Entry Type ID Date Applicable Rating System Primary Credit Inquiry (LIs) Ruling (LIs) Related Addenda/LIs Related Resources Campus Applicable Internationally Applicable Country Applicability Reference Guide (Addenda) Page (Addenda) Location (Addenda) Description of Change (Addenda) "LEED Interpretation" "1330" "2005-12-06" "New Construction, Schools - New Construction, Commercial Interiors" "EQc3.2 - Construction IAQ management plan - after construction" "The following is an alternative compliance path to EQc3.2 for the testing procedure for the detection of 4-PCH: BACKGROUND: The project is a small 1-storey office building. An indoor air quality testing procedure was conducted prior to occupancy in compliance with the EPA referenced standard. The report indicated that all levels were below the required limits except 4-PCH. Unfortunately, the detection limit of the equipment used for 4-PCH was 18-23ug/m3. The maximum 4-PCH level required by the IAQ testing protocol for LEED is 6.5ug/m3, based on the precendent from CIR ruling 11/29/2004. 4-PCH is a contaminant almost exclusively found in carpet backing using Styrene-butadiene latex rubber (SBR). The carpet installed has SBR backing but also complies with the requirements of EQc4.3, which limit the level of 4-PCH to less than 0.05 ug/m2/h, in keeping with the Carpet and Rug Institute\'s Green Label specifications. The project cannot retest for 4-PCH with more sensitive equipment because the building has been occupied for some time now, so the results would be meaningless at this point. We believe we can demonstate compliance to the 4-PCH level requirements through an alternative path, which involves calculating the maximum emissions possible and comparing this with the LEED requirement: Although the carpet contains SBR backing, it does meet the Carpet and Rug Institute\'s Green Label specifications for 4-PCH, which are 0.05 ug/m^2/h. Given that the gross square footage of the building is 9,000 SF (836.4 m^2) and the average ceiling height is 15 FT, the volume is therefore 135,000 FT^3 (3,823 m^3). If we assume the carpet emits 4-PCH at a rate of 0.05 ug/m^2/h (maximum possible emission factor for compliance), then the maximum emission rate the whole carpet could have, if applied to the entire floor area, is: (0.05 ug/m^2/h) x (836.4 m^2) = 41.8 ug/h. Therefore, the maximum 4-PCH emissions that could possibly contaminate the indoor air (without even considering the introduction of outdoor air) is: (41.8 ug/h) / (3,823 m^3) = 0.011 ug/m^3/h Since the maximum 4-PCH level required by the IAQ testing protocol for LEED is 6.5 ug/m^3, it would take 590 hours (25 days) for the 4-PCH to reach this level, if the carpet were inside a sealed box with the same inside volume as the building. Since the carpet is not in a sealed box, and since there will be at worst case conditions at least 25% outdoor air mixed into the air stream, it is reasonable to assume that the 4-PCH levels will never reach 6.5 ug/m^3. We believe this calculation method demonstrates compliance with the credit requirements for 4-PCH levels." "Your proposed calculation method, in combination with the air quality testing, is acceptable to demonstrate achievement of this credit - with two qualifications. First, you state that, ""all levels were below the required limits except 4-PCH"". From your proposal, we assume that the results for 4-PCH were ""non-detect"", but you do not specifically state that this is the case. Clearly, your proposed method only works if your test results indicated ""non-detect"" for 4-PCH. Second, in order to solidify your approach: instead of making a final assumption, complete the calculation by estimating the 4-PCH steady state. Employ a simple calculation for the building as a whole. Applicable Internationally. " "None" "None" "X" "LEED Interpretation" "1440" "2006-02-23" "New Construction, Schools - New Construction, Commercial Interiors" "EQc3.2 - Construction IAQ management plan - after construction" "This project is a 147,000 call center. The owner procures air quality testing services on all their new and existing buildings and have done so before they ever did any LEED projects. They recognize the value of superior air quality in terms on worker productivity and avoidance of risk. On this new project the contractor was very diligent in ensuring that low VOC paints, adhesives and sealants were used. No wood materials with added Urea formaldehyde were allowed on the project. The contractor collected MSDS sheets on all these materials. All the carpet meets the CRI Green Label Plus certification. The contractor developed and implemented a Construction Indoor Air Quality Management Plan which followed the SMACNA guidelines for buildings under construction. (The project will not achieve the LEED credit EQc3.1 because there was no MERV 13 filtration provided) In order to ensure superior indoor air quality at the new facility the team is employing air quality testing. Along with testing for the elements required for this credit the team will also test for mold. The testing team is utilizing the EPA Protocol for Environmental Requirements, Baseline IAQ and Materials, for the Research Triangle Park Campus, Section 01445 as required per the LEED Reference Guide credit EQ3.2. The team also referred to the guidelines in the LEED CI Reference Guide credit EQ3.2 for air testing in occupied buildings. The testing began before the building was occupied and the tests for Formaldehyde and total VOC\'s appeared to be within the required levels although all results are not yet in. The testing for particulate level was quite high. The cause of the high particulate appears to be dust in the underfloor area and mechanical rooms. Since the initial testing the building has been about 25% occupied. The underfloor areas and mechanical rooms have been cleaned again. The building ventilation system will provide minimum ventilation rate 3 hours prior to daily occupancy and continue while the space is occupied. The rate of outside air will be at least .30 cfm / sq ft. If levels are exceeded the space will be flushed out by increasing the rate of outdoor air during unoccupied hours. Any additional adjustments to the mechanical system will addressed if needed. Additional testing will be done until all the required test samples meet the concentration levels. Can this method be used to meet the requirements to achieve credit EQc3.2?" "You are essentially asking if it is acceptable to continue the IAQ testing and contaminant mitigation activity while the building is partially occupied. The owner\'s actions are commendable, but unfortunately your proposal is not acceptable. The referenced EPA standard states that flush-out, retesting, and compliance with contaminant limits must all be completed before occupancy, and the Technical Advisory Group has chosen not to diverge from it. Instead, the TAG recommends that you examine your occupancy and ventilation schedules to see if you conformed to the flush-out schedule described in EQc3.2 ruling dated 9/8/04. Applicable Internationally. " "None" "None" "X" "LEED Interpretation" "1561" "2006-09-05" "New Construction, Schools - New Construction, Commercial Interiors, Existing Buildings" "EQc3.2 - Construction IAQ management plan - after construction" "The East and North Wing Addition project Hospital is comprised of two phases, three new additions totaling 167,580 GSF and renovations of 25,065 GSF. From the owner\'s perspective, these are two separate sub-projects. The overall project includes two attached and one detached building additions, respectively: a) The North Building Addition, at 30,850 new GSF, will house the relocated Central Sterile Supply (CSS), Surgery Expansion (OR) and Food Services Expansion, along with a Mechanical Room to support the new building. This building, which ties the Main Hospital to the Central Plant at the Ground Level, is designed for both vertical (three floors plus a mechanical penthouse) and horizontal expansion to the North. Included within this section is a planted green roof. b) The East Building Inpatient Tower, totaling 136,730 new GSF, will accommodate the relocation of the Intensive Care Unit (ICU), Emergency Department (ED) expansion, Telemetry Care Unit (TCU), and more Orthopaedic Inpatient beds, as well as a new Lobby, Mechanical Room and Mechanical Penthouse to support the new tower. This tower also includes two shelled floors - the fitout of one floor is an alternate still under consideration at this time. A walled garden off the Level 2 ICU rooms is included to screen patients from motorists and pedestrian traffic. c) A detached metal building, to match the existing Central Plant in appearance, will be constructed to house a new and one future chiller, a cooling tower and a future additional cooling tower. An additional cooling tower replacement and associated piping work is also scheduled within the original Central Plant. We proposed to comply with this credit in the following way: New Construction: In this section, the two-week flush out period will be completed. Renovation: Since this section is renovation, tying into new and existing mechanical systems and accomplished in multiple sub-phases, we propose to comply with EQ3.2 for this portion using the testing methods identified in CIR dated 10/8/2002. Is this approach to compliance is acceptable?" "The building flush-out and IAQ testing strategy proposed is acceptable, provided that existing spaces are protected from construction-related contamination as well as prevention of cross-contamination between systems. Protection measures should follow the SMACNA Guidelines for Occupied Buildings and be outlined in the Construction IAQ Management Plan to ensure compliance." "None" "None" "LEED Interpretation" "1598" "2006-10-23" "New Construction, Schools - New Construction, Commercial Interiors, Existing Buildings" "EQc3.2 - Construction IAQ management plan - after construction" "BACKGROUND This credit interpretation request is specific to interpretation of EQ Credit #3.2 ""Construction IAQ Management Plan: Before Occupancy "" under version 2.1. The intent of this credit is ""to prevent indoor air quality problems resulting from the construction process in order to help sustain the comfort and well-being of construction workers and building occupants"". We believe the approach described below will achieve that intent. The Mazankowski Alberta Heart Institute Project is an expansion to the Walter C. MacKenzie Center, an existing active treatment hospital of approximately 2,000,000 square feet of occupied space. The Mazankowski Alberta Heart Institute will connect to the Walter C. MacKenzie Center through several corridors that will be isolated from the main building until the Heart Institute is occupied. The heart institute is a multi-storey building of approximately 350,00 Square Feet of occupied space consisting of 8 occupied floors each with an interstitial floor above to house building systems. The interstitial floors are completely separated from the occupied floors. The ventilation systems serving the building are configured such that central air systems provide 100% outdoor air to all occupied floors from the 2nd floor to the 8th floor. The main and lower levels are served from air systems that re-circulate a portion of the building air. Each occupied floor and each interstitial floor are separated into a minimum of 3 Fire compartments. Supply and exhaust air for each fire compartment can be isolated by closing smoke dampers in the supply and exhaust ductwork serving the respective fire compartment. The construction and occupancy schedule for the project requires that the building be occupied in stages. These stages would be at a minimum fire compartment by fire compartment and more likely floor by floor. REQUEST We are requesting that the USGBC interpret Credit 3.2 to allow ""Before Occupancy"" flushing to be conducted on a fire zone by fire zone basis for the Mazankowski Alberta Heart Institute. All unoccupied zones would be isolated from the occupied zones by closing the smoke dampers and taping off man doors serving unoccupied zones. The zones being flushed would utilize the main air systems to allow for the two-week building flush out period prescribed in the discussion for EQ Credit #3.2. The 2nd through 8th floors are served by air systems designed to provide 100% outdoor air. Therefore there will be no recirculation of the air from the occupied or flush-out spaces. For the lower and main floors served by a system that permits re-circulated air, these systems will be controlled so that 100% outdoor air is supplied through this system during the flush out period." "The CIR is inquiring if it is possible to conduct the two-week flush-out of a building in stages to allow for a staggered construction completion schedule. The inquiry indicates that the building floors and/or zones can be separated physically from adjacent spaces, to ensure no cross contamination from construction in the incomplete areas, while providing 100% outside air to accomplish the flush out. Previously posted CIR rulings, dated 10/17/2001 and 9/5/2006 approve the process for a staggered flush-out approach, provided that existing spaces are protected from construction-related contamination as well as prevention of cross-contamination between systems. Protection measures should follow the SMACNA Guidelines for Occupied Buildings and be outlined in the Construction IAQ Management Plan to ensure compliance." "None" "None" "LEED Interpretation" "1955" "2007-12-01" "New Construction, Core and Shell, Schools - New Construction, Healthcare" "EQc3.2 - Construction IAQ management plan - after construction" "The project contains both systems furniture (42"" application) for open areas, and modular wall systems (full height application that is demountable and reusable such as the DIRTT system). We are trying to schedule flush-out activities and understand from other CIRs that furniture installation may occur during or after flushout. Are modular walls as described here considered furniture?" "Full height, demountable modular walls are essentially the same in form and function as permanent walls and as such are not considered furniture. They must be installed in the building prior to flush-out for the purposes of EQc3.2. Please note that such modular walls potentially affect other LEED credits (such as daylighting and views) and should therefore be included in any calculations and submissions required for those credits as well. Applicable Internationally.