Earn LEED Points With Beehives

Earn LEED Points With Beehives

Did you know the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) awards LEED points

for adding a pollinator habitat to a commercial building?

Beehives Earn LEED Credits


Local Food Protection                                                            1 credit

Social Equity Within the Community                                  1 credit

Heat Island Reduction                                                            2 credits

Site Developement - Protect or Restore Habitat              2 credits

Innovation                                                                                  1 credit

Whether you are planning a redevelopment project or the process of constructing a new building, you can credits towards certification.

LEED stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, and it is a globally recognized green building certification program created by the U.S. Green Building Council. AS of 2019, there are almost 70,000 LEED certified buildings in the U.S.. To become LEED certified, a building must reach a certain number of points by having resource-efficient, high performing, cost effective, and of course, environmentally friendly, design, construction, operations, and maintenance.

Economic Benefits

In addition to benefiting the planet, LEED certifications come with multiple financial advantages. LEED-certified buildings typically charge about 3.7% higher rents, and vacancy rates are about 4% lower for green buildings than for non-green buildings. In California, LEED certified homes go for an average of $17,000 more than normal homes of the same value, and in Texas they go for $25,000 more. In one survey over 60% of residential consumers reported their interest in sustainable properties, and this demand will continue to grow as millenials get older. An additional benefit to tenants is that utility bill costs are lower in LEED buildings.

LEED buildings are attractive to not only tenants, but construction businesses as well. Many LEED buildings qualify for numerous incentives such as tax rebates and zoning allowances. Construction companies can advertise to homeowners or real-estate agents that LEED homes can lower insurance premiums, and they also retain higher property values.

Commercial buildings and corporate businesses also benefit from LEED certifications. LEED buildings have lower operating costs, better indoor environment quality, and can help businesses gain a competitive edge. According to a 2011 report from McGraw Hill Construction, “61% of corporate leaders believe that sustainability leads to market differentiation and improved financial importance.” LEED certifications are an excellent way for companies to promote their values of sustainability and eco-conscious morals.

How can bees help developers achieve LEED certification?

The level of LEED certification depends on the number of points a building receives, and one way for a building to get more points is to have a green rooftop. A green rooftop supplies vegetation for water and heat control, biodiversity to the surrounding ecosystem, and results in improved air quality. Rooftop beehives can help contribute pollination for rooftop vegetation, and they produce honey that can be used by local restaurants or sold in the building.

It is difficult for older buildings to earn LEED points through sustainable construction, so adding a rooftop garden and beehive is a great way for these buildings to receive LEED certification points. One LEED Platinum building in Manhattan, the Bank of America tower, is home to two hives of 100,000 honey bees. It will also assist in rebuilding the bee population that has decreased significantly over the past few decades.

Want to dive deeper?

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