The researchers’ comparison examines the indoor climate issue in a holistic perspective, focusing on four main categories, each with a number of subcategories:
- Thermal indoor climate (including utility temperature, cooling and draughts)
- Acoustics (including reverberation time and sound insulation)
- Visual indoor climate (including daylight, electric light and field of view)
- Indoor air quality (including ventilation capacity, air filtration and degassing from materials)
The comparison also assesses users’ possibility of controlling the indoor climate by means of ventilation and temperature adjustment, for example.
Out of all the criteria examined, only indoor air quality and user controls are included in all the schemes. In LEED and LBC in particular, air quality is weighted particularly heavily, while the various criteria are more evenly dispersed in BREEAM, DGNB and WELL. LEED for Homes stands out from the other building certification schemes under LEED, however, as it only considers air quality. The LEED certification of other types of buildings encompasses other aspects, but as the study was aimed at dwellings, these are not apparent in the comparison.
“Generally speaking, all the certification schemes for dwellings – BREEAM, DGNB and WELL – adequately cover the four main criteria, whereas LEED and LBC do not provide a complete picture of the indoor climate. The specific subcategories included in the individual certification schemes vary somewhat. DGNB provides the broadest coverage in terms of unifying financial, environmental and social sustainability, whereas it’s beneficial to use WELL together with other certification schemes,” Tine Steen Larsen says.
>> Read more about how certification schemes assess the indoor climate in dwellings in the AAU report