Earth Advantage Small Commercial Certification

Prescriptive high performance certification for small commercial buildings

Overview
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Earth Advantage Commercial (EAC) was developed to specifically address the green building certification needs of smaller commercial projects. It reduces the costs and complexities of delivering certification to smaller buildings while providing comprehensive and robust results. Over 90% of new buildings are 50,000 sq. ft. or less but unfortunately, the vast majority of these buildings are built without receiving any formal green certification. Despite the tremendous success and quality of LEED®, implementation of LEED for smaller, typical commercial projects has been very modest. 

EAC offers a complementary certification option by providing a primarily prescriptive system that is streamlined and cost-effective for project teams who might be reluctant to certify to LEED standards. For instance, EAC utilizes the New Buildings Institute’s Advanced Buildings Core Performance Guide – a prescriptive, best-practices guide developed specifically for small commercial buildings as the foundation for its group of energy measures. 

Our goal is to supply a streamlined, cost-effective and comprehensive small commercial certification that helps to fill the gap in the 50,000 square foot and under market.

Benefits

The comprehensive nature of the Earth Advantage Commercial program is designed to improve health, comfort, durability, energy efficiency and water efficiency while reducing operating expenses. Earth Advantage Commercial incorporates key high performance strategies through a streamlined set of cumulative measures which helps keep certification soft costs low. The result is a straightforward system for certifying mainstream small commercial buildings.

Key Facts

  • Accommodates buildings up to 70,000 sq. ft.

  • Designed for new construction and major renovations

  • Best suited for buildings from 5,000 to 50,000 sq. ft.

  • No energy modeling required

  • Commissioning only required at Platinum level certification

  • No points system - prescriptive sets of measures

  • Significant energy savings beyond code using proven strategies

  • Energy pathway utilizes nationally recognized Advanced Buildings Core Performance Guide

  • Typical Building Types: Office, Medical Office, Retail, Restaurants, Schools and Higher Ed, Public Assembly

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Project Delivery
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Benefits
The comprehensive nature of the Earth Advantage Commercial program is designed to improve health, comfort, durability, energy efficiency and water efficiency while reducing operating expenses. Earth Advantage Commercial incorporates key high performance strategies through a streamlined set of cumulative measures which helps keep certification soft costs low. The result is a straightforward system for certifying mainstream small commercial buildings.

EAC workflow diagram

Earth Advantage Commercial Facts

  • Accommodates buildings up to 70,000 sq. ft.
  • Designed for new construction and major renovations
  • Best suited for buildings smaller than 50,000 sq. ft.
  • No energy modeling required
  • Commissioning only required at Platinum level certification
  • No points system - prescriptive sets of measures
  • 30% average energy savings beyond code
  • Standards and tools referenced (partial list): FSC, GreenGuard®, 
    Green Seal, Walk Score®, International Dark Sky Association, ENERGY STAR including Portfolio Manager
  • Energy Code Referenced: ASHRAE 90.1 - 2007
  • Project size range: 5,000 - 100,000 sq. ft. 
    (systems must be compatible with the Advanced Buildings Core Performance Guide)
  • Typical Building Types: Office including Medical Office, Retail including Restaurants, 
    Schools and Higher Ed, Public Assembly
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Project Stewards
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Project Stewards

Project Stewards are the EAC accredited professionals who manage the requirements for certification throughout the design and construction process. They are typically architects, engineers or green building consultants and could also be design-build contractors or owners’ representatives who are very involved in the delivery process throughout design and construction. Professionals become EAC Project Stewards by completing the EAC Project Steward Training and passing a written test on the program. 

Current Independent Project Stewards:  

  • Camilla Cok 
    (Henneberry Eddy Architects)
  • Morgan Fredrickson 
    (R&H Construction)
  • Brad Hakala 
    (Blaise Cacciola Architects)
  • Geoffrey Harker 
    (Richard Brown Architect AIA)
  • Neal Huston 
    (Neal Huston & Associates Architects Inc.)
  • Lona Rerick 
    (ZGF Architects)
  • Amy Jarvis 
    (ZGF Architects)
  • Scott Rogers 
    (Wenaha Group)
  • Andrew Schafer 
    (Portland General Electric)
  • Stacey Stemach 
    (Stemach Design and Architecture)
  • Brian Thornton 
    (Thornton Energy Consulting)
  • Heather DeGrella 
    (Opsis Architecture)
  • David Leatherwood 
    (Intelepoint)
  • Tyler Moffet 
    (System Design Consultants)
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Resources
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images of EAC projects

If you have a new or deep retrofit commercial construction project under 50,000 square feet in scale you think is a candidate for our certification, please see above for a list of Project Stewards and contact the firm of your choice regarding commercial certification.  

If you are interested in becoming a Project Steward in order to deliver the Earth Advantage Commercial certification, please contact:

Peter Brown 
Director of Certifications 
(503) 840-5712

Documentation

Commercial Measures Summary (pdf) 
Commercial Measure Catalog (pdf) 
EAC Overview Brochure (pdf) 11 x 17" spread version 
COCC Jungers Culinary Center Case Study

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