs on the site. What information is required?
The consultant must know how much rain falls in order to manage it and use it for irrigation. Evapotranspiration is useful too, but not just evaporation.
56. The Integrative Process was previously just a principle of sustainability, but with LEED V4, it is now actually worth a point. Which of the following demonstrates a team using the Integrative Process concept of the Systems Thinking approach?
Metrics and measuring of success are part of the integrative process. The integrative process continues until the building’s end-of-life—not at project handover.
57. Looking at the economic side of the triple bottom line, which of the following factors impact the cost of LEED certification?
The square footage of the project is the primary cost consideration for LEED certification. Remember certification and registration fees are not the same. Generally, the bigger the building, the higher the cost and the smaller the building the lower the cost as compared to the other options here.
58. In LEED v4, credits have been streamlined and numerous standards have been introduced in the Materials and Resources Category. Which group of credits is Environmental Product Declarations under?
While Environmental Product Declarations are meant to reduce the life-cycle impact of the building, that is not the name of the credit category. Environmental Product Declarations (MRc2) is a credit under Building Product Disclosure and Optimization. MRc2 rewards teams for selecting products from manufacturers who have verified they have improved environmental life-cycle impacts.
59. A development team bought a brownstone house. What would be the best way to select windows?
Embodied energy is an accounting methodology that aims to find the total energy consumed over a product’s entire life-cycle. The life-cycle includes raw material extraction, transport, manufacture, assembly, installation, disassembly, deconstruction and/or decomposition.
For example, consider a clay brick. Its embodied energy includes the energy used to extract the clay, transport it to the brick-works, form the brick, fire it in the kiln, transport it to the building site and put the brick into place. It also includes all the indirect energy required, which is all the energy required to manufacture the equipment and materials used in manufacturing a brick (e.g. trucks, kilns, mining equipment, etc.).
When selecting a building material, one must consider the material’s performance, adaptability, and its embodied energy. there are three things that should be considered:
1. Performance – How will the material perform compared to other alternatives? Consider insulation—should the project use foam insulation, batt insulation, or something else for the best insulating properties?
2. Adaptability – Can the insulation be reused in the future when the building is at the end of its life or will it need to be disposed of?
3. Embodied energy – How much energy went into manufacturing each type of insulation being considered. Was the insulation sourced close by or was manufactured in an environmentally unfriendly plant and then shipped from overseas?
60. A project is attempting to meet the EQ credit for enhanced air quality. Which of the following would be well suited for an entryway system?
Stone and wood are not well suited for entryways, nor are materials shipped far distances, contributing to environmental pollution. LEED entryways should consist of grills, grates, or mats to help clean people’s shoes off as they walk in. This keeps dust/dirt/contaminants out. The low VOC material is the best choice.
61. What aspect of the Environmental Product Declarations credit is required to know if it leads to LEED points or not?
For LEED, a product must be a permanently installed building product in order to be eligible for points in the EPD credits. A permanently installed building product is defined as “an item that arrives on the project site either as a finished element ready for installation or as a component to another item assembled on-site.” – USGBC
Examples include steel, wood, drywall, and carpet.
Things that are not considered products that count towards the MR credits include: scaffolding, concrete formwork, and anything temporary.
62. According to LEED, who defines the site’s open space requirements?
The intent of open space is to provide the building’s occupants with opportunities to connect with the outdoors, where they exhibit improved well-being and productivity. Open spaces also provide many positive environmental benefits—habitat creation, linked habitat corridors in urban areas, increased rainwater infiltration, and a reduced Heat Island Effect.
In LEED v4, the Open Space credit is no longer tied to the presence of a local zoning code—the same open space requirement applies to all projects, which is why open spaces are linked to the integrative process. However, this does not relieve the project from complying with local zoning ordinances if the ordinance is more stringent.
63. A company is looking at passive and mechanical methods of lowering the building’s energy load, such as:
This strategy maximizes a building’s ability to use natural lighting and natural heating, thus decreasing its energy requirements and its energy load.
64. Which of the following is not from a source of alternative or renewable energy?
Demand Response (DR) Programs involve utility companies contacting consumers with a request to cut back on their power draw during a curtailment event (e.g. severe weather, heavy load on the grid, utility company maintenance). DR is simply a contract agreement between the utility company and consumer (usually large commercial or industrial) and not a form of alternative or renewable energy.
