What is the Living Building Challenge and How Can STI Meet Your Project Needs?

Mar 27, 2019 by George Gornick, Applications Engineer

The Living Building Challenge (LBC) is a green building certification program and sustainable design framework that was created in 2006 by the non-profit International Living Future Institute. The LBC, arguably, is the world’s most rigorous proven performance standard for buildings. People from around the world use this regenerative design framework to create spaces that, like a flower, give more than they take. With the LBC, you can create buildings that are regenerative as well as healthy and beautiful. These building spaces connect occupants to light, air, food, nature, and community, are self-sufficient, and remain within the resource limits of their site. Living Buildings produce more energy than they use and collect and treat all water on site.

Additionally, LBC requires meter data from one year of operation to confirm that the project generated at least as much energy as it used. In other words, a LBC building must achieve net-zero energy use. LBC requires that the project use only water that arrives on site naturally, and also requires that the water be treated on site and returned to the natural cycle. LBC requires that the landscape be a source of local, organic food production.

The LBC standard sets twenty imperatives, grouped into seven performance levels called petals (like a flower), which all must be met to be LBC certified.

Specified Technologies Inc. (STI) Firestop products can help meet LBC project requirements as they pertain to:

  • Imperative 08 (Healthy Interior Environment). The LBC v3.1 Materials Petal Handbook states that wet-applied
    products (coatings, adhesives, sealants) must not exceed specific VOC levels as determined by the South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD) Rule 1168. Specified Technologies Inc.’s sprays and sealants are under the category Architectural Sealants and fall well below the max allowable limit of 250g/L. We also have Emission Test Reports per the CDPH standard 2010 v1.1 which includes a Total VOC (TVOC) Chart listing chamber concentration in micro gram/cubic meter (μg/m3) for elapsed exposures of 24, 48 and 96 hours after 10 days of conditioning. Sustainability Forms require input in milligram/cubic meter (mg/m3). i.e.: SpecSeal® LCI Intumescent Sealant lists a value of 310 μg/m3 which is equal to 3.1 mg/m3 after elapsed exposure of 96 hours.
    • Imperative 10 (Red List Compliant) as our firestop products are free from Red List materials or chemicals. An excel spreadsheet of Red List CAS# Guide can be downloaded here. Please call STI Customer Service, 800-992-1180, to obtain an updated list of SpecSeal® products that are RED List Compliant.

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