Originally posted on Plasma Air International

Green Globes is emerging as a more flexible, faster to complete and affordable alternative to the LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) program. It has earned this market perception without undermining the very integrity of its certification, boasting a similarly structured rating system and producing evaluations that truly represent buildings’ sustainability. Moreover, with recent criticisms about how the LEED certification disregards context and performance, findings that suggest it has little to no impact on worker productivity, and a revenue-generation strategy focused on certifying LEED Accredited Professionals to walk applicants through its complicated certification process, Green Globes has rapidly gained popularity amongst architects, engineers, building owners, and even entire cities.

Green Globes offers a point-based, four-level certification system just like LEED. However, unlike LEED, it offers a more user-friendly and flexible certification system that is web-based for ultimate convenience. While LEED certification typically requires the costly assistance of a LEED Accredited Professional, individuals who select Green Globes work directly with an assigned assessor who guides them through the entire application and certification process. Moreover, they do not have to wait a month for a response and are provided with an on-site visit from the Green Globes assessor, making the certification process faster to complete than LEED. Green Globes is also more cost-effective.

According to a 2014 study completed by Drexel University Professor Jeffrey Beard, Green Globes’ certification process is significantly less expensive to conduct than LEED certification. Beard’s research compared intrinsic hard and soft costs as well as optional costs arising from the implementation of each green building rating system (LEED and Green Globes) within the university’s Papadakis Integrated Sciences building. While LEED’s price is based on a project’s square footage, Green Globes charges a flat rate for its services. This enabled the university to save approximately $1.00 per square foot on its 130,000-square-foot Sciences building. Furthermore, the university’s study indicated internal staff time costs for administering both systems were $116,000 more expensive for LEED. The report also showed higher aggregate green building costs for LEED – nearly 15 percent more expensive than Green Globes. Additionally, the Green Globe certification process costs about half the LEED process. In 2008, LEED registration cost between $900 to $3,000 and the certification roughly $1,875 to $20,000. Today, a Green Globes self-assessment costs $500, with certification running between $3,000 and $6,000. Cost comparisons clearly indicate that Green Globes is the more cost-effective option.

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