What Is LEED?

LEED is a set of standards for the design, construction, operation and maintenance of green buildings in the United States. It is a ratings system in which buildings are inspected and given points in different areas for meeting or exceeding standards. LEED stands for "Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design."

Buildings must have a certain collective number of credits accumulated through earning points to be LEED certified. Varying levels of certification are available, and various accreditations are also granted to individuals through the Green Building Certification Institute based on their knowledge of LEED. The system was developed and is overseen by the U.S. Green Building Council.