Nudge people to use designated smoking areas by providing amenities like seating, protection from weather, and cigarette receptacles. Photo – Cory DoctorowEnvironmental tobacco smoke (ETSEnvironmental tobacco smoke (ETS), or secondhand smoke, consists of airborne particles emitted from the burning end of cigarettes, pipes, and cigars, and is exhaled by smokers. These particles contain about 4,000 compounds, up to 50 of which are known to cause cancer.) is a well-documented human health hazard. The only way to eliminate the threat of ETS is to completely prohibit smoking indoors, which is why LEED v4 gives no way around the requirement to ban indoor smoking. This is a departure from LEED 2009, which permitted designated interior smoking rooms.
Residential projects remain an exception to the interior no-smoking rule. See below for specific considerations for residential projects.
Smoking must be prohibited within 25 feet of building entries, outdoor air intakes, and operable windows. If you want to create a designated smoking area it must be located at least 25 feet away from building openings.
Additionally, if a portion of the site is used for business purposes–courtyards or a cafe with sidewalk seating, for example–this area must also be 100% smoke-free. Smoking must be prohibited in this type of area regardless of whether it’s inside or outside the property line.
No smoking signage must be placed within 10 feet of every building entrance. The only entrances exempt from this requirement are alarmed emergency exits.
The LEED Reference Guide doesn’t mandate any particular language for signage, but it does provide some suggestions: “Smoking is allowed in designated smoking areas only” or “No smoking allowed within 25 feet.”
Smoking can be permitted in residential projects in specific units. However, additional work will be required to confirm that smoke isn’t moving from smoking units to non-smoking areas of the building. See the LEED Reference Guide for specific information on the requirements for this situation.
If you’re working on a LEED for Schools project you’ll need to ensure that smoking is prohibited on entire site. Signage detailing this policy must be posted at the property line, rather than near the building entrances.
Yes. If local regulations are not as strict as LEED you must create a policy that complies with LEED standards (and communicate this policy to building users) to achieve this prerequisite. Exterior signage that communicates the policy is required so that all occupants, visitors, and passersby are made aware of the exterior smoking policy.
This is acceptable as long as the emergency exit has an alarm. Emergency exits without alarms qualify as building openings and must have signage.
Smoking still needs to be prohibited in areas used for business purposes as well as public sidewalks that are within 25 feet of the building. If existing code explicitly prohibits you from extending your no-smoking zone, you should still be able to earn the prerequisite if you provide a copy of the code restriction.
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. 10388 confirms that electronic cigarettes are considered a form of smoking. It also updated the definition of smoke to include “smoke produced from the combustion of cannabis and controlled substances and the vapors produced by electronic smoking devices."
The LEED Reference Guide states that prohibiting smoking on residential balconies is a recommended strategy for protecting non-smoking units and balconies. But, it doesn’t explicitly say that smoking must be prohibited. If you do allow smoking on balconies attached to smoking units, ensure that you’re able to achieve and demonstrate proper air sealing using the strategies in the LEED Reference Guide.
Prohibit smoking on site.
Signage must be posted at the property line indicating the no-smoking policy.
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