Reduced site disturbance - protect or restore open space | U.S. Green Building Council
Please upgrade your browser. This site requires a newer version to work correctly. Read more
Our "watch" feature allows you to stay current on all aspects of this specific credit. In your account, you can control what you get updated on and how you receive your notifications. Hide

LEED O+M: Existing Buildings | v2 - LEED 2.0

Reduced site disturbance - protect or restore open space

SSc4 | Possible 2 points


Conserve existing natural areas and restore damaged areas to provide habitat and promote biodiversity.


Have in place over the performance period, native or adapted vegetation or other ecologically appropriate features:

  • SS Credit 4.1: Covering a minimum of 50% of the site area excluding the building footprint. (1 point)
  • SS Credit 4.2: Covering a minimum of 75% of the site area excluding the building footprint. (1 point)

Improving/maintaining off-site areas with native or adapted plants or other ecologically appropriate features can count toward earning both SS Credit 4.1 and 4.2. Every 2 square feet off-site will be counted as 1 square foot on-site. Off-site areas must be documented with a contract with the owner of the off-site area that
specifies the required improvement and maintenance of the off-site area.

Native/Adapted Plants are those that are indigenous to a locality or cultivars of native plant materials that have adapted to the local climate and are not considered invasive species or noxious weeds. Such plants require only limited irrigation water for sustenance once established, and do not require active maintenance such as mowing. Native/Adapted Plants should provide habitat value and promote biodiversity through avoidance of monoculture plantings.

Other ecologically appropriate features are natural site elements beyond vegetation that maintain or restore the ecological integrity of the site, and may include water bodies, exposed rock, un-vegetated ground, or other features that are part of the historic natural landscape within the region and provide habitat value.

Join LEEDuser

Ask questions, share tips, and get notified of new forum posts by joining LEEDuser, a tool developed by BuildingGreen and supported by USGBC!

  • Share on Twitter
  • Share on Facebook
  • Share on LinkedIn
  • Print to PDF
Sample forms
View sample forms