\n\nUPDATE October 1, 2012: This LEED Interpretation is not applicable to LEED-CI. Furniture must be installed before the flush-out for LEED-CI projects." "6017, 5976, 5598, 5979" "None" "X" "LEED Interpretation" "2320" "2008-10-08" "New Construction, Schools - New Construction, Commercial Interiors, Existing Buildings" "EQc3.2 - Construction IAQ management plan - after construction" "The 9/5/2006 allows projects to provide both IAQ testing and building flush-out in different construction phases. We intend to provide IAQ testing and building flush-out in different areas of the building within the same construction phase. Our project is a high school addition/renovation that will be occupied in phases. The first phase of construction is complete and those spaces were tested, prior to occupancy, based on the credit ruling dated 10/8/2002. The second phase of the project includes a pool and academic spaces. We are concerned that the chemicals used in the pool will adversely impact the testing results. We therefore propose flushing out that space, using the \'purge mode\' on the pool\'s mechanical unit. Based on the 9/8/2004 credit ruling, we will achieve 14,000 cu ft of outdoor air per square foot of floor space in less than 5 days. As the rest of the Phase 2 areas will not meet the flush-out criteria prior to the scheduled occupancy, we therefore intend to provide IAQ testing in the remaining portions of the building. Until both the IAQ testing and the flush-out is complete, we will prevent cross-contamination between areas. Protection measures will follow the SMACNA Guidelines for Occupied Buildings as outlined in the Construction IAQ Management Plan. Please confirm if the proposed compliance path meets the credit intent. If it is not acceptable, please clarify what changes are required in order to meet the credit requirements." "The applicant is requesting clarification regarding the implementation of flush-out procedures and IAQ testing during the same construction phase. As described, the proposed approach appears to satisfy the credit intent. The indoor air quality problems from construction activity in each space are either reduced from a flush-out or confirmed to be minimal from IAQ testing. Please note, however, that IAQ testing procedures for LEED-NC v2.2 are outlined in the LEED-NC v2.2 Reference Guide and are not identical to the testing procedure outlined in the 10/8/2002 CIR (applicable to LEED-NC v2.1). The reference guide has more stringent maximum concentration requirements and additional testing procedure guidelines. Also note, the air contaminants from swimming pool chemicals, such as chlorine, will not affect the concentration levels tested for this credit. Applicable Internationally. " "None" "None" "X" "LEED Interpretation" "3701" "2007-02-12" "New Construction, Schools - New Construction, Commercial Interiors, Existing Buildings" "EQc3.2 - Construction IAQ management plan - before occupancy" "The project is a 15,000sf fire station in Texas.\nTo protect the building\'s HVAC system, we will be flushing out the building using a temporary heating unit using 100% outside air. We will use the equivalent performance methodology of providing 14,000ft3/ft2 and ending the flush out on the 14th day after construction, while maintaing 60 degrees. This unit will not be tied to the building\'s ductwork.\nThe construction schedule for the project requires that the building be occupied in stages.\nWe are proposing the following plan\n1. Flush out the first half of the living quarters portion by dividing the building with doors and by providing a temporary air-tight enclosure in a corridor. All vents and return air grilles will be sealed to avoid any cross contamination.\n\n2. Flush out the second half of the living quarters portion by the process outlined above.\n\n3. We are not planning to flush out the apparatus bay and the supporting rooms. These rooms do not have doors and open directly onto the bay. The bay does have unit heaters mounted high above the floor that serve to protect the equipment from extreme cold and to prevent the piping from freezing. The supporting rooms do not have any heaters or HVAC equipment. Our understanding is that flush out would not be necessary because of the nature of these spaces and because they are not served by a HVAC system. It would not be possible to flush them out using the standard LEED methodology of using the installed HVAC systems. Further, the bay usually has at least one 14x14 door open when the fire suppression personal are in there.\nOur request for interpretation is if this plan is acceptable." "This CIR appears to be in two parts. 1) Can the project, using the equivalent performance methodology, be flushed out in phases? 2) Can the apparatus bay and supporting rooms be excluded from the requirement for flush out?\nIn response to the first part, previously posted NC v2.0/2.1 CIR rulings, dated 10/17/2001, 9/5/2006 and 10/23/06, approve the process for a staggered flush-out approach, provided that existing spaces are protected from construction-related contamination as well as prevention of cross-contamination between systems. Protection measures should follow the SMACNA Guidelines for Occupied Buildings and be outlined in the Construction IAQ Management Plan to ensure compliance.\n\nAlso, the use of temporary ventilation units to accomplish the flush-out using the 14,000 ft3 / ft2 alternate approach described in the NC v2.0/2.1, 10/4/2004 credit ruling is acceptable, assuming the temporary units are capable of meeting the temperature and humidity targets.\nIn response to the second part, the apparatus bay and supporting rooms are considered part of the entire submitted project and therefore must be considered part of the square footage calculated for this credit.\n\nThe intent of this credit is to eliminate indoor air quality problems that occur as a result of construction. The use of outside air for flushout of the building is intended to reduce contaminants that are the result of the construction process.\n\nIn order to achieve EQ credit 3.2, all ""Occupied spaces"" as defined in ASHRAE 62.1-2004 must either:\n(1) demonstrate that natural flush-out through the use of the 14X14 operable door, and/or temporary HVAC units, provides an equivalent of supplying a total air volume of 14,000 ft3 of outdoor air per ft2 of floor area while maintaining an internal temperature of at least 60" "None" "None" "X" "LEED Interpretation" "5486" "2004-10-04" "New Construction" "EQc3.2 - Construction IAQ management plan - after construction" "ASHRAE recently published a technical feature ""Flushing Out Dust, VOCs"" by Dan Morris spring 2004. In this article one of the strategies outlined is Plan D: Intermittent Flush-Out (text is included below). For our project (and other similar projects) this appears to be a good way to get around the difficulties of finding two weeks to flush the building in a very accelerated schedule. Question: 1) Is this an acceptable alternate to the two week flush out? 2) The article stated that this procedure had been submitted as an equal. True? Is USGBC reviewing this? Plan D: Intermittent Flush-Out The goal of the intermittent flush-out is to reduce the level of all indoor air pollutants prior to occupancy by purging them from the building via portable fans and the HVAC system. Conditioning the outdoor air is required in many climates to avoid rapid changes in temperature and humidity. To conduct an intermittent flush-out before occupancy, we offer the following guidelines: " "USGBC did not receive Figures 1 and 2 (note that attachments are not possible), but they were not necessary for this ruling. Your proposed methodology does not satisfy the credit requirements. However, LEED offers alternative compliance methods as noted in EQc3.2 credit rulings dated 9/8/2004 (flush-out) and 10/8/02 (indoor air testing). The alternative method to meet flush-out requirements via systems that cannot draw 100% outside air was carefully assessed for equivalent performance. Regarding your second question: you must contact the design team of the subject project to obtain this information. USGBC does not provide access to reviews of projects to anyone other than the people submitting it. " "None" "None" "LEED Interpretation" "5491" "2006-10-23" "New Construction" "EQc3.2 - Construction IAQ management plan - after construction" "BACKGROUND This credit interpretation request is specific to interpretation of EQ Credit #3.2 ""Construction IAQ Management Plan: Before Occupancy "" under