TEC building

May 12, 2015, by sustainablenottingham

BREEAM- what is it all about?

Walking around the University’s UK campuses, you can hardly fail to see the current building work and the creation of new facilities. The team that is responsible for the effective delivery of these building projects is the Development Team, based within the Estates Office.

The Development Team ensure that any new development meets all necessary requirements, such as BREEAM accreditation. But what is BREEAM and why is it so important to the University?

BREEAM stands for Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Methodology and is the world’s foremost environmental assessment method and rating system for buildings, with 425,000 buildings having certified BREEAM assessment ratings and two million registered for assessment since it was first launched in 1990.

BREEAM sets the standard for best practice in sustainable building design, construction and operation and has become one of the most comprehensive and widely recognised measures of a building’s environmental performance. It encourages designers, clients and others to think about low carbon and low impact design, minimising the energy demands created by a building before considering energy efficiency and low carbon technologies.

How BREEAM works

BREEAM rewards performance above regulation which delivers environmental, comfort or health benefits. The measures used represent a broad range of categories and criteria from energy to ecology. BREEAM awards points or ‘credits’ and groups the environmental impacts as follows:

Health and Wellbeing
Water consumption and efficiency
Land Use

The total number of points or credits gained in each section is multiplied by an environmental weighting factor which takes into account the relative importance of each section. Section scores are then added together to produce a single overall score. Once the overall score for the building is known this is translated into a rating on a scale of:

Very Good

 BREEAM at the University

The University established as its benchmark position, BREEAM ‘Excellent’ for all major developments since 2010 and is a lead HE Institution in terms of the number of schemes submitted and certified, which currently stands at 12 schemes (view all BREEAM certified schemes here). Other ratings are then considered for a project on an individual case.

Over the past few years, the University has gained BREEAM ‘Outstanding’ for the Energy Technologies Building (Jubilee Campus), as well as other awards, The Barn at Sutton Bonington is expected to gain ‘Excellent’, as will  the nearly completed George Green Library. Future developments, including the Technology Entrepreneurship Centre building (Jubilee Campus), the proposed new Teaching building (near Hallward Library on University Park) and the Advanced Manufacturing building (Jubilee Campus),will all aim for BREEAM ‘Excellent’.

The GlaxoSmithKline Carbon Neutral Laboratory of Sustainable Chemistry will achieve BREEAM ‘Outstanding’ though it is also being assessed against LEED – the United States Green Building Council version of BREEAM where we are targeting LEED Platinum as part of this building’s unique position and construction.

For more information visit the Development team website.


Posted in BuildingsCapital ProjectscarbonCSRDevelopmentEnvironmentEstates Office