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New milestone LEED certification for San Francisco International Airport


San Francisco International Airport (SFO) has become the first gateway in the world to earn airport-wide LEED Platinum certification under the Communities programme developed by the US Green Building Council.

While individual buildings at SFO have previously earned Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) status, this latest achievement certifies the entire existing airport campus using the LEED for Cities and Communities rating system.

The system provides a framework for measuring, managing, and improving the performance of water and energy use, quality of life, waste, transportation, ecology, and other factors at a campus level.

“We are honoured to be the first in the world to have our entire airport campus certified as a LEED Platinum Community,” enthused SFO’s airport director, Ivar Satero.

“SFO functions very much like its own city, and this certification recognises the incredible efforts happening every day by staff across campus to ensure that our energy, water, fuel, transportation, broader systems all operate towards our goal of achieving zero emissions, zero net energy, and zero waste going to landfill.

“We share this achievement with all that travel through and provide service excellence for our airport.”

Peter Templeton, interim president and CEO of the USGBC, said: “LEED has been a transformative tool for buildings, and we are now seeing the impact it can have at a wider scale with LEED for Communities certification for an entire airport campus.

“By prioritising issues such as sustainability, resilience, green infrastructure and more, SFO is leading the way to a better world and helping USGBC continue toward our goal of a sustainable future for all.”

The LEED v4.1 for Communities platinum certificate recognises SFO’s innovative and continuing efforts focused on programmes that aim to achieve zero waste, provide sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) for aircraft, electric vehicles and busses, improved indoor and environmental quality for passengers and employees, all electric new facilities, and low embodied carbon (decarbonised) building materials.

SFO notes that an essential element of the LEED for Communities certification is the recognition that it has a portfolio of more than 45% of very high performing buildings or tenant spaces that are registered or certified to LEED or other equivalent green building rating systems.

The airport has previously earned LEED certification for approximately 1.85 million square feet of space, most recently gaining LEED BD+C NC v4.0/4.1 Platinum status for its impressive Harvey Milk Terminal 1 Boarding Area B and LEED BD+C NC v4 Gold accreditation for its Long Term Parking AirTrain Station.

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