NC-2009 MRc4: Recycled Content

  • Image
  • Allow time for documentation

    Documenting this credit can take time, since cost and exact percentages of post- and pre-consumer materials must be collected for each recycled item used. 

    LEED requires the base materials budget to be consistent across all MR credits. The LEED Online credit forms help provide consistency across MR credits by applying the same data to multiple credits. Materials used to earn this credit cannot also be counted for MRc3: Materials Reuse, nor for MRc7: Certified WoodWood from a source that has been determined, through a certification process, to meet stated ecological and other criteria. There are numerous forest certification programs in general use based on several standards, but only the Forest Stewardship Council's standards, which include requirements that the wood be tracked through its chain-of-custody, can be used to qualify wood for a point in the LEED Rating System., but they can contribute to MRc5: Regional Materials and MRc6: Rapidly RenewableTerm describing a natural material that is grown and harvested on a relatively short-rotation cycle (defined by the LEED rating system to be ten years or less). Materials. 

  • Most projects easily earn both points

    The 10% point threshold is easy to achieve for this credit, especially if your project has a lot of concrete or steel. There is also an increasing number of products on the market that have recycled content, making the 20% threshold achievable for some projects. Concentrate on buying “big ticket” items with high recycled content levels. Depending on the building construction, you will generally get more (due to a higher cost) out of tracking the recycled content of concrete and steel over lower cost items like tile.

    Analyze your budget early in design to help inform which materials are more important to specify as having recycled content, this is dependent on your project construction type. Doing your homework early can prevent costly change orders during construction. Big-ticket products that often have recycled content include steel, drywall, insulation, ceiling tiles, concrete, VCT, commercial carpet, and composite substrates.

    Learn the lingo

    Recycled content can be pre-consumer (also known as post-industrialRefers to material diverted from the waste stream during a manufacturing process. Excluded from this category is reutilization of materials such as scrap that are generated in a process and capable of being reclaimed within the same process. Generally synonymous with "pre-consumer."), or post-consumerWaste generated by end users (households or commercial, industrial and institutional facilities) of a product no longer able to be used for its intended purpose that is recycled into raw material for a new product.. These are valued differently in LEED calculations. Pre-consumer content is worth 50% of its cost value, while post-consumer is worth 100%.

    DRecycled  bottlesPost-consumer plastic being collected for recycling.on’t assume that because an item has recycled content you can count the whole cost of that item towards the credit—the value contributing to the credit equals the percentage of recycled content times the value of the material. (See the Recycled Content Assembly Calculator in the Documentation Toolkit.)  

    People sometimes confuse recycled content material with material reuse and with construction waste management, but they are different:

    Recycled Content material, covered in MRc4, has reused content as a result of the industrial process of making the product—for example, recycled-content carpet may be made of recycled plastic bottles. 

    Material Reuse, covered in MRc3, is the use or repurposing of material from a previous place or role—for example, buying antique wood doors salvaged from an old church. 

    Flooring panelAt this Denver building under construction, the raised floor panels being installed have recycled steel. Photo – YRG SustainabilityConstruction Waste Management, covered in MRc2, is the act of diverting materials from the landfill during the construction process by sending to a place where the material can be repurposed, such as a salvage yard or recycling plant.

  • FAQs for MRc4

    I have recycled content information for a product, but it doesn’t specify whether it is pre-consumer or post-consumer. What should I do?

    Try getting clarification from the manufacturer. If you can’t get any further information, you should take a conservative approach and assume that it is pre-consumer.

    Why can’t I include mechanical, electrical and plumbing components in this credit? What if I consistently include MEP materials in the calculations for all of the MR credits I’m attempting?

    LEED is very clear that no MEP or specialty items can be counted in the MR credit calculations. There are several reasons for this, including the fact that MEP items are very expensive relative to their weight, and including these materials skews the calculations and performance thresholds achieved. Also, LEED considers the performance of mechanical equipment paramount, and so consideration of these materials really falls under performance based energy and water credits.

    The recycled content percentage on the product data sheet is given as a range. What should I do?

    Unless the manufacturer can provide more specific information, teams must use the lower recycled content value in the given range.

    The manufacturer can't give me product-specific recycled content data, but they say that they fall within the national industry average. Can I use that?

    No. Per LEED InterpretationLEED Interpretations are official answers to technical inquiries about implementing LEED on a project. They help people understand how their projects can meet LEED requirements and provide clarity on existing options. LEED Interpretations are to be used by any project certifying under an applicable rating system. All project teams are required to adhere to all LEED Interpretations posted before their registration date. This also applies to other addenda. Adherence to rulings posted after a project registers is optional, but strongly encouraged. LEED Interpretations are published in a searchable database at usgbc.org. #10246, recycled content claims must be specific to installed product. Average regional and national claims do not meet the credit requirements.

    This Interpretation has been misinterpreted, however, to mean that recycled content figures must come from specific plants. That is not what USGBC intended. It is allowable to use a company- and product-specific national average, as long as the company has performed the necessary tracking to assure that that average is accurate at the product SKU level.

    Is the default average recycled content value of 25% for steel still allowed?

    Yes. LEED Interpretation #10246 does not apply to steel and teams may still use the default value of 25% post-consumer recycled content. Many steel products have higher levels of recycled content, however, so it may be advantageous to track down product-specific recycled content information.

    Can site materials, such as soil, be included in the MR credit calculations?

    Site materials (31.60.00 Foundations, 32.10.00 Paving, 32.30.00 Site Improvements, and 32.90.00 Planting) that are permanently installed can be included in the MR credits. Just be sure that your material budget assumptions and material costs are consistent across MRc3, MRc4, MRc5, MRc6, and MRc7.

    Are there recycled content claims that I should be wary of?

    Based on review comments that LEED users have reported, LEED reviewers are on the lookout for inaccurate recycled content claims in cases where a manufacturer is claiming pre-consumer recycled content for scrap material that comes off the end of a product line, and is put back in to the same line. According to common definitions, this should not be considered recycled content. This practice is common with certain kinds of glass, and metals like aluminum. Keep an eye on your documentation and do your best to make sure it is valid. If you are asked to justify a specific claim, you could get more documentation from the manufacturer, or plan on having a cushion in your credit threshold.

    Can I count FSC-certified MDF toward both MRc4 and MRc7?

    MRc7 counts only new wood, and MRc4 counts recycled content, so there is no overlap in the credits. You must choose one credit, and not double-dip. For products with FSC Mix and recycled content claims—including many MDF products and complex assemblies that include MDF—LEED Interpretation #10372 clarifies that project teams have to choose which "environmental attribute" they will use to classify the product, and it (and its dollar value) will either go into an FSC "bucket" or into a recycled-content "bucket." 

    If I have one cut sheet that meets the LEED 2009 requirement to upload 20% of cut sheets by cost, for this credit, is that acceptable?

    Yes, subject to any questions that may come up during a normal LEED review process.

Legend

  • Best Practices
  • Gotcha
  • Action Steps
  • Cost Tip

Schematic Design

Expand All

  • Look at opportunities to use recycled content materials for the project’s potential “big ticket” items.


  • Big-ticket products that often have recycled content include: steel, drywall, insulation, ceiling tiles, concrete, VCT, commercial carpet, and composite substrates. There are more and more products in nearly every category that use recycled content as a way to help LEED projects earn this credit.  


  • The decision to use recycled content material can help guide design decisions, such as using recycled-content steel framing instead of wood framing. However, only letting recycled content drive basic design decisions may be shortsighted and lead to tradeoffs with other credits, not to mention other environmental impact areas. Look for materials that contribute to multiple LEED credits.


  • This credit can often be achieved at no added cost, as there are many products with recycled content that building projects already use. 


  • Use LEED point calculators built into online product catalogs such as those powered by ecoScorecard to streamline data collection and generate submittal documents:

    • Invision Carpet Systems
    • Shaw Contract Group
    • Tandus
    • lees

Design Development

Expand All

  • Begin by creating a baseline materials budget. This is the total amount of money that will be spent on building materials. Use the Materials Calculator from the Documentation Toolkit to compile the baseline material list in a way that facilitates adding information on environmental attributes.


  • Your material budget assumptions and material costs should be consistent across MRc3, MRc4, MRc5, MRc6, and MRc7. The LEED Online credit form helps ensure this automatically. 


  • Adding Division 12 Furniture to your baseline materials budget for this credit is optional, but must be applied consistently across MRc3, MRc4, MRc5, MRc6, and MRc7. Analyze the baseline material budget to see if adding Division 12 furniture works to the project’s advantage. Generally, if the furniture helps contribute to the above MR credits it is in a project’s interest to take credit for it—however, it may help with some while making others more difficult.


  • Choose one of two options in creating a baseline budget—the default budget, or the actual budget (excluding labor). The default budget method gives you a baseline materials budget as 45% of your total budget, while the actual budget gives you a baseline based on what you actually spend.


