The contractor had agreed to meet a silver level of certification but argued that the specifications for the project prescribed products, materials and methods that were contrary to the performance goals. The contractor had foolishly agreed to meet performance goals without control of the specifications that would enable the completed project to perform as required. Actually, this is not a green issue but a lesson about the difference between prescribed and performance standards. All said, the potential for LEEDigation has many contractors wondering how to protect themselves.
The real risk in building green is the failure to meet expectations of the project requirements. What happens when green point requirements are overlooked or the proper verification and documentation is missed?
Strategies to avoid LEEDigation:
- Define clear responsibilities of Architect, Builder and Owner.
- Avoid performance requirements.
- Establish clear prescriptive requirements (specifications).
- Develop a timeline and checklist to avoid omissions (schedule).