U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED Green Building Program Now Recognizes the Living Product Challenge

Inclusion of Living Products in LEED credits stands to grow adoption of healthy materials
Apr 19, 2019 10:00 AM ET
Press Release

SEATTLE, April 19, 2019 /3BL Media/ The Living Product Challenge (LPC) is now an approved certification path in the U.S. Green Building Council® (USGBC) LEED® v4/4.1 BD+C program. Living Product Challenge certified products join Declare as a compliant pathway in the LEED version 4 and 4.1 Building Product Disclosure and Optimization - Material Ingredients credit. In fact, LPC now receives the highest points for demonstrating healthier products under Option 2 of the credit. There are currently 21 LPC-certified products that comply, and the program is scaling rapidly.

This builds upon the recognition of the Declare program by LEED V4 in 2016, and reflects a broader industry alignment and trend to embrace ingredient disclosure and transparency.

“We set an incredibly high bar with the Living Product Challenge, asking manufacturers to create healthy sustainable products that are net positive across their lifecycle,” said Amanda Sturgeon, CEO ILFI. “Since then, leading manufacturers have truly stepped up to the plate and redefined what is possible for sustainable manufacturing through LPC. We hope this recognition of the the program’s rigor and 3rd party process by LEED will continue to spur transformation in the industry,” she added.

The Building Product Disclosure and Optimization - Material Ingredients credit underwent a series of revisions in LEED v4.1. With the inclusion of LPC and Declare products, LEED has broadened the availability of compliant products that contribute to LEED certification. These recent updates make more products available, making the credits easier to achieve for architects and designers. This revision will encourage demand and production of healthy materials across the industry. The LPC is a framework for creating products that have a Net Positive environmental and social impact across their life cycle. This recognition of its rigorous material health requirements will help to drive the program’s adoption more broadly, thereby driving the creation of products that give more than they take. Early adopters who have certified with LPC include Mohawk Group, Superior Essex, Owens Corning, Armstrong Ceilings, Crossville Tile, Tarkett, Metroflor, Humanscale, Bureo and the Garden Tower Project.

“This is a just reward for the serious investment in product innovation that companies like Mohawk have made to optimize products for health and to achieve the Challenge,” said George Bandy Jr., CSO, Mohawk Industries. “The Challenge has already demonstrated significant return on investment for our commercial division in particular. This alignment between LBC and LEED is an important market signal to create demand for our Living Products and catalyze the transformation of the building materials industry for the benefit of people and the environment,” he added.

About the Living Product Challenge (LPC)
The Living Product Challenge is the most advanced sustainability standard for products. The program re-imagines the design and construction of products to function as elegantly and efficiently as anything found in the natural world. Manufacturers are using the Living Product Challenge framework to rethink the way products are made. Using the framework, manufacturers create Living Products that are healthy and free of toxins, socially responsible and respects the rights of workers. Instead of simply trying to make products that are “less bad,” living products have a Net Positive positive impact on human’s and the environment through their very creation.

About the International Living Future Institute (ILFI)
The International Living Future Institute is an environmental NGO committed to catalyzing the transformation toward communities that are socially just, culturally rich and ecologically restorative. ILFI is premised on the belief that providing a compelling vision for the future is a fundamental requirement for reconciling humanity’s relationship with the natural world. ILFI operates the Living Building Challenge, the built environment’s most ambitious performance standard. It is a hub for many other visionary programs that support the transformation toward a living future. Declare is a nutrition label for products. It is also a transparency platform and product database that is changing the materials marketplace. The Declare program meets the product reporting requirements of the Living Building Challenge and other green building certification programs.