Renewable energy production is the generation of onsite renewable energy, which protects projects from energy price volatility and reliance on the grid. It also allows the project to achieve net zero energy consumption, meaning the total amount of energy used by the building on an annual basis is roughly equal to the amount of renewable energy created onsite. Allowable renewable energy sources include: biofuel, wave and tidal energy, wind, low-impact hydroelectricity, geothermal, photovoltaic, and solar thermal.
Renewable energy certificates (RECs) are tradable, non-tangible energy commodities. RECs represent proof that 1 megawatt-hour (MWh) of electricity was generated from an eligible renewable energy resource (renewable electricity). Green power may be purchased either directly or indirectly from utility providers, and while some providers actually deliver green energy through the grid, many purchase RECs instead.
Carbon offsets are reductions in emissions of carbon dioxide or greenhouse gases in order to offset an emission produced elsewhere. In the voluntary market, individuals, companies, and governments purchase carbon offsets to mitigate their own greenhouse gas emissions from transportation, electricity use, and other sources. One carbon offset represents the reduction of one metric ton of carbon dioxide or its equivalent in other greenhouse gases.
RECs allow buildings that use non-renewable power to create market demand for renewable energy. Carbon offsets allow buildings to fund activities that decrease carbon emissions or remove carbon.
65. When does commissioning take place?
Commissioning is the process of verifying and documenting that a building’s systems and assemblies are installed, tested, operated, and maintained to meet the owner’s project requirements. The systems cannot be commissioned until they are installed, thus the process usually takes place prior to occupancy, when the building is substantially completed. Substantial completion means the building’s necessities are in place, for example, all of the HVAC systems are in and the building has water and power. Extras like painting, carpets, and tile don’t need to be in place for this phase.
66. What provides legal protection of the ozone layer in the U.S.?
The Montreal Protocol is an international treaty designed to protect the ozone layer. The treaty was entered into force on January 1, 1989. As part of the United States’ commitment to implementing the Montreal Protocol, the U.S. Congress amended America’s Clean Air Act, for protection of the ozone layer.
The Kyoto Protocol is an international agreement that sets binding emission reduction targets.
The U.S. Department of Energy deals with energy, environmental, and nuclear systems and industries.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is the federal agency primarily responsible for the management of air quality and atmospheric protection issues within the U.S.
67. In the site selection credit, which 2 governing bodies discourage developing on sensitive habitats? (CHOOSE 2)
Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is used for prime farmland.
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is used for wetlands.
The International Society of Arboriculture is used for tree conditions on-site.
These are the 2 options for sensitive habitats
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has a list of threatened and endangered species.
The NatureServe Heritage Program – NatureServe classifies species and ecological communities
68. In November 2016, LEED v4 was released after being delayed a year and was renamed from LEED 2012 after an open consensus process. Which of the following ensures this process stays intact?
Adaptations to the existing version allow for both specific space types and international projects to be addressed through the creation of credit adaptations. New paths can be introduced in existing credits to meet the needs of projects that would otherwise be unable to utilize the requirements in LEED.
Feedback from LEED credit reviewers is part of the project review process, not LEED development.
LEED is developed by USGBC member-based volunteer committees, subcommittees, and working groups, in conjunction with staff. LEED development follows a structure that includes a balanced representation of stakeholders and management of conflict of interest, to ensure that the development of LEED is transparent and consensus-based. The LEED committee structure balances market needs and constraints with consistency and technical rigor in the development and improvement of the credits to ensure the quality and integrity of the LEED brand. The balloting process of new versions reinforces the open consensus process. The appeal procedures that are implemented by the USGBC further support the consensus process and ensure the fair treatment of affected stakeholders. All of these measures are essential to protecting and enhancing the integrity, authority, and value of LEED.
Government regulations and Board of Directors issues shareholder voting rights are not correct.
69. Where would it be appropriate to use the USGBC member logo for LeadingGreen, a member company of the USGBC?
Use of the USGBC member logo is limited to member companies. The USGBC does not certify or endorse any products, and thus, the member logo may not be used to indicate endorsement for a product. A member company could use the logo in its letterhead for marketing purposes.
70. What does every credit category begin within the LEED reference guides?
The reference guide is designed to elaborate on, and work in conjunction with the rating system. It serves as a roadmap, describing the steps for meeting and documenting credit requirements and offering advice on best practices. Each credit category begins with an overview that discusses sustainability and market factors specific to the category.
