LEED Interpretation Sets Standard for Recycled Content

The U.S. Green Building Council released a LEED Interpretation Ruling (LIR) for recycled content. It sets the standard for recycled content claims and documentation for LEED projects looking to achieve points for MRc4 Recycled Content. As stated in the formal LIR, “An average recycled content claim, especially one that incorporates multiple product lines or places of manufacture, does not meet the credit intent and is not acceptable for LEED documentation.” This ruling demands product- and plant-specific recycled content evaluation and documentation. “Recycled content claims must be specific to the installed product (and therefore place of manufacture); regional or national claims do not meet credit requirements.”

The LIR will provide a more transparent and clear system for LEED project teams pursuing the Recycled Content credit. The ruling states that, “The product that is known to have zero recycled content may be unduly benefiting from the recycled content of other products/manufacturing facilities”. Recycled content being documented on a plant and product basis not only allows the most sustainable products to be selected within LEED projects, but will also encourage manufacturers to better identify low-performing manufacturing plants and products.

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