Living Building Challenge version 2 released
Photo: Gregory Edwards
- Limits to growth – only projects built on greyfields or brownfields are allowed.
- Urban agriculture – The minimum level of dedicated agricultural space is based on a project’s Floor Area Ratio (FAR) with only the densest urban environments being exempted from a mandatory urban agriculture space.
- Habitat exchange – A 1:1 ratio of developed space to protected habitat must be met.
- Car-free living – The focus should be on pedestrian-oriented communities, both for commercial and residential projects.
- Net-zero water – Water must come through onsite precipitation capture or closed-loop water systems.
- Ecological water flow – Discharged water should either be captured for reuse onsite or managed in a natural way.
- Net-zero energy – All of a project’s energy needs must be met through onsite renewable energy generation.
- Civilized environment – All occupied spaces must have working windows.
- Healthy air – A variety of measures must be met to ensure that indoor air quality is at a premium level.
- Biophilia – Six different design elements need to be implemented in every 2,000 square-meters of project space.
- Red List – None of the materials on the Red List may be used in a project seeking Living Building Challenge certification.
- Embodied Carbon Footprint – Carbon offsets need to be used.
- Responsible Industry – FSC or onsite harvested wood (cleared purely for construction purposes) needs to be used.
- Appropriate Sourcing – Locally sourced materials are optimal however the Living Building Challenge program designates the maximum source distance for a variety of material types.
- Conservation + Reuse – Waste reduction and landfill diversion requirements are strong, including a 100% diversion rate for soil and biomass.
- Human Scale + Humane Places – This requirement focuses on creating a human-scaled place as opposed to an automobile-scaled place.
- Democracy + Social Justice – All areas should be universally accessible. This petal subset also covers the importance of affordable housing.
- Rights to Nature – This covers the right to fresh air, sunlight, and natural waterways.
- Beauty + Spirit – In addition to all of the above-listed criteria, projects must have elements that are meant solely for human aesthetic pleasure.
- Inspiration + Education – What better place to learn about a living building than inside one? The Living Building Challenge requires onsite, publicly accessible educational materials.
The opinions expressed by MNN Bloggers and those providing comments are theirs alone, and do not reflect the opinions of MNN.com. While we have reviewed their content to make sure it complies with our Terms and Conditions, MNN is not responsible for the accuracy of any of their information.