version 2.1. The intent of this credit is ""to prevent indoor air quality problems resulting from the construction process in order to help sustain the comfort and well-being of construction workers and building occupants"". We believe the approach described below will achieve that intent. The Mazankowski Alberta Heart Institute Project is an expansion to the Walter C. MacKenzie Center, an existing active treatment hospital of approximately 2,000,000 square feet of occupied space. The Mazankowski Alberta Heart Institute will connect to the Walter C. MacKenzie Center through several corridors that will be isolated from the main building until the Heart Institute is occupied. The heart institute is a multi-storey building of approximately 350,00 Square Feet of occupied space consisting of 8 occupied floors each with an interstitial floor above to house building systems. The interstitial floors are completely separated from the occupied floors. The ventilation systems serving the building are configured such that central air systems provide 100% outdoor air to all occupied floors from the 2nd floor to the 8th floor. The main and lower levels are served from air systems that re-circulate a portion of the building air. Each occupied floor and each interstitial floor are separated into a minimum of 3 Fire compartments. Supply and exhaust air for each fire compartment can be isolated by closing smoke dampers in the supply and exhaust ductwork serving the respective fire compartment. The construction and occupancy schedule for the project requires that the building be occupied in stages. These stages would be at a minimum fire compartment by fire compartment and more likely floor by floor. REQUEST We are requesting that the USGBC interpret Credit 3.2 to allow ""Before Occupancy"" flushing to be conducted on a fire zone by fire zone basis for the Mazankowski Alberta Heart Institute. All unoccupied zones would be isolated from the occupied zones by closing the smoke dampers and taping off man doors serving unoccupied zones. The zones being flushed would utilize the main air systems to allow for the two-week building flush out period prescribed in the discussion for EQ Credit #3.2. The 2nd through 8th floors are served by air systems designed to provide 100% outdoor air. Therefore there will be no recirculation of the air from the occupied or flush-out spaces. For the lower and main floors served by a system that permits re-circulated air, these systems will be controlled so that 100% outdoor air is supplied through this system during the flush out period. " "The CIR is inquiring if it is possible to conduct the two-week flush-out of a building in stages to allow for a staggered construction completion schedule. The inquiry indicates that the building floors and/or zones can be separated physically from adjacent spaces, to ensure no cross contamination from construction in the incomplete areas, while providing 100% outside air to accomplish the flush out. Previously posted CIR rulings, dated 10/17/2001 and 9/5/2006 approve the process for a staggered flush-out approach, provided that existing spaces are protected from construction-related contamination as well as prevention of cross-contamination between systems. Protection measures should follow the SMACNA Guidelines for Occupied Buildings and be outlined in the Construction IAQ Management Plan to ensure compliance. Applicable Internationally. " "None" "None" "X" "LEED Interpretation" "5568" "2003-05-16" "New Construction" "EQc3.2 - Construction IAQ management plan - after construction" "For the CNT Renovation, we propose for EQ Credit 3.2 to do baseline indoor air quality testing adapted from the EPA Protocol for Environmental Requirements. This includes the following sampling schedule: OUTSIDE BUILDING 1- Temperature and Humidity 1- CO2 and CO 1- Mold and mildew (viable fungal bioaerosals) 1- Formaldehyde 1- Total VOCs 1- Data track sample for 2.5-micron or smaller size particles 1- Sample for identifying particulates and size distribution 1st FLOOR (approx, 8,000 sq. ft. gross floor area each) 2- Temperature and Humidity 2- CO2 and CO 2- Mold and Mildew 2- Formaldehyde 2- Total VOCs 2- 4-Phenylcyclohexane 2- Total Particles 2- Other organic regulated pollutants such as NOx and SOx 2- Data track sample for 2.5-micron or smaller size particles 2- Sample for identifying particulates and size distribution 2nd and 3rd FLOOR (approx 3,000 sq. ft. gross floor area each) A sample of each of the above per floor We are adding to the protocol sampling for sub 2.5 micron particulates-both inside air and outside air. This particular air pollutant appears to be the most difficult to control in Chicago now that good progress has been made in the last several years to reduce ozone levels and other air pollutants to meet Federal and State standards. These measurements are especially pertinent to CNT since the building is located on a street with considerable auto and diesel semi- truck traffic. (The major sources of sub-2.5 micron particulates are diesel exhaust, coal-fired power plant emissions and the wear of radial tires). These measurements will be compared against the new EPA standards that are expected to be enforced within the next 12 months. We also propose to do these tests after occupancy begins during normal occupied periods under normal operation of the HVAC system. This is the only way we will be able to test the whole building since the renovation is being done in two phases in order to enable the staff to stay in the building during the renovation (by moving the staff within the building during the renovation.) We also save substantial money in the testing by doing it one time rather than bringing the consultant and their equipment out twice. We will also be documenting the amount of outside air (cfm) entering the building during the sampling period. We believe this will give useful information on the quality of the air to which the staff will be actually be exposed. This approach is consistent with the intent of flushing out the building for two weeks-to prepare the space for the occupants. The Owner and Contractor decided they could not afford that long a period of flushout in the project schedule. Instead we are planning a 24 hour flushout at 100% outside air. " "Compliance for IEQ Credit 3.2 can be achieved as detailed in the LEED-NC Rating System (a two week flush-out or IAQ testing according to the referenced standard) or the alternative EQc3.2 in LEED for Commercial Interiors (as per the credit ruling dated 10/8/2002). Your proposal is very similar to the latter. Testing must occur when the renovation is complete, and can be done with occupants in place. If maximum concentration levels are exceeded, a partial or full flush-out for two weeks or less must be performed, followed by a retest to indicate the requirements have been met. Applicable Internationally. " "None" "None" "X" "LEED Interpretation" "5598" "2004-05-03" "New Construction" "EQc3.2 - Construction IAQ management plan - after construction" "In a credit interpretation dated (EQc32) 10/17/2001, the following ruling was issued relative to permissible furnishings to be installed prior to flushout: 3. Punch-list items are part of construction and must be completed prior to building flush out. Commissioning is not part of construction and, as long as the process of commissioning does not introduce any additional contaminants into the building, may occur during flush out. Moving items into the building such as furniture may add a chemical sink to the interior of the building. Porous items can absorb VOC\'s and chemical vapors and may defeat the purpose of the flush out. Non-porous items such as