The Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method (BREEAM) scheme provides authoritative guidance on ways of minimising the adverse effects of buildings on the global and local environments whilst promoting a healthy and comfortable indoor environment for users.
The scheme is internationally recognised and forms a significant component of the environmental and sustainable development policy of many organisations and businesses. BREEAM is used in PPP/PFI output specifications and is now a standard sustainable development performance measurement tool.
A BREEAM assessment provides a building with an environmental performance certificate that enables owners and occupants to gain recognition for the building and their environmental performance. The building’s overall BREEAM rating is classified as either ‘pass’, ‘good’, ‘very good’, ‘excellent’ or ‘outstanding’.
The UK Government’s Sustainability Action Plan requires all central government construction projects to include a BREEAM assessment. Government construction projects are required to achieve as a minimum, ‘very good’ ratings for refurbishment projects and ‘excellent’ ratings for new builds.
BREEAM Assessments are initiated during the Design and Procurement (D&P) phase of a new build or refurbishment project, and subsequently require a Post Construction Review to confirm certification. Operation and Maintenance (O&M) phase assessments can also be performed to assess the building’s ongoing environmental performance.