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FMT315 Sustainable Buildings SUSS Assignment Sample Singapore

FMT315 Sustainable Buildings offers students a comprehensive understanding of sustainability principles and green building assessment methodologies applicable to both new constructions and existing structures. Exploring regulatory frameworks and performance standards, the course delves into sustainable building practices adopted locally and internationally. 

Students will learn to evaluate a building’s sustainability utilizing the Singapore Green Mark Standards, gaining insights into green technologies essential for sustainable operation. Through lectures and practical sessions, participants will grasp the principles and features of sustainable building technologies, equipping them with the knowledge to contribute to environmentally conscious building practices.

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Assignment Activity 1: Demonstrate basic understanding of the legislative requirements on Environmental Sustainability for buildings in Singapore.

In Singapore, the legislative framework for environmental sustainability in buildings is primarily governed by the Building Control Act and its associated regulations. The key legislation and guidelines that mandate environmental sustainability measures include:

  • Building Control Act (BCA): The BCA sets out the regulatory framework for the construction, maintenance, and safety standards of buildings in Singapore. It empowers the Building and Construction Authority (BCA) to enforce regulations related to environmental sustainability.
  • Building Control Regulations (BCR): These regulations provide specific requirements and standards for various aspects of building design, construction, and operation. They include provisions related to energy efficiency, water conservation, and environmental impact mitigation.
  • Green Mark Scheme: The Green Mark Scheme is a green building rating system developed by the BCA to evaluate the environmental performance of buildings in Singapore. It provides incentives and recognition for buildings that incorporate sustainable design and construction practices.
  • Environmental Sustainability Guidelines: The BCA publishes guidelines and technical specifications to support the implementation of environmental sustainability measures in buildings. These guidelines cover areas such as energy efficiency, indoor environmental quality, and sustainable materials.
  • Code of Practice on Environmental Sustainability for Buildings: This code outlines best practices and recommended strategies for achieving environmental sustainability in building design, construction, and operation. It serves as a reference for building professionals and developers to meet regulatory requirements and achieve green building certification.
  • Energy Conservation Act: The Energy Conservation Act mandates energy efficiency measures for buildings and industrial facilities in Singapore. It requires building owners to conduct energy audits and implement energy-saving measures to reduce consumption and greenhouse gas emissions.

Overall, compliance with these legislative requirements is essential for ensuring that buildings in Singapore contribute to environmental sustainability and meet the nation’s goals for energy efficiency and conservation.

Assignment Activity 2: Deconstruct the submission procedures and requirements for certification.

Deconstructing the submission procedures and requirements for certification involves understanding the process of obtaining green building certification in Singapore. Here’s an overview:

  • Pr-application Stage: eBefore applying for certification, building owners or developers typically engage consultants or green building assessors to assess the project’s compliance with green building standards. This may involve conducting feasibility studies, energy modeling, and environmental impact assessments.
  • Application Submission: Once the project is ready for certification, the applicant submits an application to the relevant authority, such as the Building and Construction Authority (BCA) for the Green Mark Scheme or other certification bodies accredited by the BCA.
  • Documentation Requirements: The application must include comprehensive documentation demonstrating compliance with the certification criteria. This may include architectural drawings, engineering calculations, energy simulation reports, material specifications, and other relevant information.
  • Review and Evaluation: The certification body reviews the submitted documentation and conducts site inspections to verify compliance with green building standards. They assess various aspects of the project, such as energy efficiency, water conservation, indoor environmental quality, and sustainable site development.
  • Certification Decision: Based on the evaluation findings, the certification body makes a decision on whether to award certification. This may involve different levels of certification, such as Platinum, GoldPlus, Gold, or Certified, depending on the project’s performance against the certification criteria.
  • Certification Issuance: If the project meets the requirements, the certification body issues a green building certificate to the applicant. This certificate serves as official recognition of the project’s environmental sustainability achievements and may confer benefits such as tax incentives, marketing advantages, and enhanced property value.
  • Post-certification Compliance: After obtaining certification, building owners are typically required to maintain compliance with the certification requirements throughout the building’s lifecycle. This may involve periodic audits, performance monitoring, and reporting to ensure ongoing environmental sustainability.