metal furniture, however, are acceptable. Specific activities forbidden during flush out include any construction work. The Wind NRG facility is approaching its flushout period. We understand from the above ruling that metal furnishings may be moved in prior to flushout. We also assume hardwood furniture that does not have cushions can be moved in prior to flushout. Also scheduled to be installed prior to flushout are NYSAN roll-down shades. These are polyester fabric with approximately 6% light transmission (for use in vision windows in work areas for sunny days.) The fabric looks like a dense screen, it is not soft or thick, and does not appear, to us, to be absorbent. The contractor would like to get these installed prior to flushout, as these are part of the construction contract and therefore part of the punchlist, which, according to the above, are supposed to be completed prior to flushout. Based on the above CIR ruling, we are excluding the open office workstation systems, which include acoustic panels which have absorbent material, until after flushout. Couches and chairs with soft seat cushions will also be excluded prior to flushout. The ceiling tiles need to be completed prior to flushout, as installation is a dust generating activity. We assume USGBC has no argument with this, but I would like USGBC\'s comment on the fact that ceiling tiles tend to be absorbent. In summary, please be specific about which of the above items we can install prior to flushout and those which we can not install prior. (wood furniture, wood furniture with cushions, couches, NYSAN shades, work-station acoustic panels, ceiling tiles.)" "The project is requesting additional information on which materials should be installed prior to the building flush-out beyond the information given in the CIR dated 10/17/2001. Additional clarification is given in a CIR dated 3/8/2004. As stated, the order of materials installed will vary somewhat across projects based on the architect, contractors, scope of work, and therefore there is some flexibility within this credit. As an example, if the window shades noted in the inquiry are considered part of the architectural finishes, then they must be installed prior to the building flush-out. Project teams may choose to install furniture before or after the flush-out. USGBC can not rule on the order of furniture installation versus flush-out because of the many project-specific variables (e.g., scope of work; conventional furniture vs. low-emitting furniture; the amount of time for potential chemical absorption between installation and flush-out). If furniture is in the LEED project scope of work, then there is opportunity to assess the situation and choose the most beneficial option. Ceiling tiles, which are considered an architectural finish, must be installed prior to the flushout because they are generally required for proper functioning of the mechanical systems, and because they are a source of dust during installation. Note that because ceiling tiles are absorbent, they should be installed after wet products such as paints and sealants. This phasing should be part of a construction IAQ management plan, which is addressed under EQc3.1. Applicable internationally.\n\nUPDATE 10/1/12: This LEED Interpretation has been made ""Not Applicable"" to all rating systems other than NCv.20 and NCv2.1" "1955, 6017, 5979" "None" "X" "LEED Interpretation" "5662" "2004-10-04" "New Construction" "EQc3.2 - Construction IAQ management plan - after construction" "Merrill Hall is a reconstruction of the 17,022 gsf main educational building for the Center for Urban Horticulture at the University of Washington. The building includes public spaces, lab facilities, academic offices, a library, classrooms, and a separate, but attached greenhouse. We have implemented an Indoor Air Quality Management Plan for the construction phase in accordance with Credit EQ 3.1 and plan to perform a pre-occupancy flush of the building per EQ 3.2. Our building includes both mechanically and naturally ventilated portions, and our question relates to requirements for the naturally ventilated spaces. The naturally ventilated spaces comprise the classrooms and the separate, but attached, greenhouse. We consider that these areas do not require mechanical flushing to meet the requirements of this credit based on the following. The naturally ventilated classrooms have been finished with low-emitting finishes meeting the requirements of Credits EQ 4.1, 4.2, and 4.3. Casework that contained urea-formaldehyde composite wood was held at a warehouse for four weeks before installation and is only installed in the labs with mechanical ventilation. Some bamboo flooring was donated to the project that does contain added urea-formaldehyde in the glue. This will be installed in a naturally ventilated area, but has already been on site off-gassing for over a year. These spaces will have been finished out and naturally ventilated for approximately two months before the building is occupied. The attached greenhouse will be constructed of glass, steel, and concrete and will contain no VOC-emitting finish materials. Since these naturally ventilated spaces contain no ductwork, are finished with low or no-VOC-emitting finishes, and in the case of the classrooms, will have had sufficient time to off-gas any volatiles prior to occupancy, we consider these spaces do not need mechanical flushing to prevent indoor air quality problems. In addition, these areas will be isolated to prevent cross-contamination during flushing of the mechanically ventilated spaces. Please confirm that our approach to pre-occupancy flushout of Merrill Hall meets the intent of EQ Credit 3.2." "LEED provides two ways to achieve EQ Credit 3.2. The naturally ventilated classrooms can achieve this credit by: (1) demonstrate that the two months of natural ventilation flush-out provided an equivalent of supplying a total air volume of 14,000 ft3 of outdoor air per ft2 of floor area while maintaining an internal temperature of at least 60o F and, where mechanical cooling is operated, relative humidity no higher than 60% (per EQc3.2 ruling dated 9/8/04); or (2) performing baseline indoor air quality testing as referenced in the LEED-NC v2.1 Reference Guide or EAc3.2 credit ruling dated 10/8/02. The greenhouse does not require the flush out or testing because no absorptive materials for mold growth or VOC absorption/off-gassing are incorporated in the structure or interior finishes. Applicable internationally." "None" "None" "X" "LEED Interpretation" "5667" "2003-03-13" "New Construction" "EQc3.2 - Construction IAQ management plan - after construction" "On a large commercial highrise core-and-shell project, the flooring, paints, hallway carpeting, and other pre-tenant improvement finish features are identical on every floor. One floor is aready occupied; the rest are currently vacant (although others will be soon occupied). Because of the time of year, the two-week flushout is not practical for this building, and testing every floor would be very costly simply to document practices that were already performed. We propose that we can meet the intent of this credit by: 1. conducting the IAQ tests in every 25,000 sf space or continguous floor area, whichever is larger, as approved in the CIR ruling dated 9/6/2002, but on only one floor as a respresentative sample of the building, 2. have our mechancial engineer or general contractor certify that every floor is finished identically, and that the occupied floor was finished identically to the tested floor prior to any tenant improvement work. " "The intent of this credit is to eliminate indoor air quality problems that occur as a