To encourage designers, planners and building owners/operators to proactively plan before design commences for the potential impacts of natural disasters or disturbances as well as address issues that impact long-term building performance such as changing climate conditions.
Complete in pre-design a Hazard Assessment prerequisite plus at least one of two options of either Climate Resilience Planning or Emergency Preparedness Planning.
PREREQUISITE: Conduct Hazard Assessment for the Project Site
Identify the potential high risks associated with natural hazards affecting the project site(s) and building function. In some cases these risks may include man-made events, such as power management accidents and terrorism; these are important variables that could be considered in planning.
For jurisdictions where mitigations plans are available:
Refer to local, county, state and national hazard mitigation plans to identify high risk hazards that have been locally determined.
For jurisdictions where mitigations plans are not available:
Consult with an environmental scientist to address all relevant conditions for the project site; consider the following resources to identify high hazard conditions.
For projects outside the United States:
International projects may use the U.S. standard or a local equivalent, whichever is more stringent.
Identify flood risk; determine whether project is located within the 500-year FEMA National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) flood zone1 (.002 chance of annual recurrence.)
Identify if the project includes a risk to any activity or element for which even a slight chance of flooding would be too great.
- Reference: FEMA Flood Map Service Center web search portal)
- Identify hurricane risk; determine whether project is located within a hurricane susceptible region.
- Reference: FEMA Wind Zone Map: p 61
- Identify tornado and high wind risk; determine whether project is located within a Zone II, III or Zone IV high wind region or above average tornado activity1
FEMA Wind Zone Map: page 3, Tornado Activity page 6, Wind Zones
NOAA National Climatic Data Center’s U.S. Tornado Climatology
- Identify seismic risk; determine whether project is within FEMA1 Earthquake zones SDC C (yellow), D (orange), or E (red)
- References: FEMA Earthquake Hazard Maps
For more detailed studies: USGS Earthquake Hazards Program maps
If yes, where possible pursue further specific analysis of site and surrounding conditions that will influence seismic hazards, such as soil conditions, adjacent structures, and service to the site
While intended for existing buildings, extrapolate aspects of design and examples of adjacencies that impact vulnerability of a given site.
- Identify tsunami risk; determine whether project is within a tsunami inundation zone1
- Reference: Pacific Northwest Seismic Network Tsunami maps
- Identify wildfire risk; identify determine whether project is located in a county that is designated by red or black on FEMA map1.
Wildfire frequency by county in the U.S. is shown in the FEMA map Wildfire Activity by County 1994 – 2013.
FEMA Federal Fire Occurrence Map Viewer.
- Identify drought risk; determine whether the project is in U.S. locations that have experienced Moderate, Severe, or Extreme drought conditions for more than 25% of the time in the past 10 years1.
- Reference: NOAA Historical Palmer Drought Indices
- Identify relative landslide, subsidence and liquefaction risk, and critical slopes risk that may indicate unstable soil. Refer to state and local data1 to determine whether the project is located in a high risk landslide area and whether there is land on or uphill of the building site with a slope exceeding 15% (6.75°).
- Reference: For general use only, not for site-specific information:
USGS map, “Landslide Overview Map of the Conterminous United States”
Landslides and unstable soils
Document findings and review with the client and project team. Solicit input on site-specific risk and vulnerabilities to incorporate into the preliminary analysis. Based on the project goals, program and intended service for the life of the building, identify the top three hazards for further project planning or less If fewer than three hazards are identified.
1For projects outside the United States:
International projects may use the U.S. standard or a local equivalent, whichever is more stringent.
ACHIEVE ONE OF THE TWO FOLLOWING OPTIONS, IN ADDITION TO THE PREREQUISITE
OPTION 1: Climate Resilience Planning
Complete a vulnerability assessment of impacts associated with climate change for project site selection, programming/planning and design parameters.
Use the following resources to help determine future climate impacts:
- For regions where local climate change studies are available:
Refer to government regional, state and local climate change studies that identify local vulnerabilities. In all cases where local equivalent standards are used identify in the documentation.
- For projects outside the United States where local climate change studies are not available:
Consult with a climate scientist to address all relevant conditions for the project site where possible; International projects may use the U.S. standard or a local equivalent, whichever is more stringent.
- For United States regions where local climate change studies are not available
Consult with a climate scientist to address all relevant conditions for the project site where possible; consider the following resources to identify vulnerability conditions.
General Climate Change U.S. Regional Predictions
Use the middle-of-the-road projections as the minimum project basis of design unless research indicates otherwise. Reference: National Climate Assessment Report.