  • How do you decide whether to use the actual material cost or the default budget as your baseline? Try estimating how your actual material costs compare to the 45% default. The lower you can get the baseline, the easier it is to purchase enough recycled material to reach the credit threshold. For example, a project that is renovating an existing building may have low material and high labor costs, so it might be better to use the actual budget instead of the default approach.


  • The default budget is less time-consuming because the contractor does not have to break out the material and labor costs of items that are not being tracked for LEED credits, allowing the project to focus on tracking only the materials that contribute to LEED credits. You can take the total cost (material plus labor) of all items in the applicable CSI divisions and assume that cost of materials is 45% and labor cost is 55%. However, this option may put the project at a disadvantage in terms of getting full credit for the actual value of materials. 


  • Include in your materials baseline budget, the material cost (excluding labor) of all items that apply under CSI MasterFormat 2004:

    • Divisions 3–10 
    • Section 31.60: Foundations
    • Section 32.10: Paving 
    • Section 32.30: Site Improvements
    • Section 32.90: Planting
    • Division 12: Furnishings is optional
    • Mechanical, electrical, plumbing and equipment costs are excluded.

  • Even if you are using the default budget method, you still have to break out the actual cost (cost excluding labor) of the specific items that you are tracking to contribute toward LEED MR credits.


  • How do you know what amount of recycled content material you need to incorporate in your project? Look at the baseline materials budget. Determine how much you need to spend on recycled content materials to reach the credit thresholds. To earn one point, allocate 10% of your material budget; for two points, allocate 20%. Go through your project’s preliminary budget and identify which items could be purchased with recycled content, and what percentages of recycled content they can contribute. Do these items add up to the amount needed to get one or two points?  


  • Use your estimated budget as a guide throughout the project. Don’t fail to earn this credit because you waited until all the materials were purchased before calculating whether you used enough materials with recycled content to gain the LEED credit. 


  • Research products by looking at product cut sheets and manufacturing data to see if a product contains recycled content.  Often a product will appear to meet the credit requirements, but you'll need to ask for more specific information from the manufacturer—see the Documentation Toolkit for examples of this.


  • A single product or material can contribute to multiple LEED credits. For example, a chair made locally, with urea-formaldehyde-free, recycled, composite wood contributes to MRc4, MRc5, MRc6, and IEQc4.4. Not all credits allow this double-counting. Materials counted here cannot also count towards MRc3 nor MRc7—although separate components within a product can. If a product has both certified wood and recycled content steel, for example, each component can contribute to earning the appropriate credit. Focusing on products and materials with multiple environmental attributes also can limit the overall number of items that must be tracked. 


  • Don’t assume that because an item has recycled content you can count the whole cost of that item towards the credit—the value contributing to the credit equals the percentage of recycled content times the value of the material. Recycled content can be pre-consumer (also known as post-industrial) or post-consumer recycled content. These are valued differently in LEED calculations. Pre-consumer content is worth 50% of its cost value, while post-consumer is worth 100%. See the Documentation Toolkit for a Recycled Content Assembly Calculator. For example, if a piece of plywood costs $100, it has 40% pre- and 15% post-consumer content. How much of the total cost can be counted towards this credit?

     


  • Steel is a special case—all steel is made from recycled materials, and it is the only material for which LEED allows you to claim a default recycled content value (25% post-consumer) without providing any documentation. Some steel has 90% or more recycled content, however, so you’re better off documenting the actual amount if you can try to get documentation from your suppliers showing their post-consumer and pre-consumer recycled content. 


  • Drywall can be specified with synthetic gypsum, which is a byproduct or removing sulfur from the smokestacks of coal-fired power plants, and counts as pre-consumer recycled content. Before using it, however, check to see if it made in your region because the environmental impact of trucking it long distances is likely far greater than any benefit of using it instead of natural gypsum. Either way, the paper facing on drywall is almost always entirely post-consumer recycled.


  • Assemblies


  • When a product is made of multiple components that have different recycling rates, note the following special considerations.


  • The cost value for the LEED calculation is determined by separating each component as a percentage of the total by weight, while accounting for the value of pre- and post-consumer recycled content. See the assembly example below, and a calculator in the Documentation Toolkit.


  • Request that manufacturers provide assembly information broken down by weight. 


  • Using the project’s estimated budget early on to integrate materials with recycled content in the design and specs can help prevent costly change orders during construction. 


  • Instead of tracking recycled content in everything, focus first on “big ticket” items, materials like concrete, structural steel, masonry products and gypsum board to see if you get enough value from them to earn the credit. This approach allows you to Iimit the overall number of items you need to track and document, reducing contractor headaches. If big-ticket items are not enough, target a medium-priced item next, and so on, until you reach your goal.

Construction Documents

Expand All

  • Revisit your baseline materials budget as the design evolves to make sure the numbers remain accurate and that you remain on track to achieve your goal for the credit.


  • Research specific products. Incorporate recycled content product requirements into individual construction specification sections.


  • MasterSpec and the federal Whole Building Design Guide (see Resources) offer guidance and sample specification language on how to incorporate LEED specifications in construction documents.


  • Incorporating the LEED requirements directly on the drawings as well as in the specs is a good way to remind the contractor and subcontractors of the requirements. 


  • Analyze the initial cost budget to know what materials the project can target and incorporate LEED requirement language accordingly into construction specs for those specific materials.  The contractor will appreciate not filling out forms for materials that are not recycled, or that have so little cost value that it is a waste of time. 


  • Whenever possible, designate in the construction specifications that contractors use specific sources you have verified as suppliers of recycled content items. This will help save research time for the contractors and ensure credit compliance.


  • Include submittal requirements within each targeted construction spec section and add general requirements to the Division 1 bid package. Include copies of any submittal documents that the subcontractors and general contractor may need to fill out.

Construction

Expand All

  • Preparation Before Construction Begins


  • The general contractor (GC) should be oriented to all LEED construction-related issues, such as IAQ management, low-emitting materials, environmental materials tracking tools, and construction waste management. 


  • LEED documentation and materials tracking are usually the GC’s responsibility even though specific materials selection may have been already determined by the architect or designer.


  • The GC should hold an orientation meeting with the subcontractors to review the LEED responsibilities related specifically to their trades. This exercise helps to build trust and is crucial for obtaining buy-in from all participants in the process.


  • Give the GC and subcontractors the following tools to help them track materials data for all MR and IEQ credits. (See the Documentation Toolkit for access.)

    • Materials Calculator:  This is a master tracking spreadsheet that the GC can use internally to compile product information received from the subcontractors. The spreadsheet tracks LEED values across multiple LEED MR and IEQ credits.
    • Environmental Materials Reporting Form: This is a material tracking form that helps subcontractors record the environmental values for products they purchase. This can be distributed to each trade subcontractor and submitted to the GC for filing. 
    • Low-Emitting Materials Reporting Form: This is a VOC tracking sheet that helps subcontractors record the low-emitting qualities of the products they purchase and can be distributed to each trade subcontractor and submitted to the GC for filing.
    • Low-Emitting Material Limits: These tables, found with each credit here on LEEDuser, summarize the maximum VOC limits for different types of adhesives, sealants, paints, coatings, composite wood, and flooring products. When subcontractors search for low-emitting products, they should consult these charts.

  • Enabling coordination and communication among the GC, subcontractors and design team early in the process can minimize scheduling delays and pushback from subcontractors.


  • Before construction begins, research additional recycled product material availability, not already researched during the design phase to ensure that the project earns this credit. If product decisions are made after construction begins, there may be less time to carefully review data sheets and much greater risk of using a noncompliant product.


  • During Construction


  • The contractor starts gathering and environmental data and cut sheets from subcontractors for approval. 


  • The GC functions as the overall quality assurance provider for this credit. Responsibilities include conducting weekly reviews of subcontractor product submittals and tracking forms.


  • Review subcontractor product suggestions ahead of time to avoid the purchase of inappropriate materials and eliminate the need for costly change orders.  


  • Streamline documentation and research by taking data gathered from subs via the Environmental Material Reporting Form and transfer it into a master spreadsheet for all the items being tracked for each product across MR and IEQ credits. For example, you may need to ask the millworker for regional information for MRc5, recycled content information for MRc4, and information about adhesives installed onsite for IEQc4.1. If one spreadsheet collects all the data, it can streamline your documentation, associated research, and help with quality control. See the Documentation Toolkit for spreadsheets you can work with. 


  • A master spreadsheet facilitates information collection for subcontractors, giving them a road map of exactly what types of information to collect for each product.  


  • Assign a responsible party to input the subcontractors’ tracking forms into the Materials Calculator (see Documentation Toolkit). A LEED consultant or an administrative assistant in the GC’s office may be the best choice for this role.