result of construction. Architectural finishes used in tenant build-outs constitute a significant source of air pollutants, and must be addressed if a project would like to achieve EQ Credit 3.1 and/or 3.2 within the ""LEED for New Construction"" rating system. If significant build-outs remain to be completed at the time of the LEED certification review (as is the assumed case for your core and shell project), EQ Credit 3.2 is not applicable unless the project follows the guidance of the Administrative CIR dated 5/17/2002 (located in the ""Administrative Inquiries"" section) regarding build-out requirements for leases. Testing one floor to represent all other floors in the building is not acceptable, as tenant build-outs invariably contain different types and amounts of materials. Finished spaces can be tested per the referenced standard or as stated in the CIR dated 9/6/2002 (in this section). Upcoming core and shell projects are advised to use the ""LEED - Core and Shell"" rating system that has been developed. Applicable internationally." "None" "None" "X" "LEED Interpretation" "5679" "2004-05-24" "New Construction" "EQc3.2 - Construction IAQ management plan - after construction" "Our building is a 4 story mixed use residential project comprised of 4 floors with condominium units (52 units total), and retail space on half of the ground floor. Each of the condo units incorporates general exhaust, and is provided with a heat recovery unit, with 100% outside air. These units can only be operated with 100% outside air (there is no possibility of return air). We have followed the guidelines for EQ credit 3.1, Construction IAQ management plan - During Construction. Units serving the condo spaces will not be used during construction, and duct openings will be sealed with plastic. Our questions relate to the following statement, from the credit requirement: ""After the flushout, replace the filtration media with new MERV 13 filtration media, except the filters solely processing outside air."" Does this statement intend that after the pre-occupancy flushout period, MERV 13 filtration media is not required in air handlers which process 100% outside air? Or is the intent that MERV 13 filtration still be used on 100% outside air units, but new filters are not required after the flush-out period (that is, the 100% outside air exception refers only to replacement of flush-out filters)? Additionally, for units which will solely process outside air throughout occupancy of the building, is MERV 13 filtration media required during the pre-occupancy building flushout? The language both in the LEED 2.1 Reference Guide, as well as in the CIR responses to date, implies that the intent of the credit is to eliminate indoor air quality problems that occur as a result of construction, or originate within the building space and are re-introduced in return air. For this reason, it appears that 100% outside air units meet the intent of this credit without the use of MERV 13 filtration media. If this is correct, is there a minimum filtration requirement for 100% outside air units during building occupancy? Please clarify. " "All filters, whether they process return or outside air, must meet the MERV 13 requirement during building flush-out and occupancy. The filters that solely process outside air do not need to be replaced after the flush-out. " "None" "None" "LEED Interpretation" "5695" "2003-10-20" "New Construction" "EQc3.2 - Construction IAQ management plan - after construction" "Our LEED team has developed a 2-week building flush-out protocol for credit 3.2; however, our mechanical engineers have requested some clarification regarding the building flush out requirements to ensure that the procedure is executed in strict accordance with LEED. Credit 3.2 requires a minimum two-week building flush-out with new filtration media at 100% outside air after construction ends and prior to occupancy. Shall we interpret this to mean 100% of the air handlers outside air capacity or 100% outside air with zero return air? If 100% outside air with no return air is required, this implies that air handlers should be equipped with airside economizers sized for 100% of design airflow. Typically, economizers are not practical or advisable in hot-humid climates. West Palm Beach has design temperatures of 90" "The use of 100% outside air for flushout of the building is intended to quickly and fully remove odors and VOCs that are the result of the construction process. If the air is not fully exhausted during the flushout period, VOCs and contaminants are continuously recirculated throughout the entire building. The proposal for extending the flushout period in lieu of using 100% outside air is not an acceptable alternative. The credit allows for IAQ testing prior to occupancy as an alternative to building flushout procedures. Additionally, a previous credit ruling (dated 10/8/2002) provides an alternative on-site IAQ testing procedure that can be used to achieve this credit. Applicable internationally." "None" "None" "X" "LEED Interpretation" "5897" "2004-08-03" "New Construction" "EQc3.2 - Construction IAQ management plan - after construction" "The project is a 5-story 110,000 square foot juvenile courthouse located in Atlanta, Georgia. We are seeking to obtain credit IEQ 3.2. This credit allows for two paths: a minimum two-week flush-out, or a baseline indoor air quality testing procedure consistent with the United States EPA\'s current Protocol for Environmental Requirements, Baseline IAQ and Materials, for the Research Triangle Park Campus, Section 01445. Because the project is located in a humid climate, we feel it is not in the occupant\'s best interest to perform a building flush out. We have therefore elected to conduct the baseline to meet the credit. We seek to comply with the EPA\'s baseline by testing each floor in areas not having high outside air ventilation rates, with samples collected during normal business hours while the building is operating at normal HVAC rates. We will sample outside air levels of formaldehyde and TVOC contaminants simultaneously to testing the indoor areas. The indoor test sites will be between 4\' and 7\' within each space tested. 4-Phenylcyclohexene (4-PC) is a containment almost exclusively found in carpet backing using styrene-butadienelatex rubber (SBR). We are seeking to fulfill MR Credit 4.3 (Low Emitting Carpet), and therefore the carpet specified for our project will meet or exceed the Carpet and Rug Institute\'s Green Label, which requires a maximum of .05 micrograms per cubic meter. This is well below the 3 micrograms per cubic meter allowed by the EPA\'s Protocol for Environmental Requirements. The required tests for carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, airborne mold and mildew, formaldehyde, TVOC, PM, and regulated pollutants will be performed in the required 16 locations on three days. Because the carpet installed in the project will not contain the offending SBR, we propose testing for 4-PC in five locations for three days. In our option, it is not cost conscious to perform the full testing regimen for a substance that has not been introduced into the building. Our questions is as follows: Assuming the tests find acceptable levels of all tested pollutants, would this be sufficient to meet the credit requirements? " "If the installed carpets meet the provisions outlined in EQ Credit 4.3 (Low Emitting Materials - Carpets), testing in five locations will suffice provided the tested spaces are carpeted areas and test results prove well under the reference standard threshold. If, however, the testing produces readings that approach the 3 mg/cubic meter in any of the 5 test