ASHRAE, ICC weigh feedback on building life cycle emissions draft

ASHRAE and the International Code Council invite comment to their jointly developed document, Proposed ASHRAE/ICC Standard 240P – Quantification of Life Cycle Greenhouse Gas Emissions of Buildings, through this month. The draft of the standard can be obtained and comments portal accessed at Standard 240P will provide a methodology to quantify the embodied and operational GHG emissions associated with buildings and their sites, plus requirements for documentation of life cycle GHG emissions. It is intended to support building industry stakeholders, government agencies, and the finance or investment community in implementing a common platform for measuring, reporting and acting upon buildings’ GHG emissions.

“Standard 240P will play a pivotal role in addressing embodied carbon and significantly impacting the built environment’s greenhouse gas emissions,” says 2023-24 ASHRAE President Ginger Scoggins, P.E., Fellow ASHRAE. “We are pleased to collaborate with the International Code Council on this standard, recognizing the joint effort’s potential to advance effective solutions and contribute to a more sustainable future.”


ASHRAE/ICC Standard 240P delineates measurement of embodied versus operational GHG emissions associated with building construction and use. It references procurement and delivery stages around which typical environmental product declarations are drawn.
Standard 240P authors use a carbon dioxide emissions equivalent (kgCO2e) metric from the National Ready Mixed Concrete Association Fleet Benchmarking and Costs Survey to frame a concrete delivery calculation. They contrast that number with general trucking, air, barge or rail fi gures from the Environmental Protection Agency’s current Emission Factors for Greenhouse Gas Inventories.

For the first time, New York leads the U.S. Green Building Council’s annual list of Top 10 States for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, a ranking determined by LEED-certified gross square footage per capita. The Empire State logged 201 newly LEED-certified projects in 2023; they encompassed more than 93 million square feet, equating to nearly 4.6 LEED-certified square feet per resident. Rounding out the top five states in the 2023 ranking of LEED-certified building space per capita are Illinois (3.213 sq. ft.), Massachusetts (3.210 sq. ft.), Washington (3.01 sq. ft.), and Georgia (2.56 sq. ft.). Though not officially on the list because of its non-state status, the District of Columbia continues to lead nationally with last year’s watermark of 43-plus certified square feet per capita.

“The LEED certification system is a vital tool for both organizations and governments seeking to create better living, working and learning spaces,” says USGBC CEO Peter Templeton. “The top 10 report highlights the remarkable progress of the public and private sectors towards reducing greenhouse gas emissions, health impacts, and operating costs in buildings across their states. USGBC applauds the Top 10 states for their leadership in adopting the readily available technologies and proven green building solutions needed to advance healthy, responsible, and equitable communities.”

The Council offers LEED and other industry-shaping resources to augment greenhouse gas emissions reduction in new or existing buildings. A new record was set in 2023 for adding the most LEED-certified gross square footage of green building space in a single year. In total, there were more than 6,000 LEED-certified commercial projects worldwide spanning 1.36 billion gross square feet.