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How green grows Grand Rapids
It's been said that West Michigan is one of the greenest of green construction regions in the U.S., but the latest LEED stats from the U.S. Green Building Council West Michigan are impressive.
The USGBC created the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design standards years ago, which requires third-party verification that a building was designed and built using strategies aimed at improving performance in energy savings, water efficiency, CO2 emissions reduction, improved indoor environmental quality, and stewardship of natural resources.
"There are 217 certified and registered (LEED) buildings in Grand Rapids," said Linda Frey, executive director of the USGBC West Michigan. "That's 30 percent of Michigan's certified and registered buildings. West Michigan actually has 492 — almost 500 in West Michigan. That's 66 percent of the state's (LEED) buildings."
"When it comes to our standing in the nation, we are No. 8 in certified buildings," she added.
"We've also got a strong ecological intelligence in that we have 400 LEED accredited professionals in Grand Rapids alone," added Frey.
LEED can apply to all building types – commercial and institutional, as well as residential.