locations, further testing of the remaining 11 locations should be conducted. This will verify that all locations are in compliance with the reference standard. Another option available to the project is to conform to the ""alternative air testing procedure"" as allowed in the CIR EQc3.2 ruling dated 10/8/2002 (references the proposed ""Alternate EQc3.2 Requirement"" in the draft of LEED for Commercial Interiors). " "None" "None" "LEED Interpretation" "5931" "2005-05-10" "New Construction" "EQc3.2 - Construction IAQ management plan - after construction" "This CIR is to a request for clarification for the 9/8/04 CIR Ruling regarding equivalent performance methodology for flush out. First we want to confirm that if the specified volume of air is provided in less than a 2-week period that this is acceptable. Second, we want to confirm that it is acceptable to complete the volumetric flush out without operating the permanent units. In an effort to protect the permanent HVAC system and provide superior indoor air quality, we are proposing to conduct the flush out using a temporary 100% outside air HVAC unit (with MERV 13 filters), which will also maintain the space temperature and humidity within the specified ranges in the 9/8/2004 Ruling. The permanent units will not be operated and the duct openings will be sealed until after the flush out period has been completed using the temporary HVAC units. (Note: For our project a 3,000 cfm temporary unit will supply the required total air volume in five days.) Additionally, we understand from the 11/29/04 Ruling that the flush out period must be scheduled to allow installed materials to off gas for two weeks after the installation of emitting materials. Therefore, under the proposed strategy, the last of the emitting materials will be installed 9 days prior to the start of the flush out period. Before we proceeded under these assumptions, we wanted to receive feedback on the likely outcome of this overall strategy. Note: If two-week off-gassing period is required as stated in the 11/29/04 Ruling, this information needs to be captured in the revisions proposed for v2.2. " "The use of temporary ventilation units to accomplish the flush-out using the 14,000 ft3 / ft2 alternate approach described in the 9/8/2004 credit ruling is acceptable, assuming the temporary units are capable of meeting the temperature and humidity targets. Per the 11/29/2004 Ruling, projects using this alternate path must schedule the flush-out such that it concludes at or later than two weeks after construction ends in order to expel the majority of product off-gassing. Applicable internationally." "None" "None" "X" "LEED Interpretation" "5939" "2004-05-03" "New Construction" "EQc3.2 - Construction IAQ management plan - after construction" "This Credit Interpretation request is in reference to the EQ Credit 3.2 (Construction IAQ Management Plan - Before Occupancy). In lieu of the two-week building flushout, our team has chosen to perform baseline IAQ testing. Per the Credit Interpretation Ruling on 10/8/2002, we will utilize an alternative on-site IAQ testing procedure to the method described in the LEED Reference Guide. Although the credit interpretation is clear to the methodology allowed, our team still has a question regarding specifics of the allowed testing procedure. One sample each for airborne particulate levels, formaldehyde, 4-PCH, and total volatile organic compounds (TVOC) will be collected on each occupied floor of the building. Because there is no approved analytical technique for ""total organic compounds, the TVOC sample will be collected and analyzed in accordance with the US EPA\'s TO-17 procedure. These samples will all be collected prior to building occupancy. Please let us know if this method of sample collection and testing is acceptable. " "Based on the 10/8/2002 CIR ruling noted above, TVOC measurement results must be below 500 micrograms / cubic meter to qualify under this alternative testing approach. Any widely recognized testing methodology is acceptable, so long as the team can document that the TVOC count is not more than 500 micrograms / cubic meter. Applicable internationally." "None" "None" "X" "LEED Interpretation" "6017" "2005-03-07" "New Construction, Core and Shell, Schools - New Construction, Retail - Commercial Interiors, Healthcare" "EQc3.2 - Construction IAQ management plan - before occupancy" "We are planning on performing a 2 week building flush out as required by EQ cr3.2. Due to schedule constraints, it would be helpful if the Owner were allowed to set up used, moveable office partitions, and install new auditorium seating during the flush out period. The used, moveable office partitions are from another building, and have, theoretically, already off-gassed. Would it be acceptable to perform one or both of these operations during flush out?" "Several CIRs have addressed this issue, including CIR ruling 12/21/2004, ""Note that LEED-NC prefers, but does not require, the flush to occur before furniture installation."" The proposed furniture installation schedule, though not recommended, would still be acceptable under this credit. Applicable internationally.\n\nUPDATE 10/1/12: this LEED Interpretation is not applicable to LEED-CI. Furniture must be installed before the flush-out for LEED-CI projects." "1955, 5598, 5979" "None" "X" "LEED Interpretation" "6030" "2001-10-17" "New Construction" "EQc3.2 - Construction IAQ management plan - after construction" "We are submitting this credit interpretation for an Elementary School currently under construction. Our construction team has developed both a detailed Construction Indoor Air Quality Management Plan (for Credit 3.1) and a 2-week Building Flushout Protocol (for credit 3.2), but as we begin to implement the Plan, the primary contractors have requested a number of clarifications to ensure that the Plan is executed in strict accordance with LEED requirements: 1. Credit 3.1 requires that all filtration media be replaced immediately prior to occupancy, and Credit 3.2 requires that all filtration media be replaced immediately prior to the flushout. Shall we interpret this to mean that all filtration media in the facility needs to be replaced both before AND after the 2-week flushout in order to capture both points? Or is there an optimal time to replace filters only once in relation to the flushout and building occupancy? 2. Our building is comprised of several wings, which can be separated from each other physically and whose mechanical systems can be run independently. Is it acceptable to flush out sections of the building as they are completed, rather than waiting until the very end to flush out the entire building (this will be important because the administrative areas will need to be used before the classroom wings, and we have scheduled construction such that that area will be completed and ready for flushout several weeks earlier)? 