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Conounded Expectations Redux
We’re really wearing this one out, usingit two years in a row, but there’s just no way around it… The great Americanphilosopher Yogi Berra once noted: “It’s tough to make predictions, especiallyabout the uture.” In 2009, we assumed that the phenomenal growth we hadseen the previous three years was not abnormal (even though it exceeded thetotal new foor area added in the US last year) and would somehow continue insome ashion going orward. Clearly, economic realities proved us wrong.Our predictions o continued strong growth in LEED registrations werecompletely turned on their head as 2010 brought precipitous declines.Nonetheless, our certications orecast remain steadast: we came close with lastyear’s total foor area prediction, though LEED New Construction and LEED Core& Shell did not grow as much as anticipated.
New Certications Break Records, but Falls Short o Registration Boom
There is good news on the certication ront: This year’s total certied foor areanearly equals the previous ten years’ certied foor area combined. Last year,LEED or Existing Buildings Operations and Maintenance (EBOM) certied hal (49 percent) o all the domestic foor area in the LEED system and a quartero the international projects to equal the certied foor area o LEED or NewConstruction (NC) and LEED or Core & Shell (CS) combined.Also, given that certications almost equaled registrations this year, even moreimpressive is that certied newly-built LEED foor area exceeded 20 percent o new construction additions. All this notwithstanding, in order to keep pace withearlier registration rates, certications were going to have to triple instead o only double. So, the sad result is that the percent o LEED projects “graduating”to certication ell below the 70 percent goal that we believe represents ahealthy graduation rate.
Appropriately Mixed Metaphors: Registrations Tank, but Is that Really SoBad?
Any “green lieboat” we were positing last year was simply a mirage.The spike o registrations most likely was some sort o panic or “irrationalexuberance” driven by the sunsetting o Version 2.2 or some last-ditch gambitto somehow ride the green wave into nancing or whatever.Our year-end orecast o LEED registrations has them down almost 70 percentcompared to last year (NC and CS are o 80 percent and 90 percent in the U.S.respectively). As bad as that sounds, these lower registration numbers actuallyrepresent about 22 percent o the total expected new foor area to be addedthis year, which puts LEED near the top o its anticipated ull market saturationpoint o 25 percent o new construction.
LEED EB is the Certication Champion, CI Mirrors LEED Overall
In 2010LEED EBOM certied almost 50 percent more foor area—over 80 million squareeet—than did LEED NC, growing nearly 80 percent year on year. Cumulatively,since its launch in 2004, LEED EBOM has certied nearly the same total foorarea as LEED NC since its launch in 2000. In spite o this success, we believethat LEED EBOM is less than halway to where it needs to be to sucientlycontribute to minimizing climate change.LEED CI showed similar schizophrenia as the rest o the system, growingcertied foor area by nearly 60 percent, while registered foor area declined by65 percent.