Home | About us | What we do | Sectors | Contact us | Careers | Travel to BRE | News & Information | Services A-Z | Login

FAQs - Materials Specification Credits




1. I cannot find a specification that matches my query. What do I do?

As a licensed BREEAM/EcoHomes/Code for Sustainable Home Assessor, you may now use the Green Guide Calculator online tool to model a new bespoke element using available Green Guide Components.  If you find that your particular specification cannot be adequately defined by using this tool, please complete the proforma that can be found on the BREEAM assessors extranet and e-mail to BREEAMMaterials@bre.co.uk

2. I would like your help to persuade my local authority that a one specification is a more sustainable solution than another one. I have the Green Guide which shows this is the case.

"My question is with regards to the consultation process. Has the Mayor of London endorsed the Green Guide or does it form part of the London Plan or is there any political slant I can add to my argument to say that they should be choosing the more sustainable option?"

We are not aware of any particular commitments the Mayor's office has made regarding the use of BREEAM, Code for Sustainable Homes or the Green Guide to Specification. UK central Government has made it a requirement that all estate construction work is assessed using BREEAM and at this time all social housing must be assessed using the Code. As a result material embodied impact as assessed by the Green Guide to Specification is crucial to many government construction works. BRE Global would always encourage the use of A+ and A ratings to optimise the embodied environmental impact of specification selection.

3. What is fair-faced blockwork within the context of load bearing party walls?

The term fair-faced blockwork applies to external or internal walls that have not had a finish applied to them, e.g. have not been rendered or plastered or do not have plasterboard fixed to them.

4. Please can you confirm which version of the Green Guide should be used for jobs registered before the online version was released in June 2008.

BREEAM and EcoHomes assessments registered to existing versions may continue using the relevant 2000 and 2002 Green Guides to award credits, until such time as those existing versions of BREEAM and EcoHomes are discontinued.

If the building specification is not in the 2000 or 2002 Green Guides, but is in the new Guide, assessors may use the new Guide to determine the rating. In this situation, the new Green Guide rating corresponds to the old as follows:

Table 1: Translating new Green Guide ratings to old Green Guide rating bands

2008 Green Guide rating

Equivalent 2000 and 2002 Green Guide rating

Credit awarded?

A+

A

Yes

A

A

Yes

B

B

No

C

B

No

D

C

No

E

C

No

If the specification is in the new (2008) and old (2000 and 2002) Guides, it is at the assessors discretion to determine and select which rating is most appropriate for the BREEAM/EcoHomes assessment.

From the point of launch of the new Green Guide in June 2008, any request for a bespoke Green Guide rating will be determined against the new Green Guide methodology, regardless of the BREEAM or EcoHomes version. BREEAM and EcoHomes credits in this circumstance will therefore be awarded in accordance with Table 1.

 

Green Guide version

BREEAM non domestic - 2006 versions and earlier

BREEAM non domestic - 2008

EcoHomes 2006 and earlier

Code for Sustainable Homes

Published ratings in Green Guide to Housing Specification (GGHS 2000)

N/A

N/A

Can always be used

Cannot be used

Ratings for products with certificated Environmental Profiles to GGHS 2000 Methodology

N/A

N/A

Can always be used

Cannot be used

Ratings provided by BRE for specifications unlisted in the GGHS 2000 Methodology

N/A

N/A

Can always be used

Cannot be used

Interim Ratings for Code for Sustainable Homes

N/A

N/A

N/A

Can be used for schemes registered prior to the release of New Green Guide ratings.

Published ratings in Green Guide to Specification: 3rd edition (GG3 2002)

Can always be used

Cannot be used

N/A

N/A

Ratings for products with certificated Environmental Profiles to GG3 2002 Methodology

Can always be used

Cannot be used

N/A

N/A

Ratings provided by BRE for specifications unlisted in the GG3 2002 Methodology

Can always be used

Cannot be used

N/A

N/A

New Green Guide ratings provided through the Green Guide Online

Can be used by all schemes

Can be used by all schemes

Can be used by all schemes

Can be used by all schemes

New Green Guide ratings for products with certificated Environmental Profiles

Can be used by all schemes

Can be used by all schemes

Can be used by all schemes

Can be used by all schemes

New Green Guide ratings provided by BRE for specifications unlisted in the new methodology

Can be used by all schemes

Can be used by all schemes

Can be used by all schemes

Can be used by all schemes

5. How do I achieve Code Level 5 or 6 using Bespoke Green Guide Ratings?

Projects seeking to achieve Code Level 5 and 6 tend to have their element specifications designed to surpass the current Building Regulations requirement by a considerable margin. With the current generic Green Guide element specifications being generated based on the Building Regulations requirements, we believe that for these levels, many designs have significantly different construction details in order to accommodate the required amount of insulation and that this is likely to have an effect on the embodied impact of the building. Where this impact is substantially increased there is obviously a trade off between embodied impact and operational impact which needs to be reflected within the Code assessment.  We would therefore like to remind assessors again that they need to submit bespoke green guide proformas for each of the external envelope element specifications to BREEAM Materials in the case where a particular project is seeking to achieve Code Level 5 and 6.