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TERI GRIHA Rating System

Thursday 17 January 2008, by Deepa

TERI, being deeply committed to every aspect of sustainable development, has taken up itself the responsibility of acting as a driving force to popularize green building by developing a tool for measuring and rating a building’s environmental performance in the context of India’s varied climate and building practices. This tool, by its qualitative and quantitative assessment criteria, has been able to ‘rate’ a building on the degree of its ‘greenness’. The rating would be applied to new and existing building stock of varied functions – commercial, institutional, and residential. The rating system aims to achieve efficient resource utilization, enhanced resource efficiency, and better quality of life in the buildings.

The Indian building industry is highly decentralized, involving diverse stakeholders engaged in design, construction, equipment provision, installation, and renovation of buildings. Each group may be organized to some extent, but there is limited interaction among the groups, thus disabling the integrated green design and application process. Hence, it is very important to define and quantify sustainable building practices and their benefits. It is also imperative to delineate the role of each actor in ensuring that the building consumes minimal resources in its entire life cycle and leaves behind minimal environmental footprint. The role of TERI GRIHA would be to bridge this gap, by addressing to these above issues and to promote a sustainable future in the building sector.

TERI’s green building rating evaluates the environmental performance of a building holistically over its entire life cycle, thereby providing a definitive standard for what constitutes a ‘green building’. The rating system is a voluntary scheme that has been developed based on accepted energy and environmental principles and seeks to strike a balance between the established practices and emerging concepts, both nationally and internationally. Its structural development is a result of a thorough study and understanding of the current internationally accepted green building rating systems and the prevailing building practices in India. It has also derived useful inputs from the voluntary building codes/guidelines being developed by the Bureau of Energy Efficiency, the Ministry of Non-Conventional Energy Sources, MoEF (Ministry of Environment and Forests), Government of India and the Bureau of Indian Standards.

The guidelines/criteria for appraisal would be revised every three years to take into account the latest scientific developments during this period.

TERI-GRIHA’s green design practices, and the array of individual and institutional professionals who put these in practice, would be publicized and promoted to achieve the following goals.
- It has immense replication probability for ‘seeing is believing’.
- It motivates the user and the owner to fulfill their commitment to the environment by emulating the example it sets.
- It helps generate awareness on the concept of green building.
- It stimulates competition among peers to achieve the same performance or to endeavour to better it.

Currently the system has been developed to help ‘design and evaluate’ new buildings (buildings that are still at the inception stages). A building is assessed based on its predicted performance over its entire life cycle – inception through operation. The stages of the life cycle that have been identified for evaluation are the pre-construction, building design and construction, and building operation and maintenance stages. The issues that get addressed in these stages are as follows.
- Pre-construction stage (intra- and inter-site issues)
- Building planning and construction stages (issues of resource conservation and reduction in resource demand, resource utilization efficiency, resource recovery and reuse, and provisions for occupant health and well being). The prime resources that are considered in this section are land, water, energy, air, and green cover.
- Building operation and maintenance stage (issues of operation and maintenance of building systems and processes, monitoring and recording of consumption, and occupant health and well being, and also issues that affect the global and local environment).

For more information, please click on http://www.teriin.org/bcsd/griha/ratingsystem.htm