3. Because our facility is a school, and must open on a certain non-negotiable date, our construction team would like to allow certain, non polluting, activities to occur during the 2-week flushout period (examples include: finishing the building commissioning, completing minor punch-list items, and allowing teachers to move belongings into their rooms but not regularly occupy those spaces). Are these and similar activities permissible during the flushout period? Are there any strictly forbidden activities that we need to expressly prohibit during the flushout period?" "1. The new filtration media replaced immediately prior to building flush out may be used as the same filtration media required by EQ credit 3.1, for filtration media that filters incoming air only. -- *NOTE (Nov 1 2007): Per errata posted in Fall 2007, there is no LEED or ASHRAE 52.2-1999 requirement for MERV 13 filtration during construction. LEED-NCv2.1 EQc3.1 requires MERV 8 filters on return air grills during construction, and for all filtration media to be replaced with MERV 13 immediately prior to occupancy/at the end of construction. LEED-NCv2.1 EQc3.2 (option one) requires MERV 13 filtration media at 100% outside air during flush out. -- 2. If the wings are separated physically during the phased completion of the project and the mechanical systems can be made to operate separately, then it is acceptable to flush out the wings of the building as they are completed, assuming no additional construction work will be required in those wings. Once the completed wings have been flushed out, maintain separation from areas under construction per SMACNA Guidelines for Occupied Buildings. 3. Punch-list items are part of construction and must be completed prior to building flush out. Commissioning is not part of construction and, as long as the process of commissioning does not introduce any additional contaminants into the building, may occur during flush out. Moving items into the building such as furniture may add a chemical sink to the interior of the building. Porous items can absorb VOC\'s and chemical vapors and may defeat the purpose of the flush out. Non-porous items such as metal furniture, however, are acceptable. Specific activities forbidden during flush out include any construction work." "None" "None" "LEED Interpretation" "695" "2004-01-21" "New Construction, Existing Buildings, Commercial Interiors, Core and Shell, Schools - New Construction" "EQc3.2 - Construction IAQ management plan - after construction" "This request is an appeal to a CIR submitted for Hillsboro Civic Center. We are requesting the use of dynamic air cleaners, utilizing ultra-violet germicidal irradiation (UVGI), as equivalent to MERV 13 static filtration media. 1.) The basis for rejection seems to rest solely on the fact that LEED references ASHRAE 52.2. Indeed, the ruling states that ""USGBC would prefer to allow the use of effective dynamic filters for compliance."" It can be proven that the proposed method filters particles to the level of MERV 13 and, therefore, meets the criteria of the standard. 2.) The International Mechanical Code allows the implementation of alternative materials and methods (Section 105.2) for equivalent compliance to those prescribed in its code. The IMC has this provision because it recognizes that technology changes more quickly than building codes. If a technology can be shown to be consistent with the intent of a standard and equivalent in performance, it is allowed. 3.) MERV 8 and 13 are cited as minimum levels of performance in EQ Credit 3. The purpose seems clearly to provide a minimum standard of air quality in buildings, not to promote the use of static filters. If a technology can be shown to produce equal or superior levels of air quality, there is no sound basis for rejection. 4.) In disallowing the request, it was cited that approval would require a substantial change to the credit as currently written and that the CIR process was not the appropriate forum for facilitating such a change. The project team is not asking for a change to the credit, only recognition that dynamic filtration exceeds the standard of compliance. 5.) The project team initially requested that this technology be granted a point for Innovation and Design. That request was denied on the basis that the system did not represent superior or exemplary performance (see CIR dated 7/10/03). If this innovation does not represent superior or exemplary performance to a standard LEED credit, then it is implied that it does, in fact, meet the standard credit. Since EQ Credits 3.1 and 3.2 are the only ones that address filtration of HVAC equipment, at a minimum, a superior filtration method to the ones cited in the reference standard should be granted equivalent status. Research studies have proven the effectiveness of UVGI. Penn State University's Department of Aerobiological Engineering performed one such research study. Many other health organizations including the Centers for Disease Control, and The Lancet medical journal support these findings. http://www.arche.psu.edu/iec/abe/wjkuvgi.html http://www.phppo.cdc.gov/cdcrecommends/showarticle.asp?a_artid=M0035909&TopNum=50&CallPg=Adv http://www.thelancet.com/ (search for ôUVGIö) http://www.katu.com/health/story.asp?ID=62778 Dynamic air cleaners and other active filtration technologies, are entirely consistent with the overall goals of USGBC and LEED to ""produce a new generation of buildings that deliver high performance inside and out"" and ""that are environmentally responsible, profitable and healthy places to live and work."" In fact, because dynamic air cleaners consume less energy and the glass-fiber media can be recycled, they would seem to be more in line with these goals than MERV 13 passive filters. Due to its superiority, this technology is being considered by the Department of Defense and Department of Homeland Security for use in critical facilities to combat bio-terrorism. In light all this evidence, we ask the committee to reconsider its previous decision and allow the use of the proposed filtration method to satisfy the criteria of LEED EQ Credits 3.1 and 3.2." "The project is appealing a 10/17/03 IEQ Credit 3.1 CIR and requests approval to use an alternative filtration method for installation after construction and prior to occupancy. The CIR was submitted under EQ Credit 3.2, but this ruling applies to both 3.1 and 3.2. The project has raised a number of strong arguments in making their case for the use of dynamic filters. However, there are some overriding concerns that lead the USGBC to remain cautious about this issue. To date, there are no studies that we are aware of that clearly equate the performance of electronic filters with those of passive filters. The requirements for these credits are based on the requirements of ASHRAE 52.2-1999, which define the Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV) of 13, as ""the ability of the device to remove particles from the airstream and its resistance to air flow."" The standard specifically states that the testing methods cannot be used to test electronic air filters. This issue is of concern because while the removal efficiency of a MERV 13 filter increases with use, research indicates that an electronic air cleaner\'s performance deteriorates rapidly, and it is therefore difficult to equate performance over time. In addition, the performance of the electronic filters depends greatly on frequent and thorough cleaning, which was not addressed in the CIR. As mentioned in the original ruling, the ASHRAE 52 sub-committee is in the process of reviewing testing methods for electronic filters, and is likely to issue an addendum to ASHRAE 52.2 in the near future. Once ASHRAE established an equivalency (hopefully before your project is submitted for LEED certification review), the USGBC will adjust its criteria accordingly. Until that time, MERV 13 filters will be required for both EQc3.1 and 3.2. -- *NOTE (Nov 1 2007): Per EQc3.1 errata posted in Fall 2007, there is no LEED or ASHRAE 52.2-1999 requirement for MERV 13 filtration during construction. LEED-NCv2.1 EQc3.1 requires MERV 8 filters on return air grills during construction, and for all filtration media to be replaced with MERV 13 immediately prior to occupancy/at the end of construction. LEED-NCv2.1 EQc3.2 (option one) requires MERV 13 filtration media at 100% outside air during flush out. Applicable Internationally." "None" "None" "X"