By understanding and following these submission procedures and requirements, building owners and developers can navigate the process of obtaining green building certification effectively and contribute to the advancement of environmental sustainability in Singapore’s built environment.

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Assignment Activity 3: Appraise and describe the differences between the different Green Building certifications.

Green building certifications vary in their criteria, focus areas, and assessment methodologies. Here’s an appraisal and description of the key differences between some of the prominent green building certifications:

LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design):

  • Developed by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), LEED is one of the most widely recognized green building certification systems globally.
  • LEED certification emphasizes a holistic approach to sustainability, covering areas such as energy efficiency, water conservation, indoor environmental quality, materials selection, and sustainable site development.
  • LEED offers different rating systems tailored to various building types, including new construction, existing buildings, commercial interiors, and neighborhood development.
  • Projects earn points across different categories and achieve different levels of certification (Certified, Silver, Gold, Platinum) based on their total points.

BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method):

  • Developed by the Building Research Establishment (BRE) in the United Kingdom, BREEAM is another widely used green building certification system.
  • BREEAM assesses the environmental performance of buildings across various categories, including energy, water, materials, pollution, and management.
  • Unlike LEED, which uses a points-based system, BREEAM uses a pass/fail approach, with projects needing to meet minimum requirements in each category to achieve certification.
  • BREEAM certifications are available for different building types, including new construction, refurbishment, and in-use buildings.

Green Mark (Singapore):

  • Developed by the Building and Construction Authority (BCA) in Singapore, the Green Mark Scheme assesses the environmental sustainability of buildings in Singapore.
  • Green Mark certification focuses on energy efficiency, water conservation, environmental impact, indoor environmental quality, and innovation.
  • The Green Mark Scheme offers different levels of certification, including Platinum, GoldPlus, Gold, and Certified, based on the project’s performance against the certification criteria.
  • It incorporates local context and regulations specific to Singapore’s built environment.

Living Building Challenge:

  • The Living Building Challenge, developed by the International Living Future Institute, is a rigorous green building certification program focused on regenerative design principles.
  • Unlike other certifications, the Living Building Challenge aims for projects to achieve net-positive energy, water, and waste outcomes.
  • Projects pursuing Living Building Challenge certification must meet a set of imperatives across seven performance areas, including site, water, energy, health, materials, equity, and beauty.
  • Living Building Challenge projects must operate for a minimum of 12 months to demonstrate compliance with performance requirements.

Each of these green building certifications offers unique features and focuses, catering to different project types, geographical regions, and sustainability priorities. Understanding these differences is crucial for selecting the most appropriate certification for a given project and maximizing its environmental performance.

Assignment Activity 4: Demonstrate ability to interpret the various international green building assessment systems.

Interpreting various international green building assessment systems involves understanding the key principles, criteria, and assessment methodologies used by different certification programs. Here’s an interpretation of some of the prominent international green building assessment systems:

LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design):

  • LEED evaluates the environmental performance of buildings across several categories, including sustainable site development, water efficiency, energy and atmosphere, materials and resources, indoor environmental quality, and innovation.
  • Projects earn points for meeting specific criteria within each category, with the total points determining the level of certification (Certified, Silver, Gold, Platinum).
  • LEED emphasizes a holistic approach to sustainability, considering factors such as location, transportation, energy use, water consumption, materials selection, indoor air quality, and occupant comfort.

BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method):

  • BREEAM assesses the environmental sustainability of buildings across nine categories, including energy, health and well-being, pollution, land use, ecology, and management.
  • Unlike LEED’s points-based system, BREEAM uses a pass/fail approach, with projects needing to meet minimum requirements in each category to achieve certification.
  • BREEAM certification is available for different building types, including new construction, refurbishment, and in-use buildings, with separate assessment criteria for each type.

Green Star (Australia):

  • Green Star, developed by the Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA), is an assessment system for evaluating the environmental sustainability of buildings and communities.
  • Green Star certification focuses on nine categories, including management, indoor environment quality, energy, transport, water, materials, land use and ecology, emissions, and innovation.
  • Projects earn credits for meeting specific criteria within each category, with the total credits determining the level of certification (4 Star, 5 Star, 6 Star).

