ID#1613 made on
EQc4.3 - Low-emitting materials - carpet systems
LEED BD+C: New Construction, LEED BD+C: Schools, LEED ID+C: Commercial Interiors, LEED BD+C: Core and Shell
In designing a project for LEED certification, we are planning to specify linoleum sheet flooring in areas of the building. We are requesting that a credit be awarded to this project under LEED CI EQ4...
In designing a project for LEED certification, we are planning to specify linoleum sheet flooring in areas of the building. We are requesting that a credit be awarded to this project under LEED CI EQ4.3 as the flooring will meet VOC emissions requirements of the FloorScore certification program which has more stringent requirements than those required to receive a credit under the CRI Green Label or Green Label Plus programs. We believe that all flooring materials in a building, not just carpet, should have an opportunity to receive credit for meeting stringent VOC emissions requirements. FloorScore is a voluntary, independent certification program that tests and certifies hard surface flooring and associated products for compliance with criteria adopted in California for indoor air emissions of Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) with potential health effects. The program uses a small-scale chamber test protocol and incorporates VOC emissions criteria developed by the California Department of Health Services, which are widely known as Section 1350. The FloorScore program was developed by the Resilient Floor Covering Institute (RFCI) in collaboration with Scientific Certification Systems (SCS) following several years of extensive testing of flooring products produced by resilient flooring manufacturers. The program incorporates California Section 1350 procedures and requirements and adapts them to the certification of flooring products for use in typical buildings. RFCI controls the FloorScore program name and logo. SCS acts as the third-party certifier ensuring program integrity and independence. As part of certification, SCS (1) works with the manufacturer to identify the appropriate samples for testing; (2) reviews VOC emission test reports generated by independent testing laboratories for individual candidate products; (3) determines if the test results meet the California Section 1350 requirements for individual VOCs of concern; and (4) periodically inspects manufacturing plants to review product formulas, processing, and quality control in order to define the permitted use of the FloorScore seal. The basis of the VOC criteria used for FloorScore certification is the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) which has an active program to develop chronic toxicity guidelines for air pollutants. The program uses widely accepted procedures developed by the U.S. EPA and includes extensive peer review and public comment. To date, the program has developed Chronic Reference Exposure Levels (CRELS) for 78 chemical substances. The CRELS are concentrations that assume long-term exposures and include a number of uncertainty factors. These guidelines provide a strong scientific basis for the FloorScore program and are consistent with the intent of EQ 4.3 to "reduce the quantity of indoor air contaminants that are odorous, potentially irritating and/or harmful to the comfort and well-being of installers and occupants."
Yes, the proposed alternative compliance path using FloorScore is acceptable for credit achievement according to the following stipulations. 100% of the non-carpet finished flooring must be FloorScore-certified (as described above), and it must comprise, at minimum, at least 25% of the finished floor area. Potential examples of unfinished flooring include floors in mechanical rooms, electrical rooms, and elevator service rooms. This ruling was justified by the technical committee's evaluation of the technical resources used as basis for the standard (California and USEPA sources), and adequate benefit. This CIR went through an official USGBC process for the establishment of performance/intent-equivalent alternative compliance paths. Applicable Internationally.
Related Addenda (Corrections & Interpretations)