News Analysis

LEED in Public Buildings Sparks Private-Sector Demand

Based on data from 735 California cities, the authors of “Public Procurement and the Private Supply of Green Buildings” estimate that cities requiring LEED certification for municipal buildings between 2001 and 2008 saw 2.3 private-sector LEED registrations per year, on average, with an average total of 15.8 private LEED registrations compared to 8.3 in other cities—or 90% higher. Neighboring cities without their own municipal LEED standards experienced a boost, too, with a 61% bump from 1.5 to 2.4 private LEED registrations per year. The authors conclude that establishing a government standard can overcome the inertia of developers waiting for suppliers to offer LEED expertise, while suppliers wait for evidence of demand.

Along with variables such as market size, income, and education, the study took into account cities’ environmental preferences by measuring hybrid vehicle ownership and support for environmental ballot questions; the effect of green procurement policies on the private sector was similar across cities regardless of those factors.

Published November 29, 2012

Weaver, E. (2012, November 29). LEED in Public Buildings Sparks Private-Sector Demand. Retrieved from