Living Building Challenge:

  • The Living Building Challenge is a performance-based certification program that aims for buildings to achieve net-positive energy, water, and waste outcomes.
  • Living Building Challenge projects must meet a set of imperatives across seven performance areas, including site, water, energy, health, materials, equity, and beauty.
  • Unlike other certification systems, Living Building Challenge certification requires projects to demonstrate actual performance over a minimum of 12 consecutive months of occupancy.

Interpreting these international green building assessment systems involves understanding the specific criteria, rating systems, and assessment processes used by each program. By evaluating these systems, building owners, developers, and designers can make informed decisions to enhance the environmental sustainability of their projects and contribute to global efforts to combat climate change and promote sustainable development.

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Assignment Activity 5: Relate to the Green Mark Criteria and be able to compute Green Mark scores for new and existing buildings.

The Green Mark Scheme, developed by the Building and Construction Authority (BCA) in Singapore, assesses the environmental sustainability of buildings based on various criteria. Here’s how to relate to the Green Mark criteria and compute Green Mark scores for both new and existing buildings:

Understanding Green Mark Criteria:

  • The Green Mark criteria cover several aspects of environmental sustainability, including energy efficiency, water conservation, indoor environmental quality, site sustainability, and innovation.
  • Each criterion consists of specific requirements and performance standards that buildings must meet to achieve certification.

Computing Green Mark Scores for New Buildings:

  • For new buildings, the Green Mark score is computed based on the fulfillment of criteria across different categories.
  • Building designs are evaluated against benchmarks and performance targets set by the BCA.
  • Points are allocated for meeting specific requirements within each criterion. The total points determine the level of Green Mark certification (Platinum, GoldPlus, Gold, or Certified).
  • Green Mark assessors review building designs, plans, and specifications to verify compliance with the certification criteria.

Computing Green Mark Scores for Existing Buildings:

  • For existing buildings undergoing retrofit or renovation, the Green Mark score is computed based on improvements made to enhance environmental sustainability.
  • Similar to new buildings, points are allocated for meeting specific requirements within each criterion.
  • The assessment considers factors such as energy efficiency upgrades, water-saving measures, indoor air quality improvements, and sustainable materials.
  • Green Mark assessors conduct site inspections and review documentation to assess the environmental performance of existing buildings and determine their eligibility for certification.

To compute Green Mark scores effectively, building owners, developers, and design teams must familiarize themselves with the Green Mark criteria, assess project compliance, and implement measures to enhance environmental sustainability. Engaging qualified Green Mark assessors and consultants can also facilitate the certification process and ensure adherence to certification requirements.

Assignment Activity 6: Organise the filing of Green Mark or other Green Building applications.

 Organizing the filing of Green Mark or other green building applications involves several steps to ensure a smooth and efficient certification process:

Pre-Application Preparation:

  • Gather necessary documentation, including architectural drawings, engineering calculations, energy models, material specifications, and project plans.
  • Engage qualified consultants or green building assessors to assess project compliance with certification criteria and provide guidance on meeting certification requirements.

Application Submission:

  • Complete the application form provided by the relevant certification authority, such as the Building and Construction Authority (BCA) for Green Mark certification.
  • Compile all required documentation and submit it along with the application form.
  • Ensure that the application fee, if applicable, is paid according to the certification authority’s guidelines.

Review and Evaluation:

  • After submitting the application, the certification authority will review the documentation and assess the project’s compliance with certification criteria.
  • Respond promptly to any requests for additional information or clarification from the certification authority.
  • Cooperate with the certification process and provide access to the project site for inspections, if required.

Certification Decision:

  • Once the review and evaluation process is complete, the certification authority will make a decision on whether to award certification.
  • If the project meets the certification requirements, the certification authority will issue a green building certificate to the applicant.

Post-Certification Compliance:

  • After obtaining certification, ensure ongoing compliance with certification requirements throughout the building’s lifecycle.
  • Maintain records of ongoing operations, maintenance, and performance monitoring to demonstrate continued adherence to certification standards.
  • Renew certification as required by the certification authority and undertake necessary recertification activities to maintain compliance.

By organizing the filing of Green Mark or other green building applications systematically and following the certification process diligently, building owners and developers can streamline the certification process and achieve their environmental sustainability goals effectively.

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