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Published on: 17. August 2023

BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method) is a widely recognized and respected sustainability certification and rating system for buildings. It originated in the United Kingdom but has gained international popularity as a method for assessing and certifying the environmental performance of buildings across various categories.

Key features of BREEAM certification include:

Comprehensive Assessment: BREEAM evaluates a building’s sustainability performance across a range of categories, including energy, water, materials, waste, health and well-being, management, pollution, land use, and ecology.

Customization: The assessment criteria are tailored to different building types and uses, allowing for a customized approach to sustainability assessment.

Performance-Based: BREEAM measures the actual environmental impact and performance of a building rather than just its design. This ensures that sustainable practices are maintained throughout the building’s lifecycle.

Scoring System: Buildings earn points for meeting specific criteria within each category. The total points determine the final BREEAM rating, which ranges from “Pass” to higher levels like “Good,” “Very Good,” “Excellent,” and “Outstanding.”

Assessment Process: BREEAM assessments are conducted by licensed assessors who evaluate various aspects of a building’s design, construction, and operation. The assessors consider factors like energy efficiency, water conservation, materials sourcing, indoor air quality, and site ecology.

Global Applicability: While BREEAM originated in the UK, it has been adapted for use in multiple countries and regions, allowing it to accommodate different building regulations, climate conditions, and market contexts.

Continuous Improvement: BREEAM encourages ongoing performance improvement by requiring periodic reassessment to maintain certification and encourage the adoption of sustainable practices over time.

Market Recognition: BREEAM-certified buildings are recognized for their commitment to sustainability and can enjoy benefits such as improved marketability, reduced operational costs, and enhanced occupant well-being.

Types of Buildings: BREEAM can be applied to various building types, including commercial, residential, industrial, and public buildings, as well as infrastructure projects.

BREEAM is one of several sustainability certification systems available for buildings, alongside LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design), Green Star, and others. The choice of certification system often depends on local regulations, market preferences, and project goals. It’s important to note that developments and updates may have occurred since my last knowledge update in September 2021, so I recommend checking official BREEAM sources for the most up-to-date information.

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