  • Breaking out specific materials costs (excluding labor) for construction materials that contribute to LEED credits is a requirement for LEED MR credits. Some subcontractors prefer not to do this because there are always hidden markups in the materials that subcontractors purchase at wholesale. However, you can simply include the product markup when breaking out a product’s material cost from installation and labor costs.


  • Transfer all the data collected in the Materials Calculator spreadsheet (see Documentation Toolkit) to the LEED Online form and upload the product cut sheets. 


  • Only a random 20% sampling of product cut sheets need to be uploaded to LEED Online to document this credit.

Operations & Maintenance

Expand All

  • Keep a list of sustainable materials used on the project so that operations staff can use these products for future renovations.


  • Develop recycled content material procurement recommendations into a purchasing policy. If pursuing LEED-EBOM certification, that would fall under MRp1: Sustainable Purchasing Policy.

  • USGBC

    Excerpted from LEED 2009 for New Construction and Major Renovations

    MR Credit 4: Recycled content

    1–2 Points

    Intent

    To increase demand for building products that incorporate recycled content materials, thereby reducing impacts resulting from extraction and processing of virgin materials.

    Requirements

    Use materials with recycled content1 such that the sum of postconsumer2 recycled content plus 1/2 of the preconsumer3 content constitutes at least 10% or 20%, based on cost, of the total value of the materials in the project. The minimum percentage materials recycled for each point threshold is as follows:

    Recycled Content Points
    10% 1
    20% 2



    The recycled content value of a material assembly is determined by weight. The recycled fraction of the assembly is then multiplied by the cost of assembly to determine the recycled content value.

    Mechanical, electrical and plumbing components, and specialty items such as elevators and equipment cannot be included in all calculations. Include only materials permanently installed in the project. Furniture may be included if it is included consistently in MR Credit 3: Materials Reuse through MR Credit 7: Certified WoodWood from a source that has been determined, through a certification process, to meet stated ecological and other criteria. There are numerous forest certification programs in general use based on several standards, but only the Forest Stewardship Council's standards, which include requirements that the wood be tracked through its chain-of-custody, can be used to qualify wood for a point in the LEED Rating System..

    1 Recycled content is defined in accordance with the International Organization of Standards document, ISO 14021 — Environmental labels and declarations — Self-declared environmental claims (Type II environmental labeling).

    2 Postconsumer material is defined as waste material generated by households or by commercial, industrial and institutional facilities in their role as end-users of the product, which can no longer be used for its intended purpose.

    3 Preconsumer material is defined as material diverted from the waste stream during the manufacturing process. Reutilization of materials (i.e., rework, regrind or scrap generated in a process and capable of being reclaimed within the same process that generated it) is excluded.

    Potential Technologies & Strategies

    Establish a project goal for recycled content materials, and identify material suppliers that can achieve this goal. During construction, ensure that the specified recycled content materials are installed. Consider a range of environmental, economic and performance attributes when selecting products and materials.

Web Tools

BuildingGreen.com

Lists of green, recycled content materials organized by LEED credit and CSI section.

Organizations

Steel Recycling Institute

The Steel Recycling Institute provides defaults for recycled content of steel based on furnace type.


MasterSpec

MasterSpec offers guidance on incorporating LEED requirements into specifications.


Whole Building Design Guide (WBDG) — Federal Green Construction Guide for Specifiers

Support on incorporating LEED requirements into specifications. 

Materials Calculator

Teams can use this tool to track all materials across various MR and IEQ credits. It helps teams develop a roadmap of what information needs to be tracked for different products. It can also be used early on to create the baseline budget and ensure the products that are being used will apply to the various credit thresholds.

Environmental Materials Reporting Form

This is a materials tracking form that helps subcontractors record the environmental values of products they purchase. This can be distributed to each trade subcontractor and submitted to the GC for filing.

Letter to Contractor for MR and IEQ Credits

Use a letter like this sample to orient the contractor to their responsibilities for all MR and IEQ credits. This letter is an introduction that can be customized for the credits your project is pursuing.

Low-Emitting Materials Reporting Form

This is a VOC tracking sheet that helps subcontractors record the low-emitting qualities of the products they purchase and can be distributed to each trade subcontractor and submitted to the GC for filing. Use it specifically for earning low-emitting materials credits, but in conjunction with documentation for MR credits.

Recycled Content Calculator

Use this spreadsheet to determine the value that a given material or assembly contributes to the recycled content calculations for this credit, based on the type of recycled content in the material or assembly, and the percentage by weight of the assembly that contains recycled content.

Recycled Content – Product Cut Sheets

Look to product cut sheets like these for recycled-content information on products you're specifying or considering specifying. Note that while all three of these examples appear to contribute to MRc4, in all cases more information is needed from the manufacturer (see PDF annotations).

Concrete Tracking

Use this form to track your concrete mixes and their recycled content and distance to the manufacturing and extraction sites.

LEED Online Forms: NC-2009 MR

The following links take you to the public, informational versions of the dynamic LEED Online forms for each NC-2009 MR credit. You'll need to fill out the live versions of these forms on LEED Online for each credit you hope to earn.

Version 4 forms (newest):

Version 3 forms:

These links are posted by LEEDuser with USGBC's permission. USGBC has certain usage restrictions for these forms; for more information, visit LEED Online and click "Sample Forms Download."

Construction Submittal

HardhatDocumentation for this credit is part of the Construction Phase submittal.

Recycled Content Specifications

How much recycled content should you look for in key building products? What other sustainability criteria apply? This sample sheet from a project shows how one team set guidelines for different product areas.

561 Comments

0
0
David Brown Charles Brown Glass Co.
Jul 16 2015
LEEDuser Member
4 Thumbs Up

Assemblies

Project Location: United States

In idiot terms could someone please tell me what makes up an "assembly". I am a glazing contractor working on a LEED project. I have two items needing LEED submittals for the MR4 credit. One product consists of steel, aluminum and glass which the LEED consultant said was considered an assembly but then told me to verify if the other item was an assembly and if so submit info as required.The other product consists of aluminum and glass so this would be considered an assembly as well correct.?

1
3
0
Michelle Reott LEED AP BD+C, ID+C, O+M, Managing Principal, Earthly Ideas LLC Jul 16 2015 LEEDuser Expert 8497 Thumbs Up

David - An assembly in LEED terms is "product formulated from multiple materials (e.g., a composite woodComposite wood consists of wood or plant particles or fibers bonded by a synthetic resin or binder. Examples include particleboard, medium-density fiberboard (MDF), plywood, oriented-strand board (OSB), wheatboard, and strawboard. panel) or a product made up of subcomponents (e.g., a window system)." So your other product composed of aluminum and glass is also an assembly. Assemblies are a bit tricky to calculate and it is unfortunate your LEED consultant is not willing to provide you with the details on what they are and how to calculate them. Recycled content value for an assembly is determined by weight. In addition to the post- and/or pre-consumer recycled content for each component, you'll need the weight of each component (steel, glass, and aluminum) as well as the overall weight of the entire assembly. You also need the cost that you are charging to the general contractor for the product.

Check out the Sample Assembly Calculation worksheet in the Recycled Content Calculator under the documentation toolkit for this credit. The percentages in the %Material/component represents of total product are based on their weight. Hope this helps!

2
3
0
David Brown Charles Brown Glass Co. Jul 16 2015 LEEDuser Member 4 Thumbs Up

Thank You - Thank You - Much appreciated!

3
3
0
Jon Clifford LEED-AP BD+C, GREENSQUARE Jul 16 2015 LEEDuser Member 2208 Thumbs Up

David—Michelle is right. Calculating assemblies is tricky. However, figuring out whether you have an assembly is easier. To put it simply, ask yourself, “What gets delivered to the site?”

For example, if a glass railing system consists of steel framing, aluminum trim, and tempered glass infill panels, and if the parts ship separately, coming together only when they are installed onsite, the system is not an assembly. You would report the costs and the recycled percentages of each component separately.

By contrast, a prefabricated window unit would be an assembly. You would calculate the assembly’s composition as Michelle describes, using the weights of its various components, and report one cost for the whole shebang.

In either case, the costs that you report should include taxes, shipping, and all other expenses incurred prior to delivery (such as off-site fabrication costs). Leave out costs incurred onsite (such as installation equipment & labor).

Are those terms idiot enough?

Post a Reply
0
0
Mike Stopka Director of Sustainability Solomon Cordwell Buenz
Jul 09 2015
LEEDuser Member
373 Thumbs Up

Getting total material cost for the project

Hello

I am having a lot of trouble getting a total material cost from the contractor. Is there any good/easy/quick strategy to get this number? How is this typically calculated by the contractor?

