July 23, 2015
The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) has announced its international rankings of the Top 10 Countries for LEED. The Top 10 list highlights countries outside of the U.S. that are making significant strides in sustainable building design, construction and transformation.
Canada ranks number one as the largest user of LEED outside of the U.S. with 26.63 million gross square meters (GSM) of LEED space. There are now over 4814 LEED-registered and LEED-certified projects representing 63.31 million GSM of LEED space in Canada. China (21.97 million GSM), India (13.24 million GSM) and Brazil (5.22 million GSM), three of the four BRIC economies, finished second through fourth on this year’s list, respectively.
The 10 countries that made the list for 2015 represent seven of the world’s 20 largest single-nation economies by gross domestic product (GDP) (China, Germany, Brazil, India, Canada, South Korea and Turkey), as well as six of the top 11 emitters of greenhouse gases (China, India, Germany, South Korea, Canada and Brazil). While Canada tops the list, Brazil and the Republic of Korea have moved up in the rankings and Turkey and Sweden are new to the Top 10 this year. Germany (4.01 million GSM) and Sweden (2.54 million GSM) represent Europe on the list, with Germany finishing sixth and Sweden making the list for the first time in 10th place.
“International demand has grown steadily for tools supporting sustainable economic growth, and it has become increasingly clear that we are reaching a tipping point around environmental sustainability. It is now impossible to view social and economic development as separate issues from a robust sustainability agenda,” said Rick Fedrizzi, CEO and founding chair, USGBC. “The global success of LEED in these countries is a sign that international business leaders and policy makers recognize that a commitment to transforming the built environment is crucial to addressing major environmental challenges. The countries on this list are pushing this commitment forward.”
This is the second year that USGBC has provided rankings on the Top 10 Countries for LEED outside of the U.S. The analysis used to develop the list ranks countries in terms of GSM and numbers of LEED projects to date. The U.S., the birthplace of LEED, is not included in this list but remains the world’s largest market for LEED. The U.S. is the world’s largest economy by GDP as well as the world’s second largest emitter of greenhouse gases.
Every day, nearly 172,000 GSM of space is certified using LEED, and there are currently more than 69,800 commercial and institutional projects representing 1.23 billion GSM of space participating in the green building rating system. An additional 76,500 residential units have been certified under LEED for Homes. LEED projects can now be found in more than 150 countries and territories across the world.