News Brief

California Code Scores LEED Points

All LEED v4 prerequisites and six credits are now automatic for many commercial projects meeting the CALGreen code.

August 14, 2017

Projects like the LEED Platinum CalSTRS headquarters could have a much easier time getting certified under new LEED guidance.

Photo: Paul Housberg. License: CC BY 2.0.
Commercial buildings in California can now get a huge jumpstart on achieving LEED certification. New construction projects meeting certain requirements will enjoy streamlined documentation to achieve all LEED v4 Building Design and Construction (BD+C) prerequisites along with six optional credits, for a total of six automatic points. The move acknowledges significant overlaps between the voluntary LEED rating systems and the progressive energy and building codes in the state.

To qualify, buildings must be new, non-residential construction projects (not renovations or commercial interiors) subject to the California Energy Code and the CALGreen Code, and must register under LEED v4. USGBC has not yet released technical details explaining how documentation will be streamlined.

The credits to be awarded are:

The decision updates prior guidance by USGBC that allowed far fewer automatic prerequisites and a different set of credits for California projects.

“This alignment in LEED represents an evolution by the USGBC to better support and encourage green building code adoptions across the country,” said Wes Sullens, USGBC’s director of codes technical development, in an email announcement. “We hope that California’s leadership can showcase how a strong green building code helps fulfill the local and state goals as well as our mission to achieve green buildings for all.”

For more information:

U.S. Green Building Council

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December 4, 2017 - 2:54 pm

Thank you BuildingGreen for this article. If readers are interested in learning more or signing up for the California-LEED streamlining, please visit

On the webpage, viewers will find links to a registration form for the ACPs, a list of possible credits and prerequisites that are eligible for streamlining, and a guidance document with step-by-step instructions for utilizing the ACPs in LEED project submittals.