1
4
0
Michelle Reott LEED AP BD+C, ID+C, O+M, Managing Principal, Earthly Ideas LLC Jul 09 2015 LEEDuser Expert 8497 Thumbs Up

Mike - Are you referring to the Total Materials Cost in the BDC MR Calculator? If so, it is either 45% times the total construction costs for the LEED Project (CSI MasterFormat 2004 Divisions 3-10, 31.60.00, 32.10.00, 32.30.00, and 32.90.00 only) or the actual cost of all materials (excluding labor and equipment) within those same CSI Divisions/Sections.

The easiest way to get Total Materials Cost is to get the contractor to provide you with total construction costs for the project as outlined above. (That really shouldn't be too hard for the contractor to provide.) You can then enter that value into the BDC MR Calculator on worksheet A. Instructions into cell F13. The calculator will multiply it by 45% to arrive at the Total Materials Cost.

For additional information, see Calculating Materials Costs to Achieve MR Credits in the Materials and Resources Overview or the Calculations section in MRc3-6 in the LEED Reference Guide.

2
4
0
Jennifer Frey Project Manager, Sellen Sustainability Jul 09 2015 LEEDuser Member 576 Thumbs Up

I have experienced this a few times. Encourage the contractor to just provide summary numbers and let them know that they must exclude their Division 1 costs so no one is going to see their General Condition costs or how they got to specific values. If they can just summarize the divisions Michelle listed above, it should put them at ease that you are not going to have or publish sensitive pricing information.

If they still resist/do not respond, you can also try requesting from the client a copy of the latest construction estimate, which the contractor must have provided the owner. Then you can follow Michelle's direction above. Good luck!

3
4
0
Mike Stopka Director of Sustainability, Solomon Cordwell Buenz Jul 09 2015 LEEDuser Member 373 Thumbs Up

yes Michelle, total material costs in BDC MR Calculators.

Thanks for the responses.

4
4
0
Jon Clifford LEED-AP BD+C, GREENSQUARE Jul 11 2015 LEEDuser Member 2208 Thumbs Up

Mike—If your contractors haven’t purchased everything yet, they may not be certain yet what their total costs will be. Remember that project costs can be a moving target. Preconstruction estimates may help with goal setting, but these early projections often get fuzzy around the edges.

However, on most US projects, once the contract has been awarded, the Owner & Contractor agree to contract costs established in a Schedule of Values (SoV) submitted by the Contractor. If the SoV itemizes costs by Spec Section, breaking out the total construction cost for the “Default” calculation can be easy. Even better, if the SoV breaks out labor from materials, projecting Actual Material Costs (at least at the beginning of work) may be straightforward.

On the other hand, once a project is underway, Change Orders, unforeseen conditions, market fluctuations, etc. can modify these agreed costs. As a result, the real, final costs may be unknowable until all work is complete.

To keep on top of changes, I have required contractors to submit periodic summaries reporting their spending as the work progresses. [As Jennifer & Michelle point out, this can be a general, Division-by-Division breakdown.] By the end of the project, we can pin down the final, actual totals.

If Contractors assemble these “running tabs” monthly, as they pay their subs & suppliers, and if they submit them to the Owner with their monthly Pay Applications, the cost reports become just another part of their billing ritual, and the extra bookkeeping is minimal.

Of course, the best way to make this happen is to spell out the requirements in the Contract Documents. Project billing and accounting procedures usually are specified in Division 01 of the Specs, under “Payment Procedures,” and in individual Spec Sections, under “Measurement and Payment.” Work with your project’s Owner, contract administrators, and Construction Managers (the people who hold the purse strings), and with project Specifiers, to integrate LEED cost reporting into the project’s billing/payment procedures.

Post a Reply
0
0
Haley Duncan Project Manager Silver Oak Cellars
Jun 04 2015
LEEDuser Member
32 Thumbs Up

Materials Tracking

Project Location: United States

Hi, regardless of whether we use the default budget or actual materials cost, must we track every item that falls under the applicable divisions? Or can we only track the items that comply w/ the reuse/regional/recycled/rapidly renewableTerm describing a natural material that is grown and harvested on a relatively short-rotation cycle (defined by the LEED rating system to be ten years or less)./certified woodWood from a source that has been determined, through a certification process, to meet stated ecological and other criteria. There are numerous forest certification programs in general use based on several standards, but only the Forest Stewardship Council's standards, which include requirements that the wood be tracked through its chain-of-custody, can be used to qualify wood for a point in the LEED Rating System. credits?

1
3
0
Michelle Reott LEED AP BD+C, ID+C, O+M, Managing Principal, Earthly Ideas LLC Jun 04 2015 LEEDuser Expert 8497 Thumbs Up

Haley - To answer your first question - no. The second question's answer is yes.

For LEED BD+C (as compared to LEED ID+C), you only have to track details (cost of product, LEED material attribute) for items that comply with the reuse/recycled/regional/rapidly renewableTerm describing a natural material that is grown and harvested on a relatively short-rotation cycle (defined by the LEED rating system to be ten years or less)./certified woodWood from a source that has been determined, through a certification process, to meet stated ecological and other criteria. There are numerous forest certification programs in general use based on several standards, but only the Forest Stewardship Council's standards, which include requirements that the wood be tracked through its chain-of-custody, can be used to qualify wood for a point in the LEED Rating System. credits.

2
3
0
Susan Walter Sr Project Architect, Wilmot/Sanz Jun 05 2015 LEEDuser Expert 17496 Thumbs Up

While you don't have to track all the items, you may want to aim for that anyway. We find it easier to have the contractor get in the groove of recording materials and tracking them. From a process point of view, it is easier if all submittals are treated the same. Just a thought. If you have a larger project, this may be easier and less likely something you need will get overlooked.

3
3
0
Jon Clifford LEED-AP BD+C, GREENSQUARE Jun 05 2015 LEEDuser Member 2208 Thumbs Up

Susan—I am not sure I agree about larger projects. I have worked on such projects that have attempted this approach—requiring MR data for every single Div03-10/31/32 product. It only made a complex project more complicated & costly.

When we make dozens of contractors gather data from hundreds of subcontractors for thousands of products, everyone, including construction managers, architects, and LEED-APs, expends enormous amounts of time, money, & resources generating, transmitting, & evaluating data in mountains of paperwork and servers full of electrons.

LEED-APs can preserve these resources, the goodwill of their Teams, and their own sanity by doing their homework up-front. By identifying the big-dollar, heavy-hitter products during design, they can target construction submittal requirements toward these items. This can allow the LEED-AP to work more closely with the particular parties responsible for the most important submittals. During the busy construction phase, this tactic can also free up contractors and others to focus on IAQIndoor air quality: The quality and attributes of indoor air affecting the health and comfort building occupants. IAQ encompasses available fresh air, contaminant levels, acoustics and noise levels, lighting quality, and other factors., VOCsA volatile organic compounds (VOCs) is a carbon compound that vaporizes (becomes a gas) at normal room temperatures. VOCs contribute to air pollution directly and through atmospheric photochemical reactions (excluding carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, carbonic acid, metallic carbides and carbonates, and ammonium carbonate) to produce secondary air pollutants, principally ozone and peroxyacetyl nitrate., Commissioning, and the big-picture activities critical to a successful LEED project.

The “Checklist” tab at the top of this page offers LEEDuser members numerous tips on how to analyze material budgets and research materials to hone down a project’s data tracking needs while still meeting credit goals.

Post a Reply
0
0
Rezkar Abdulmajeed Architect/LEED AP 7D ASSOCIATES
May 03 2015
Guest
111 Thumbs Up

Manufacturer Declaration Letter

Project Location: Canada

We completed the design of our project in 2013 and start construction in 2014. Some of the Declaration letters we received from the Manufacture (To Whom it may Concern) are dated before the start of our project. Is this acceptable or do I have to ask the contractor to provide an updated one.

Thanks

1
1
0
Michelle Reott LEED AP BD+C, ID+C, O+M, Managing Principal, Earthly Ideas LLC May 04 2015 LEEDuser Expert 8497 Thumbs Up

Rezkar - I've never had a review team question the dates on my backup documentation. That said, I request recent information (~less than 3 years old) from manufacturers as part of my quality control process.

Three years is my own rule of thumb but it might be helpful to you; however, it is not set in stone. For instance, for steel I look at the mill certificates and ensure the backup from the manufacturers corresponds to the date to the steel was procured.

Post a Reply
0
0
Usama Eita
Apr 27 2015
Guest
474 Thumbs Up

preconsumer recycled content in steel

How steel industries produce a waste that considered as a pre-consumer? Any scrap/waste comes out from steel industries it will need to re-melt it again in the same manner of the first process even this waste transferred to a another factory. Even the slag too. As ISO 14021 has defined preconsumer recycled content ( …… Excluded are rework, regrind, or scrap materials capable of being reclaimed within the same process that generated them.
Please need to clarify this point it might be I understood in wrong way.

