White House “Zero-emissions” Building Definition

Last fall, the White House announced that it would be pursuing the development of a standardized definition of a “zero-emissions” building (ZEB) in an effort to create consistency in the private sector marketplace for measuring progress toward zero emissions.

As part of their work on this definition, they have been reaching out to certification bodies like GBI to better understand how such a definition could be embedded as part of net zero certification requirements for private sector buildings. GBI has been pleased to have an opportunity to talk with the White House as they developed their draft definition, offering suggestions to make it workable for the broadest possible range of buildings.

The current published draft of the ZEB definition, open for public comment until February 5, closely tracks many of the minimum requirements already included in GBI’s Journey to Net Zero Program. We particularly appreciate that there is a focus on high energy efficiency buildings and the recognition that certified RECs are a necessary component for net zero projects at this time.

As we finalize comments on the draft definition, we continue to appreciate the open dialogue between the White House and stakeholders as we collectively navigate these complex issues in a way that will help building owners and developers better navigate how to reduce the climate impact of their buildings. GBI will be sharing a copy of our comments on the draft later in February.

GBI’s response to the RFI questions can be found here.