Today we talk to product specialists at MCC Dental to understand the significance of LEED certification and how MCC contributes to the scoring of the overall rating system.
Interview By Helen Bullingham
HB: What is LEED certification?
MCC: LEED stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. It is the rating system used in over 160 countries to evaluate the environmental performance of a building. The system is credit based and allows building projects and buildings to earn points for taking environmentally friendly actions either during construction or in the use of the building itself. LEED certification is available to any type of building: commercial or residential, newly constructed or renovated.
HB: Why is LEED certification important?
MCC: Having a rating system ensures that a LEED-certified building is designed and built using the strategies that improve the things that matter most; Energy savings and CO2 emissions reduction. LEED also helps to ensure that we recognize a high standard of performance in the following categories: Sustainable Sites, Water Efficiency, Energy and Atmosphere, Materials and Resources, Indoor Environmental Quality, Innovation in Design, and Regional Property. Each category offers the opportunity to earn points toward certification.
In short, LEED is important, because environmental stewardship is important for the well-being of our families and the next generation.
HB: Can you provide examples of how the LEED point system works?
MCC: To become LEED certified, your building would need to earn 40-49 points. But actually, there are four (4) levels of certification that you could achieve. 50-59 points will get you a level 2 Silver, 60-79 points will get you level 3 Gold, and 80 – above will get you LEED’s highest rating at Platinum level. If you are looking to make your dental practice as ‘Green’ as you can, you want to strive for the most points possible!
In new construction, you could earn One (1) Point for Sustainable Purchasing of Durable goods, One (1) Point for using low emitting materials, and Two (2) Points for using recycled content.
HB: How is the FSC Certificate (Forestry Stewardship Council) built into LEED?
MCC: FSC is one of the certificates that LEED would look for when you are trying to get your building certified. FSC is a program for wood products that come from forests that are managed in an economical visible way. They do this by setting standards for responsible forest management which are then used to evaluate the forests to their strict environmental and social standards, protecting conservation land and wildlife as well. The intent of incorporating FSC Certificates into LEED is to encourage environmentally responsible forest management.
HB: How many LEED points can you earn with MCC products?
MCC: Our ST Sterilization units are constructed from a product made from a blend of new and recycled polymers, which are all FDA approved and are all formaldehyde free. The material contains no known harmful toxins and no off-gassing occurs when the sheets are cut and fabricated. The material also inhibits the growth of stain and odor-causing bacteria, alga, and fungi. You could earn up to 6 points when choosing this material for fulfilling the following criteria: purchasing durable goods, recycled content, and low emitting materials.
MCC’s Solid Surface countertops are GREENGUARD Gold certified for indoor air quality; the strict criteria considers safety for environmentally sensitive individuals like the elderly and children. As a result, our Solid Surface countertops are acceptable for use in healthcare facilities, and are referenced as part of the LEED rating system. Some of our Solid Surface choices are also made from recycled content. Dental professionals can call in to speak with one of our Representatives about these color choices!
HB: Is LEED a trend with dental practices?
MCC: Being LEED certified is definitely an upward trend. More and more of our customers are asking for an environmentally friendly product for their dental practice. In fact, due to popular demand, one of MCC’s main suppliers ONLY offers material that complies with the ratings to be LEED certified.
Having environmentally friendly or ‘Green’ products won’t cost you more! Since more dental practitioners are heading towards a “greener” solution, you will find most products on the market these days to be eco-friendly in one way or another; it is pretty much the standard now across the industry.
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