1
2
0
Jon Clifford LEED-AP BD+C, GREENSQUARE Apr 27 2015 LEEDuser Member 2208 Thumbs Up

Usuma—You are correct. The definition of pre-consumer in ISO-14021 does not include materials reclaimed during the same process that generated them. Therefore, a steel mill that collects and reuses scrap within its own mill cannot call that material “recycled.”

However, a manufacturer that buys steel to make a product might have leftover material that it sells back to a steel mill. This does qualify as “pre-consumer recycled.” This is common because steel often changes hands several times before it reaches the market.

Example: A steel mill rolls molten steel into steel plates. A sheet steel manufacturer buys the plates and rolls them further into coils of sheet steel. Finally, a fabricator buys the coils, cuts the sheet into panels, punches them full of holes, and uses them to make perforated acoustical panels. If a steel mill buys any of the scrap produced by the sheet manufacturer or the panel fabricator, that scrap qualifies as “pre-consumer.”

2
2
0
Usama Eita Apr 28 2015 Guest 474 Thumbs Up

Jon, many thanks for your useful and quick reply.

Post a Reply
0
0
Amy Blizzard LEED Engineer Paramount Builders
Apr 20 2015
LEEDuser Member
5 Thumbs Up

calculating shipping costs for multiple items

Project Location: Samoa

I can't find how to factor in shipping for multiple items. For example, under the MRc4 - I have four items from one company, so the four will be shipped together. Do I divide shipping by 4 and add the cost to each product, and then factor pre/post consumer value? Or am I missing something?

Thanks!

1
2
0
Michelle Reott LEED AP BD+C, ID+C, O+M, Managing Principal, Earthly Ideas LLC Apr 21 2015 LEEDuser Expert 8497 Thumbs Up

Amy - Your idea to divide the shipping among the 4 products and then calculate the pre/post consumer recycled content value is sound. This methodology reflects that you are trying to accurately represent each qualifying product's cost as delivered to the jobsite.

2
2
0
Amy Blizzard LEED Engineer, Paramount Builders Apr 23 2015 LEEDuser Member 5 Thumbs Up

Thanks for the quick reply!

Post a Reply
0
0
Michele Helou Principal Sage Design & Consulting
Apr 17 2015
LEEDuser Member
956 Thumbs Up

recovered wood fiber

Project Location: United States

I have two products - Uniboard Nugreen Particleboard and Temple Inland Ultrastock free MDFMedium-density fiberboard (MDF): Panel product used in cabinets and furniture; generally made from wood fiber glued together with binder; similar to particleboard, but with finer texture, offering more precise finishing. Most MDF is made with formaldehyde-emitting urea-formaldehyde binder. which both claim to contain 100% recycled/recovered fiber on a dry weight basis. But just because the panels contain 100% recovered fiber does not make them 100% pre-consumer content correct? There are the weights of the glues and other materials. So do we need per weight % of all products or can we guess it's at least 90%?

1
2
0
Jon Clifford LEED-AP BD+C, GREENSQUARE Apr 17 2015 LEEDuser Member 2208 Thumbs Up

Michele—To count a product toward MRc4, the manufacturer must report specific percentages of post- & pre-consumer recycled content for the entire assembly. If they cannot or will not report it this way, you cannot enter a percentage into the MR calculator.
You are correct that, by reporting only the recycled/recovered content of the fiber, these manufacturers have ignored the glues & resins that bind the fibers together.
Beyond that, the use of both terms “recycled” & “recovered” suggests the use some “internally recovered” fiber, which does not count toward MRc4. (ISO-14021-1999 definition of “pre-consumer material” explicitly excludes “reutilization of materials such as rework, regrind or scrap generated in a process and capable of being reclaimed within the same process that generated it.”)
When I have contacted particleboard manufacturers for specific percentages, they have said that they do not track fiber reclaimed within their mills separately from recycled material obtained from outside sources.

2
2
0
Michelle Reott LEED AP BD+C, ID+C, O+M, Managing Principal, Earthly Ideas LLC Apr 20 2015 LEEDuser Expert 8497 Thumbs Up

Michele - Jon has provided you solid advice but I wanted to add a couple of things from Proven Provider. "Recovered" as a claim for recycled content raises a red flag to the review team. (As Jon notes above recycled and recovered are not synonymous. You'll need manufacturer backup that the material is actually recycled per the LEED definition.)

Any claim of 100% recycled for a composite woodComposite wood consists of wood or plant particles or fibers bonded by a synthetic resin or binder. Examples include particleboard, medium-density fiberboard (MDF), plywood, oriented-strand board (OSB), wheatboard, and strawboard. product also raises a red flag due to the resin content, which is typically not recycled. As Jon notes, you need details from the manufacturer on the breakdown between resin and wood.

Post a Reply
0
0
Dw Barnes
Apr 06 2015
Guest
2 Thumbs Up

Requirements for recycle concrete

Project Location: Canada

Is there a certain requirement/specification to use concrete that has been crushed from other sites as a material for another site? If so,where would it be and under what item would be it classified?

1
1
0
Michelle Reott LEED AP BD+C, ID+C, O+M, Managing Principal, Earthly Ideas LLC Apr 10 2015 LEEDuser Expert 8497 Thumbs Up

DW - I am not quite sure I understand your questions. There is no requirement to document the use of remanufactured concrete for the MR credits but you can include it for MRc4 and MRc5 (assuming the other site was within 500-miles of your site). Please review posts on this forum related to concrete and if your question is not answered, please revise and re-post it. Regarding what item it would be classified under, it depends on how the concrete is being used on your site.

Tips: Go to the bottom of this page and click "Single-page view." Then use your browser's search feature to look for "concrete" on this page. Here is one recent post on the topic: http://www.leeduser.com/credit/NC-2009/MRc4?page=0#comment-55156.

Post a Reply
0
0
Erika Duran Sustainability Consultant Dagher Engineering
Mar 24 2015
LEEDuser Member
1433 Thumbs Up

Items that are used for either MRc4 or MRc3

Project Location: United States

Dear All,

I am unclear about something. If I have items that would qualify for MRc3 but we are not pursuing that credit, is it acceptable to count them towards MRc4?

1
3
0
Michelle Reott LEED AP BD+C, ID+C, O+M, Managing Principal, Earthly Ideas LLC Mar 25 2015 LEEDuser Expert 8497 Thumbs Up

Erika - The short answer is no. You can only count recycled materials for MRc4. Materials that would have qualified for MRc3 (are reused) will not also qualify for MRc4. Maybe you were thinking that salvaged materials from off-site can be applied for MRc5, if they are regional. As can on-site salvaged materials.

2
3
0
Jon Clifford LEED-AP BD+C, GREENSQUARE Mar 25 2015 LEEDuser Member 2208 Thumbs Up

This common misconception about MRc3 & MRc4 may also stem in part from the fact that, if a project cannot reach thresholds for Reuse Credits MRc1 or MRc3, It CAN count reused material from the jobsite as diverted construction waste under MRc2. Michelle & Tristan made relevant posts in the MRc2 forum: http://www.leeduser.com/comment/redirect/54905 & http://www.leeduser.com/comment/redirect/2548.

3
3
0
Erika Duran Sustainability Consultant, Dagher Engineering Mar 30 2015 LEEDuser Member 1433 Thumbs Up

Thank you. The confusing part to me was due to the MRc3 "Bird's Eye View" stating: "There may be instances where a product is processed in such a way that it could be considered as under either attribute, but if that's the case you should still choose one; these credits are not meant to overlap."

I focused on the credits not overlapping and was thinking since the credit is not being pursued then, if there was a choice we could account for these materials in MRc4.

Post a Reply
0
0
Caroline Hedin Architect studio point253
Mar 04 2015
LEEDuser Member
1236 Thumbs Up

Packaging?

Project Location: United States

Here's one I haven't seen and would love for people to weigh in on. A manufacturer of, let's say paint, has provided recycled content information but it's for the buckets their product comes in. My assumption is this then won't count because it's not permanently installed. But, it IS part of the cost of the material. So would you include this on your spreadsheet or not? I'm leaning towards not.

1
1
0
Jon Clifford LEED-AP BD+C, GREENSQUARE Mar 04 2015 LEEDuser Member 2208 Thumbs Up

Your instincts are correct. Products and packaging are apples and oranges.
ISO-14021 requires “The percentage recycled content for products and packaging shall be separately stated and shall not be aggregated.”
The calculation and documentation instructions in the Reference Guide call for tracking the recycled content of products (making no mention of packaging).
As a practical matter, design teams can specify products, but have little control over how a product is packaged or shipped. Also, only a few manufacturers include packaging data in their environmental data, so you could scarcely get a balanced measure of packaging’s impact.
The broader scope of LEEDv4 will give us the tools to measure a wider range of environmentally responsible practices.