For each prerequisite and credit, readers will then find the following sections: Intent & Requirements; Behind the Intent; Step-by-Step Guidance; Further Explanation; Required Documentation; Related Credit Tips; Changes from LEED 2009, Referenced Standards; Exemplary Performance; and Definitions. (Is this necessary -> Exemplary Performance identifies the threshold that must be met to earn an Exemplary Performance point. EP points are not available for any prerequisite, and not all credits.)
71. Which LEED rating system has precertification?
LEED for Core and Shell is used when the project owner/developer controls only the design and construction of the building’s core and shell (i.e. the mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems, as well as the envelope). Once a project is registered as a LEED BD+C: Core and Shell project, the project team may apply for precertification. The precertification is a formal recognition by the USGBC, given to a candidate project for which the developer/owner has established a goal to develop a LEED BD+C: Core and Shell building. When precertification is granted, the developer/owner can market the building’s proposed green features to potential tenants and financiers.
72. Open space can contribute to many credits in multiple credit categories. Select the example of quality open space:
A walking/jogging trail around a natural wetland encourages social interaction and physical activity, so it counts as open space. The other options are either off-site or exclusive.
73. Which of the following LEED Impact Categories aims at supporting local economies and strengthening the green building industry through supply chain support?
The Build a Greener Economy Impact Category components are:
• Enhance the Value Proposition of Green Building
• Strengthen the Green Building Industry and Supply Chain
• Promote Innovation and Integration of Green Building Products and Services
• Incentivize Long Term Growth and Investment Opportunities
• Support Local Economies
74. How can satisfying the credit for High Priority Site benefit the community?
A high priority site can help to revitalize the neighbourhood, otherwise derelict sites would be left untouched and risk polluting surrounding areas.
75. Evaluation of the economic performance of a product over its life-cycle is useful in determining using which procedure?
The key term here is economic performance (cost) over the life-cycle.
76. What contributes to Heat Island Effect?
The term ‘heat island’ refers to the difference in temperature between developed and undeveloped areas. Urban areas experience higher temperatures due to a number of factors including insufficient ventilation due to tall buildings and narrow streets. A high SRI roof would be good at rejecting solar heat, thus keeping the area cooler. There is not enough information to determine if the steep slope roof is good or bad for the HIE, but it is always better than a low slope roof (ex. a steep slope roof made of black asphalt shingles would be bad). Reducing hardscapes is a method to reduce the HIE, so the turf grass fields are not necessarily contributing to it. Shade from small trees does not contribute to the HIE, as shade is always good, no matter what.
77. A developer has selected to construct their headquarters beside a protected wetland. The goals of the project are to reduce energy consumption, mitigate the Heat Island Effect, ensure the buildings occupants will be healthy, and protect the wetland’s habitat. How can the developer accomplish this?
An early site assessment is the only item here that can impact the 4 project goals, as the others are only targeting specific credits.
78. LeadingGreen’s enormous parking lot utilizes constructed shading towers equipped with PV panels to generate electricity for vehicle recharging stations. Which credits would be impacted by this? (CHOOSE 2)
Solar shading is a strategy to reduce the Heat Island Effect and using that electricity for EVs satisfies a part of the Green Vehicles credit.
79. Adaptive reuse, selecting to build infill, and regenerative design are all items encouraged in LEED and green building in general. What is an example of regenerative design?
Regenerative design is “sustainable plans for built environments that improve existing conditions. Regenerative design goes beyond reducing impacts to create positive change in the local and global environment.” – USGBC
By generating more electricity than the project uses, the system is considered regenerative.
80. What does not affect a project’s certification fees?
Prerequisites and MPRs must be met regardless so they are not the answer.
The actual number of credits pursued has no affect on the certification fees paid to the GBCI and its reviewers
81. The USGBC requires reporting different building parameters at least every 5 years to increase transparency, as well as to:
The USGBC collects water and energy usage from LEED projects. This information helps the development of future versions of LEED rating systems.
82. LeadingGreen wants to establish green building goals across the entire design while using stakeholders’ expertise. What workshop helps achieve this?
