While LEED ensures that buildings are designed and constructed to sustainable standards, its certification ends at time of occupancy. ARC, a USGBC program, continues by tracking building performance throughout occupancy. By recording five sustainable aspects of operational use - Energy, Water, Waste, Transportation, and Human Experience - Arc provides LEED projects a streamlined way to monitor performance data and identify areas of improvement.
Base points depend on the LEED building design score.
Energy scores are generated based on comparisons with other buildings of similar occupancy, function, and square footage; scores automatically tracked by linking your EnergyStar Portfolio to ARC.
Water scores are likewise benchmarked against buildings of similar occupancy, function, and square footage; scores automatically tracked by linking your EnergyStar Portfolio to ARC.
Input a one-time annual audit of landfill and recycling waste by weight.
Administer at least one annual survey concerning mode of transportation.
Monitor indoor air quality readings, and administer at least one occupant survey for ARC to generate a score.
According to the 2015 Austin Climate Plan, buildings are responsible for over 40% of all carbon emissions in the Austin area. Tracking energy usage creates a visual way to measure energy performance, enabling users to set goals to protect the environment while saving in operational cost.
Water conservation is imperative to the decreasing potable water source on the planet. Only 1% of the world's drinking water is potable and accessible. Using ARC, leaks can be found, preventing wastefulness of water.
Waste Generation and Diversion
While ARC's waste score factors in both amount of waste generated and the percentage of waste diverted, the score is weighted more heavily towards reduction of generated waste with the hope of encouraging users to consider reducing overall impact of waste on the planet.
Single Occupancy Vehicles are the dominant mode of transportation by Austin commuters. While convenient, SOVs exacerbate traffic congestion, takes up valuable parking space, and contributes to the increased carbon emissions in the city. A single person carpooling, using a bike, or taking public transportation methods greatly cuts down the carbon impact and creates a healthier Austin.
Occupant Satisfaction, VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds) and carbon dioxide testing contribute to this category. VOCs are harmful gases emitted by nearly all man-made consumer products. High indoor concentrations of carbon dioxide or VOCs can cause a feeling of 'stuffiness', headaches, fatigue, drowsiness, and lack of attentiveness.