Post a Reply
0
0
Magda Aghababyan CEO Co-Energi (Pvt) Ltd.
Feb 20 2015
LEEDuser Member
717 Thumbs Up

Question about cut sheets

My project uses lot of steel and that is a very large portion of the total material budget. The supplier has not provided cut sheets to confirm the recycled content of steel.

My other material items with recycled content (to which I have cut sheets) does not reach the 20% by cost threshold. Do you think since 25% default recycled content is a conservative value, LEED would still accept it without cut sheets for 20% of the material cost?

1
1
0
Michelle Reott LEED AP BD+C, ID+C, O+M, Managing Principal, Earthly Ideas LLC Feb 20 2015 LEEDuser Expert 8497 Thumbs Up

Magda - That is a good question and a situation I have not run into before. If any other LEEDusers have, please chime in.

Here's my suggestion: Instead of not providing anything, I would backup the cost of the steel with some documentation from the contractor and then provide the Reference Guide stating the default 25% post-consumerWaste generated by end users (households or commercial, industrial and institutional facilities) of a product no longer able to be used for its intended purpose that is recycled into raw material for a new product. waste value.

Post a Reply
0
0
Brian Harris Principal TcaArchitecture Planning
Feb 17 2015
LEEDuser Member
103 Thumbs Up

Excel spreadsheets

Project Location: United States

How does one "Unprotect" protected cells in the Materials and Resources Calculator and Low-Emitting Materials Calculator excel spreadsheets provided through LEEDonline? There is a password request when I try to edit certain cells in these documents.

Thanks,
Myles

1
5
0
Michelle Reott LEED AP BD+C, ID+C, O+M, Managing Principal, Earthly Ideas LLC Feb 17 2015 LEEDuser Expert 8497 Thumbs Up

Myles - I am not sure why you would need to edit protected cells within the BDC MR Calculator provided for MRc3-7. I've never had to. Frankly I try to minimize unnecessary edits (font or fill changes, etc.) to the BDC MR Calculator to avoid any appearance of modification (tampering).

I am not aware of a spreadsheet for IEQc4 credits.

2
5
0
Brian Harris Principal, TcaArchitecture Planning Feb 17 2015 LEEDuser Member 103 Thumbs Up

Michelle - I must be missing something. The forms for MRc4-7 have instructions to download, complete, and upload the MR Calculator. When I try to input the requested information into the spreadsheet (value of recycled content, e.g.) a notice comes up telling me to Unprotect the sheet. When I try to do this, a password is requested.

Myles

3
5
0
Brian Harris Principal, TcaArchitecture Planning Feb 17 2015 LEEDuser Member 103 Thumbs Up

Never mind, Michelle. I figured out what i need to do.

Thank you!

4
5
0
Ashley Johnson Senior Project Engineer, DPR Construction Apr 21 2015 Guest

So what was the fix? I need to go back and insert rows in my massive spreadsheet but I cannot because of the protected sheet! Please advise...

5
5
0
Michelle Reott LEED AP BD+C, ID+C, O+M, Managing Principal, Earthly Ideas LLC Apr 21 2015 LEEDuser Expert 8497 Thumbs Up

Ashley - I think your question is directed to Brian and he may not be monitoring this forum any longer. I am not aware of the B. Inputs worksheet being protected in the BDC MR Calculator. You can add lines at the bottom by clicking the Add Material button or copy or insert lines elsewhere by copying and pasting a row.

After we talked, I learned you were using the HC BDC Calculator from 2013 and it indeed does not let you add lines except by using the Add Material button, which puts the new line at the bottom. That is frustrating but I think you have a solution.

Post a Reply
0
0
Erika Duran Sustainability Consultant Dagher Engineering
Jan 23 2015
LEEDuser Member
1433 Thumbs Up

Do I include plumbing fixtures in the materials scope

Hi I know accessories are included but are actual plumbing fixtures included in these calcs? They are not with Divs 3-10

1
2
0
Michelle Reott LEED AP BD+C, ID+C, O+M, Managing Principal, Earthly Ideas LLC Jan 23 2015 LEEDuser Expert 8497 Thumbs Up

Erika - You answered your own question - since plumbing fixtures are not specified in the Divisions outlined for the MR credits (Divisions 03-10 and the required sections in 31 and 32), they are NOT included in the calculations. In addition, the credit requirements specifically say: "Mechanical, electrical and plumbing components, and specialty items such as elevators and equipment cannot be included in all calculations."

2
2
0
Erika Duran Sustainability Consultant, Dagher Engineering Jan 23 2015 LEEDuser Member 1433 Thumbs Up

Thank ya, thank ya

Post a Reply
0
0
Elena EP
Jan 15 2015
Guest
7 Thumbs Up

Recycled Content for differnet plants from the same manufacturer

Hypothetically, if Plant 1 has 15% pre-consumer recycle, Plant 2 has 25% and Plant 3 has 35%. Can an average be used of 25% to meet the credit since it is challenging to track where specifically the product came from? thanks!
Elena

1
5
0
Keith Lindemulder Environmental Business Development- LEED AP BD&C, Nucor Jan 16 2015 LEEDuser Member 1598 Thumbs Up

Elena, unfortunately that will not be acceoted. There is a credit interpretation that prevents using s national (or companywdie) average for a product. The recycled content data must be plant and product specific. Sorry I don't have the credit interpretation number handy.

2
5
0
Renee Shirey Jan 16 2015 LEEDuser Member 3301 Thumbs Up

This is info from the FAQ section above:

The manufacturer can't give me product-specific recycled content data, but they say that they fall within the national industry average. Can I use that?

No. Per LEED InterpretationLEED Interpretations are official answers to technical inquiries about implementing LEED on a project. They help people understand how their projects can meet LEED requirements and provide clarity on existing options. LEED Interpretations are to be used by any project certifying under an applicable rating system. All project teams are required to adhere to all LEED Interpretations posted before their registration date. This also applies to other addenda. Adherence to rulings posted after a project registers is optional, but strongly encouraged. LEED Interpretations are published in a searchable database at usgbc.org. #10246, recycled content claims must be specific to installed product. Average regional and national claims do not meet the credit requirements.

This Interpretation has been misinterpreted, however, to mean that recycled content figures must come from specific plants. That is not what USGBC intended. It is allowable to use a company- and product-specific national average, as long as the company has performed the necessary tracking to assure that that average is accurate at the product SKU level.

3
5
0
Keith Lindemulder Environmental Business Development- LEED AP BD&C, Nucor Jan 16 2015 LEEDuser Member 1598 Thumbs Up

Renee, then the interpretation is still being confused. We have some of the most specific documentation in the market and we routinely have to provide plant specific information.

What happens is the LEED AP would grab our general statement on our recycled content from our website and submit it as documentation. Soon after the review will ask for plant specific, product specific, project specific verification. I which we reply with our detailed project specific letter. The primary reason for rejection initially from the reviewer is the rolled up national average for our company.

If you are able to use a company wide average I'd like to know how.

4
5
0
Renee Shirey Jan 16 2015 LEEDuser Member 3301 Thumbs Up

Keith, I am not sure what the LEED APs have submitted, or how they framed it, but I have been able to successfully use the Nucor corporate letter for recycling content without the plant being identified. However, it may be because the material had the same recycling content from all the plants (rebar from the bar Mill Group).

If the Nucor corporate letter added a corporate average below each Product Group ( such as total scrap steel/total alloy/post-consumerWaste generated by end users (households or commercial, industrial and institutional facilities) of a product no longer able to be used for its intended purpose that is recycled into raw material for a new product./pre-consumer for the Sheet Mill Group), then the LEED AP can claim that rate and the reviewer should accept it. Without confirmation from the manufacturer on which plant sourced the product, the LEED AP is forced to use the lowest recycle rate since there is no proof that it came from a different plant, and no way to calculate the corporate average for the Sheet Mill Group. Based upon the current documentation form Nucor, we have no way of knowing if one plant produces significantly more product than another - which would drastically change the corporate average since each plant has a significantly different recycle rate.

Even with this average documented in place, you might still get some requests for a letter if the material supposedly came from a plant with a really high recycle rate (such as Sheet Mill Group in Crawfordsville IN) vs. whatever the corporate average would be.

Where the plant location really becomes essential is if they are going for regional material credit too - they absolutely need to know where that recycled material came from if they want to claim it as regionally sourced and want to submit the info as backup. I tend to submit your info as backup for recycling content, but then use concrete and masonry products for regional material backup, since a lot of those materials can easily be regionally sourced and documented as such where my projects are located.

I will say that steel can be one of the more difficult materials to document, if the right info isn't presented in the "right" way. I hope this helps. Sorry for the novel!