- Sea Level Rise and Storm Surge
Identify storm surge risk and impacts associated with sea level rise.
- River Flooding Projections
Identify if project is located in an area identified as a greater than 50% flood risk per following.
- Winter Storms
Identify if project is located in an area with a historical record of frequent winter storms or extreme cold events risk.
- Temperature, Precipitation Changes and Storm Intensity
Identify the range of project temperature, precipitation and storm intensity changes based on service life for different scenarios. Use the middle-of-the-road projections as the minimum project basis of design unless research indicates otherwise.
- EPA Scenario Based Climate Projections Map: Provides changes in annual temperature and precipitation in two time periods (2035 and 2060) for three climate model projections that represent the range of projections. Note that these projections are provided to illustrate the range of potential changes in climate and no single scenario is more likely to occur than any other.
- Climate Modeling: Climate Change World Weather File Generator
Issues to Consider:
In many cases scientists predict that climate change will make past hazard and climate-related events more frequent and intense. For example, drought, which climate models predict will become more frequent and of longer duration in some areas, increases wildfire risk, as does the die-off of trees that can occur when warming winters fail to keep wood-boring beetles in check, as has occurred in the Northern Rockies in recent decades. With temperature and precipitation reaching new extremes, winter storms and extreme heat events are also expected to be more frequent and intense.
As climate and environmental conditions change, associated negative impacts will as well , so damages from past events can be considered as a baseline when considering what's vulnerable.
Based on the project location, goals, and program, identify which climate change vulnerabilities are of highest priority for planning and design. Take into account the expected service life of the project and identify vulnerabilities based on changes predicted to take place during that time period. Consider the adaptive capacity of each population or resource. Robust infrastructure and strong social networks are two factors that can reduce vulnerability. Since the outcomes from high wind events, winter storms or extreme heat events often result in temporary loss of power, design teams are strongly encouraged to address passive survivability measures covered in Resilient Design Credit 3.
Share the vulnerability assessment and top priorities with the project team and client. Research and innovate to develop options that may reduce vulnerability or increase resilience to climate and natural resource conditions for the project. Address the following topics as applicable:
- Project location and elevation
- Adjacent site features and development
- Availability of and access to services and infrastructure
- Building envelope performance requirements
- Building materials
- Passive systems
- Site design
- Passive survivability (see Credit 3)
- Other systems
OPTION 2: Emergency Preparedness Planning
Ensure that project owner or facility management staff have evaluated before design commences their emergency preparedness and that a measureable assessment program is in place for continuous improvement.
Prepare the Facility Description Form to identify the specific emergency preparedness features of the building.
- Participate in the LEEDuser pilot credit forum
- Complete the feedback survey:
|Documentation||All Projects||Option 1||Option 2|
Custom template summarizing the hazard identification, reference documents, and determination of priorities
Attach any site-specific custom analyses development
Climate Resilience Planning template summarizing the
vulnerability identification and strategy assessment
|Document how the analysis informed design decisions in the Project’s OPR and BOD||X|
Red Cross 123 Assessment™ form**
Red Cross Facility Description™ form**
** must be signed by the building owner
Prerequisite: Conduct Hazard Assessment for the Project Site
Submit the completed Assessment and Planning for Resilience Workbook that summarizes the hazard identification, reference documents, and determination of priorities. Attach any site-specific custom analyses developed. Demonstrate that analysis was completed prior to beginning of schematic design.
Where an alternative international standard has been used, document its equivalence with the applicable US-based standard.
Option 1: Climate Resilience Planning
- Submit the completed Climate Resilience Planning template that summarizes the vulnerability identification and strategy assessment process. Document how the analysis was completed prior to schematic design and informed design decisions in the project’s OPR and BOD.
- Document where an alternative international or local standard has been used.
Option 2: Emergency Preparedness Planning
Submit the following two completed forms signed by Owner:
- Red Cross 123 AssessmentTM Form
- Red Cross Facility DescriptionTM Form
The 123 Assessment form requires responses to preparedness questions but this credit option does not require attaining a designated performance score.
The Red Cross 123 AssessmentTM Form and Red Cross Facility DescriptionTM Form of the American Red Cross Ready RatingTM program are available online for free when you create an account (www.readyrating.org). Additionally, a written disclosure to the Red Cross is necessary for consent to share this Assessment with a third-party (GBCI).
Ask questions, share tips, and get notified of new forum posts by joining LEEDuser, a tool developed by BuildingGreen and supported by USGBC!
No sample form available for this credit.View all sample forms