A charrette is an intense collaborative session in which participants make a concerted effort to solve a problem or plan a design. The charrette is one of the first things that should occur for a new project. During the initial charrette, the project team will:
• Decide what rating system to use
• Determine the projects green building goals
• Set a preliminary rating using the LEED Project Checklist
A charrette should be held no later than the design development phase and preferably during schematic design.
83. The greatest threat to global warming potential is presented by which group of refrigerants?
Gases that trap heat in the atmosphere are called greenhouse gases. LEED addresses the two main threats to the environment, posed by refrigerants: their ozone depletion potential (ODP) and their global warming potential (GWP). The primary list of refrigerants, and their properties, are:
• CFC (ChloroFluorCarbons) – Stable and long life, with greatest ODP caused production to be banned in this country
• HCFC (HydoChloroFluorCarbons) – Stable and short life, not as high ODP as CFCs, allowing for a phase-out plan
• HFC (HydoFluorCarbons) – Negligible impact on the ozone layer, but significant GWP
• Halocarbons – Used in the cells of foamed insulation and fire-fighting systems.
• Natural Refrigerants – Carbon Dioxide (CO2), Water (H2O), Ammonia (NH3), Hydrocarbons (HC), Air
(78% N2; 21% O2; 1% H2O2; + trace gases). The Fundamental Refrigerant Management prerequisite
addresses ODP. The Enhanced Refrigerant Management credit addresses
both ODP and GWP
84. If a manufacturing company recycles used orange juice cartons for flooring, what would this result in? (CHOOSE 2)
Carpets made from virgin materials and recycled content have similar costs and durability performance as new ones. Using materials that contain recycled content reduces virgin materials use.
Post-consumer recycled content is defined by ISO 14021 as the percentage of material in a product that was consumer waste. The recycled material was generated by household, commercial, industrial, or institutional end-users and can no longer be used for its intended purpose. It includes returns of materials from the distribution chain. Examples include construction and demolition debris, materials collected through recycling programs, discarded products (e.g., furniture, cabinetry, decking), and landscaping waste (e.g., leaves, grass clippings, tree trimmings).
85. Employee health is addressed in two categories, EQ and LT. Which of the following would earn LEED point(s)?
A bicycle network directly translates to LEED points. In the credit for Green Vehicles, preferred parking must be created as well as a percentage of those parking spaces equipped with EV charging stations.
86. Which one of the following does not need to be considered when setting aside a location for the storage and collection of recyclables?
87. A major focus in LEED is to ensure that a building is located on a site that is near diverse uses, in a dense area and has developmental constraints. Which credit category specifically encourages that?
Smart Location and Linkage credits promote walkable neighborhoods with efficient transportation options and open space, and is in LEED ND only.
Sustainable Sites credits encourage strategies that minimize the impact on ecosystems and water resources.
88. Which strategy can the project team suggest if the building owner wants to maintain ongoing energy efficiency and performance?
Building automation systems (BAS) use computer controls to monitor and control building subsystems for maximum operating efficiency and reporting.
There are additional options that can identify problems that should be addressed by the facilities manager:
• Building-level energy metering supports energy management and identifies opportunities for additional
energy savings by tracking building-level energy use.
• System-level energy metering supports energy management and identifies opportunities for additional
energy savings by tracking building-level and system-level energy use.
Ongoing commissioning (aka recommissioning) is a type of commissioning that occurs when a building that has already been commissioned undergoes another commissioning process. The decision to recommission may be triggered by a change in building use or ownership, an onset of operational problems, or some other need. Ideally, a plan for ongoing commissioning is established as part of a new building’s original commissioning process or an existing building’s retrocommissioning process.
Enhanced commissioning is an extension to the original commissioning process that, among other things, reviews building operations 10 months after substantial completion and involves the development of an ongoing commissioning plan.
Recommissioning (aka retrocommissioning) is the application of the commissioning process to existing buildings.
89. Production of CFCs are banned under the Montreal protocol and HCFCs will be phased out by when?
Hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) are a class of ozone-depleting chemicals currently used primarily as refrigerants and foam blowing agents in place of CFCs. Although their ozone-depleting potential is less than that of CFCs, the global warming potential of HCFCs is quite high. Developed countries are already reducing their consumption of HCFCs to meet their phase out obligations under the Montreal Protocol, which calls for a 90% reduction from baseline by 2015 and a 100% reduction by 2030.