5
5
0
Renee Shirey Jan 16 2015 LEEDuser Member 3301 Thumbs Up

Elena, Unless the manufacturer can either 1) provide a letter identifying the specific plant for the product, or 2) provide a letter identifying the corporate average for all three plants for the specific product, you will have to 3) use the lowest recycle rating.

You cannot average the three plants recycle rates together because you don't know the percentage of the product that comes from each plant. One plant may product 75% of the product, another one 20% and the last one only 5%. This would definitely alter the corporate average, depending on which plant produces the most product.

Post a Reply
0
0
Robert East
Dec 18 2014
Guest
9 Thumbs Up

Hot-Rolled Structural Steel - MRc4 Products

I am working as part of a Q.A. team at an Integrated Steel Complex in the Middle East which operates 3 core manufacturing plants; 1. Direct Reduction Plant producing Direct Reduced Iron (DRI); 2. Melt Shop, with steel making process using EAF and CCM producing steel billets; 3. Heavy Section hot-rolling mill producing structural steel beams (H-beam, I-beam and Angles). We have been asked by some of our customers to issue a letter to confirm that our products (structural steel sections) contain recycled content and contributes to LEED NC v3 Credit MRc4; Recycled Content (Post-ConsumerWaste generated by end users (households or commercial, industrial and institutional facilities) of a product no longer able to be used for its intended purpose that is recycled into raw material for a new product. and Pre-Consumer).

Can this letter be a self-declaration? or does this have to be certified by LEED? Appreciate if anyone can assist in this regard with how we may go about the process. Thanks in advance.

1
4
0
Keith Lindemulder Environmental Business Development- LEED AP BD&C, Nucor Dec 18 2014 LEEDuser Member 1598 Thumbs Up

The letter should be provided by the structural steel manufacturer on their letterhead. Alternatively you can use the LEED V2009 default rate of 25% recycled content for steel products.

One additional thought Is that it's doubtful that all the steel came from the same location and/or same process. That means you need a letter from each mill that various products were sourced.

2
4
0
Michelle Reott LEED AP BD+C, ID+C, O+M, Managing Principal, Earthly Ideas LLC Dec 19 2014 LEEDuser Expert 8497 Thumbs Up

Keith - Thanks so much for monitoring and contributing to this forum!! Your response is spot on. I just wanted to note that the default recycled content value for steel is 25% post-consumerWaste generated by end users (households or commercial, industrial and institutional facilities) of a product no longer able to be used for its intended purpose that is recycled into raw material for a new product. waste. While this is definitely available for them to use, I'm sure the team is anticipating more recycled content benefit (verified, actual recycled content per material type as you indicate) from the steel if at all possible.

3
4
0
Jon Clifford LEED-AP BD+C, GREENSQUARE Dec 20 2014 LEEDuser Member 2208 Thumbs Up

Robert—LEED does not certify environmental claims. Make your recycled content claims in accordance with the International Organization of Standards document, ISO 14021 — Environmental Labels and Declarations – Self-Declared Environmental Claims (Type II Environmental Labeling).

Recognizing that material sources & composition vary over time, this standard allows manufacturers to base their claims on averages (typically annual averages).

Your complex appears to participate in the entire process of structural steel manufacture, from ore to beam. Therefore, your metallurgists should have record of the formulations and all the inputs into the process. Using this data, they should be able to calculate and report post- & pre-consumer recycled percentages as outlined in the standard. As Keith points out, you can report the claim on manufacturer’s letterhead or similar document.

[NOTE: Using the same dataset, your complex may also be able to compile extraction and reclamation source data for LEED Regional Materials Credit MRc5.]

4
4
0
Tom Dietsche LEED Project Manager, Lilker EMO Energy Solutions Dec 22 2014 LEEDuser Member 293 Thumbs Up

Robert, FYI in case you don't have that ISO standard on hand, the definitions provided in the credit requirements are from this standard:

"Postconsumer material is defined as waste material generated by households or by commercial, industrial and institutional facilities in their role as end-users of the product, which can no longer be used for its intended purpose.

Preconsumer material is defined as material diverted from the waste stream during the manufacturing process. Reutilization of materials (i.e., rework, regrind or scrap generated in a process and capable of being reclaimed within the same process that generated it) is excluded. "

Post a Reply
0
0
Hrvoje Kvasnicka
Dec 12 2014
LEEDuser Member
106 Thumbs Up

Crushed concrete

Project Location: Croatia

We will be using crushed concrete from an exiting building on site for subbase for access road. I understand this cannot be used for MRc3 Material Reuse, but rather for MRc4. The question is how do we price it and how much percent is it recycled and if it is post- or pre-consumer? Also can it be counted towards MRc2 Waste Management and MRc5 Regional Materials? Many thanks in advance

1
5
0
Michelle Reott LEED AP BD+C, ID+C, O+M, Managing Principal, Earthly Ideas LLC Dec 12 2014 LEEDuser Expert 8497 Thumbs Up

Hrvoje - The reason for counting it under MRc4 instead of MRc3 is as follows: because the material is being processed into a new material (from concrete to subbase) - instead of being used in its original form, which is what MRc3 covers. To get a price you need your general contractor via the appropriate subcontractor to price what new subbase would have cost for your access road. This product is 100% recycled and it is consider post-consumerWaste generated by end users (households or commercial, industrial and institutional facilities) of a product no longer able to be used for its intended purpose that is recycled into raw material for a new product. (Waste generated by end users (households or commercial, industrial and institutional facilities) of a product no longer able to be used for its intended purpose that is recycled into raw material for a new product.). Note: It is not from an industrial process, which would make it pre-consumer. You can make it also 100% regional for MRc5. Please read the LEED Reference Guide Section on Recycled Materials that was added by this Reference Guide Correction - ID #100000379 - http://www.usgbc.org/leed-interpretations?keys=100000379. And you can count the material’s weight or volume as diverted under MRc2.

If you don’t have it already, be sure to check out LEEDuser’s LEED 2009: The Missing Manual published by BuildingGreen, Inc. - http://www.leeduser.com/missing-manual. It is free to members and check out page 63 - “We are demolishing an existing building, crushing the concrete and stone, and using it as fill onsite. Does this count under MRc3?”

2
5
0
Tom Dietsche LEED Project Manager, Lilker EMO Energy Solutions Dec 12 2014 LEEDuser Member 293 Thumbs Up

Right on. It's a great strategy for contributing to sustainability and LEED points AND cost savings. This was done on a project I worked on and we estimated it saved $200,000! I advocate for this strategy on any project that involves concrete demolition.

3
5
0
Hrvoje Kvasnicka Dec 15 2014 LEEDuser Member 106 Thumbs Up

Michelle, Tom - Thanks a lot for your help!

4
5
0
EBRU UNVER LEED AP BD+C Jan 30 2015 LEEDuser Member 211 Thumbs Up

Hi everyone,
We re facing a very similar situation with out site , in which we have a concrete parking lot and seperate concrete areas.
I ve understood that the crushed concrete is considered %100 recycled. but would like to know what the pre-consumer recycling percentages can be on this material.
Thank you!

5
5
0
Michelle Reott LEED AP BD+C, ID+C, O+M, Managing Principal, Earthly Ideas LLC Jan 30 2015 LEEDuser Expert 8497 Thumbs Up

Ebru - As noted in my post on 12/12/14 above(http://www.leeduser.com/credit/NC-2009/MRc4?page=0#comment-55167), reprocessed concrete is 100% post-consumerWaste generated by end users (households or commercial, industrial and institutional facilities) of a product no longer able to be used for its intended purpose that is recycled into raw material for a new product. recycled content.

Post a Reply
0
0
Marcio Alberto Casado Pereira
Oct 13 2014
Guest
4254 Thumbs Up

Actual Material Cost vs. Material Cost: what's the difference?

Project Location: Brazil

We received a review comment regarding credits MRc4 and MRc5 of a stadium we are working on in Brazil.

The review team claims that "The Actual Materials Cost of Divisions 3-10,31 and 32 is equivalente to the costs of the materials listed within the calculator. It is inconsistent with industry norms for the materials listed to be a complete list of all material used within the LEED Project. Therefore, it is unclear that the Actual Materials Cost include the costs of all materials associated with this LEED Project. Actual Materials Cost must include the cost of all materials that are part of any specifications within Divisions 3-10, 31, 32 and 12".

We declared U$53.529.626,54 as both Actual Materials Cost (tab A.Instructions) and Materials Cost (tab B.Inputs). This figure includes tax and transportation of all materials within elegible CSI divisions. We have always interpreted it like that and we have certified projects that achieved MRc4 and MRc5 where we put the same dollar amount for Actual Cost and Materials cost. The only field where we put a diferente dollar value is for the total construction cost in PIf2, which for this Project was U$206.700.000,00.

Can anybody please define these two concepts (Actual Material Cost vs. Material Cost) and clarify the difference?

Thanks!