90. Innovert Real Estate Investment Trust is reviewing its current portfolio and notices an immense amount of water being consumed in its older building stock, which is costing a lot due to increasing water prices. It is cost-prohibitive to replace all the plumbing, so the project team suggested alternative approaches to reduce potable water. Which are the most efficient ways to reduce potable water?
The best option here is to install new aerators to reduce outdoor potable water usage. All other options are incorrect and reducing cooling tower cycles = increase in water usage.
On a more general note, the purchasing plan requires that all new fixtures be WaterSense labeled. Because these items are new, we know that these items will reduce the amount of potable water used in lavatories or showers.
91. How can a civil engineering team properly grade the site and determine the baseline measurement for outdoor water use on a project?
A water budget is a site-specific method of calculating an allowable amount of water to be used by the landscape and then designing the landscape to meet this budget. The budget takes into account plant type, water needs of the plants, irrigation system design, and applied water that the landscape receives either by irrigation or by precipitation.
92. Smart growth is a commonly used term to describe a best practice. Which of the following does not comply with this best management practice?
Smart growth is developing in areas near transportation, housing, and jobs in order to leave open spaces and farmland free from development. In addition, a site far away from existing development is probably a greenfield.
93. A facility manager is looking for information on how to improve IAQ throughout the life of the building. Which of the following strategies will support this goal?
This question is easy if you identify that all but one option must be completed prior to occupancy, and thus are not a part of the Operation and Maintenance that a facility manager would perform. Part of green cleaning involves including the custodians in the integrative process to get their input and to work together to create goals and procedures for reducing indoor contaminants from cleaning chemicals.
There are credits in LEED For Existing Buildings for green cleaning
94. The most significant difference between a conventional linear design process and an Integrative Process is?
The integrative process is an iterative, collaborative approach that involves a project’s stakeholders throughout the process, from visioning through completion of construction and during building operation.
Both involve all project team members, however the Integrative Process involves all team members meeting as a group at least once. In conventional design, it is not necessary for a team member to engage with all other members (ex. the landscape designer may never speak to the plumber).
95. Quadrel Development Inc. is beginning their first LEED project and has contacted LeadingGreen for some consulting services. What obstacles will Quadrel face?
Some of the obstacles teams face with people new to green building include:
• The costs and time to hold meetings
• Resistance to green goals
• Resistance to the integrative process
• Not being familiar with the approaches suggested
• Getting people to use the modeling tools
96. LeadingGreen just signed a contract with the City of Toronto that allows the company to work out of an historic building. How can the city achieve carbon neutrality for the building?
97. The LEED rating systems must continue to push the envelope and to ensure that it keeps improving over time. Who develops the ongoing improvements?
LEED is developed by USGBC member-based volunteer committees, subcommittees, and working groups in conjunction with staff. LEED development follows a structure that includes a balanced representation of stakeholders and management of conflict of interest, to ensure that the development of LEED is transparent and consensus-based.
The LEED committee structure balances market needs and constraints with consistency and technical rigor in the development and improvement of the credits within LEED, to ensure the quality and integrity of the LEED brand. The balloting process of new versions with USGBC membership reinforces the open consensus process.
Under the direct management of the LEED Technical Committee, Technical Advisory Groups (TAGs) recommend technical solutions to rating system development and maintenance issues.
98. Which of the following options is not addressed in the minimum program requirement (MPR) in LEED?
Each LEED rating system has 3 identical MPRs. The project in question must be in a permanent location on existing land, it must use reasonable LEED boundaries, and it must comply with minimum project size requirements (GFA).
99. How can an infill site positively affect the economic side of the triple bottom line?
An infill site would already be connected to existing utility lines, streets, and other infrastructure, thus saving money that would otherwise be spent developing these items.
100. A project development team just purchased an entire city on the coast of Oregon. Which of the following is one way that the project developer could successfully complete ‘adaptive reuse’?
Adaptive reuse is the practice of redesigning a structure for a use that is significantly different from the building’s original use. The office/apartment option is an example of design for flexibility.
101. A project is under construction in Manhattan and has a near zero lot line, which makes it difficult to manage rainwater. What can this project do?
Projects on an urban site with a zero lot line (the building footprint is on the site limit) will have to use green infrastructure (GI) (ex. vegetative roofs) and low-impact development (LID) rainwater management strategies (harvesting rainwater) since there is no land.
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