1
20
0
Jon Clifford LEED-AP BD+C, GREENSQUARE Oct 19 2014 LEEDuser Member 2208 Thumbs Up

Marcio – Your definition for “Material Cost” above is correct. However, the reviewers’ comment appears to question your method of calculating the total “Actual Material Costs” entered into Tab A of the MR Calculator (basing it on the total from Tab B).

Indeed, if Tab B individually itemizes the actual cost of EVERY SINGLE PRODUCT used on your project, the spreadsheet must include hundreds, if not thousands, of entries. Topping the list would be a number of high-cost, high-ticket items that contribute significantly to MR Credits. Below them, pages and pages of lesser entries for minor components would show negligible credit impact or none at all. Compiling such a detailed tabulation would have demanded an epic effort from your project’s contractors and administrators—detail far beyond what is required under normal construction accounting practices.

When teams that I have worked with have attempted this approach, the paperwork quickly overwhelms them, costs for minor items fall through the cracks, and the “Total” of Actual Material Cost comes up short. The resulting omissions tend to skew MRc4 & MRc5 percentages upwards, undermining the credibility of the calculations.

The reviewers appear to be asking you to check that your figures are complete and to justify the reported total or revise the total to include any omissions. Since every major project includes procedures to document and manage payments to contractors, you may need to compare notes with your contractors & construction managers to confirm your reported costs. If you coordinated cost reporting with contractors & construction managers during construction, your work may already be complete.

2
20
0
Michelle Reott LEED AP BD+C, ID+C, O+M, Managing Principal, Earthly Ideas LLC Oct 24 2014 LEEDuser Expert 8497 Thumbs Up

Marcio - Sorry for my tardy reply. I was away from all communications while on vacation but I think Jon covered the bases (thanks Jon!).

Are you clear on the situation?

3
20
0
Marcio Alberto Casado Pereira Oct 27 2014 Guest 4254 Thumbs Up

Hi Michelle and Jon,
Yes, we did it one by one and our spreadsheet does have hundreds of entries (354 to more more accurate). We always work closely with the procurement department of the construction companies and instruct them, from the onset of the Project, about how information should be entered in the spreadsheet. Since we do that since the beggining and carry it throughout construction with monthly inspections, we ensure that our Project did use actual materials cost.
In that case, what would be a compelling evidence to prove that to the review team? Do you think a letter signed by the general contractor describing and confirming this process would do?
Thanks!

4
20
0
Michelle Reott LEED AP BD+C, ID+C, O+M, Managing Principal, Earthly Ideas LLC Oct 27 2014 LEEDuser Expert 8497 Thumbs Up

Marcio - Could the review team be saying that the total of the Sustainable Materials Costs on B. Inputs of the BDC Materials and Resources calculator is equal to the Actual Material Costs you entered on A. Instructions? If so, I can see where they are concerned as these costs should not be equal. You should have material costs that do not have sustainable attributes for MRc3-7. Hence Actual Material Costs for everything in Divisions 03-10 and the required sections in 31 and 32 should theoretically be much higher than the materials that you enter into B. Inputs worksheet that have sustainable materials attributes. There is no need to enter materials that do not have sustainable material attributes into B. Inputs worksheet. This adds more work for your team and more for the review team to wade through. Only materials with sustainable materials attributes should be entered into B. Inputs. Does this help?

5
20
0
Jon Clifford LEED-AP BD+C, GREENSQUARE Oct 27 2014 LEEDuser Member 2208 Thumbs Up

Marcio—Michelle makes a good point that, because your total on Tab B matches the total on Tab A, the reviewers may have assumed that you have omitted non-contributing materials from your Total Material Cost.

Your idea is good. Look into the process used to compile the costs. Make sure to verify the following points:
1. That the cost tally includes all installed materials. (I have seen contractors omit materials that they could not find regional or recycled content data for.)
2. That the amounts reported for contributing materials correspond to the submitted regional or recycled content data. (I have seen contractors report a cost for a complex assembly, but provide data only for a single component.)
3. That the total includes all minor subcomponents and accessories of the installed assemblies. (I have seen contractors leave these out.)
4. That the values are the amounts actually invoiced (not early estimates or bids) and that they reflect complete, end-of –construction expenditures.

It actually surprises me that your list is ONLY 354 lines long. Many buildings have far more components. However, if your stadium is mostly open-air with few interior finishes, the number of materials seems more reasonable. The investigation described above should either confirm that your list of material costs is complete or help you to identify omissions and make the required corrections.

6
20
0
Geoffrey Brock Lend Lease Oct 27 2014 LEEDuser Member 47 Thumbs Up

I got some clarification on this at Greenbuild this week. Michelle, I agree with you, but the confusion arises if you are using Actual material costs for the denominator (not the 45% estimate), how else do you prove that total value for the project, if not by using (and showing on the spreadsheet) the sum of all the materials on the project? However in that case the "Total sustainable materials cost" wont the sum of only the rows contributing the sustainable criteria, but rather the total material cost. The former is irrelevant for NC and CI projects and misleading, as it is neither the numerator nor denominator of any calculation for any credit. It's merely for the reviewers to gauge for completeness. They need to make a checkbox or something that indicates if a line item is contributing to the numerator, and have E19 sum up only those values.

7
20
0
Michelle Reott LEED AP BD+C, ID+C, O+M, Managing Principal, Earthly Ideas LLC Oct 27 2014 LEEDuser Expert 8497 Thumbs Up

I have to admit that I’ve never used the Actual Materials Cost method because I think it too time consuming. However, I’ve never been asked to prove the value shown for the Total Construction Cost (of which the 45% value is derived). I would think that the reviewer would be looking at the Total Estimate Project Budget you enter into PIf2 and seeing if the Total Construction Cost or Actual Materials Cost seems reasonable in relation to the entire budget. I would think you would keep a separate spreadsheet of the materials for your Actual Materials Costs for backup/proof. (I would only upload it if asked in a review comment.) I keep one to back up the Total Construction Cost but have never been asked to produce it. I don’t think that the BDC MR Calculator is not meant to be a repository for a breakdown of these overall costs. It is meant to document materials contributing to MRc3-7.

I don’t enter anything into the B. Inputs worksheet unless it contributes to MRc3-7. (I would suggest keeping this worksheet clean and straightforward.) That is what the Sustainable Materials Cost total represents. The Total Construction Cost is entered on A. Instructions and 45% is carried over to the B. Inputs worksheet for Total Materials Cost. (If you select Actual Materials Costs on A. Instructions, then the Actual Materials Cost is carried over to the B. Inputs worksheet for Total Materials Cost.)

FYI: I think Sustainable Criteria Value cell sums up the numerator for each credit as you suggest (Column L for recycled for example).

8
20
0
Marcio Alberto Casado Pereira Oct 27 2014 Guest 4254 Thumbs Up

Michelle,

We never filled ou the spreadsheet like that, exactly because of the reason exposed by Geoffrey - how would we prove the total value input in the actual materials cost? But the way you explained makes sense now why they think the values in A. and B. should be different...

Jon,

The entire Project is basically concrete and steel. Stadium, mostly open air. Very basic interior finishes (ceramics, vynil floor, etc). That's why 354 items is reasonable.

Thank you folks!

9
20
0
Jon Clifford LEED-AP BD+C, GREENSQUARE Oct 27 2014 LEEDuser Member 2208 Thumbs Up

Marcio—It looks as though you may have it all sorted out.

Marcio/Geoffrey/Michelle—When I have used the “Actual Material Cost” method in the past, I have not required contractors to provide an item-by-item cost breakdown of every single material to substantiate the reported total. Instead, I required them to track invoices more generally at the CSI Division or Spec Section level, providing more detail only for major components relevant to MR Credits. This has avoided the nightmare of tracking costs for thousands of products individually.

Reviewers have not required me to prove the total value for the project by providing a complete list of all material costs on the Credit forms. They were satisfied only to see the contributing materials. However, time has passed. The forms have changed a bit and so may have GBCI review standards. (Marcio’s review comment suggests otherwise.)

I agree with Michelle's advice to keep Tab B clean and straightforward. On the other hand, in light of Geoffrey's comments, if I had to do it now using the current MR Calculator spreadsheet, I might include a few entries on Tab B with titles such as “Miscellaneous other Div. 04 materials” to cover the costs of the numerous non-contributing minor materials. This could show how we calculated the Total without the numbing detail of a 3-thousand-line spreadsheet. I would hope that the Review Team would find this acceptable.

More replies to "Actual Material Cost vs. Material Cost: what's the difference?" on next page...

Start a new LEED comment thread

Jul 29 2015
Type the characters you see in this picture. (verify using audio)
Type the characters you see in the picture above; if you can't read them, submit the form and a new image will be generated. Not case sensitive.

Copyright 2015 – BuildingGreen, Inc.