Sustainability Accreditations: BREEAM

Since the 1990s, BREEAM is the world’s leading science-based suite of validation and certification systems for a sustainably built environment. Owned by BRE, an organisation with over 100 years of building science and research background, the BREEAM systems assess performance at every stage, from design, construction, use and refurbishment.

How does it work?

A licensed BREEAM assessor will give a third-party assessment on the environmental and sustainability performance according to the schemes requirements. The framework they use will be adapted to the location; to deliver projects to a high-performing and sustainable standard, support commercial success, and create positive environmental and social impact.

BREEAM supports solutions to several issues, detailed below.

Net zero carbon

The built environment plays a pivotal role in achieving net zero carbon by 2050 and avoiding 1.5 degrees warming. BREEAM both minimises and provides 3rd-party verified assessments for carbon emissions, by encouraging the use of onsite renewables.

Whole life performance

In today’s world, design teams consider the whole life performance of a building. BREEAM technical standards facilitates a whole journey through the lifecycle, by assessing every impact: environmental, social and economic. This helps identify gaps between the design intents and operational performance of a building, allowing organisations to continuously improve, and balance their sustainability goals.

Health and social impacts

BREEAM contributes to the long-term economic growth, health and wellbeing, and resilience of communities by Ensuring things like ventilation, visual comfort and air quality are addressed, by assessing them based on scientifically-backed methods.

Circularity and resilience

It is vital to ensure that we are supporting a future where our reliance on finite resources is reduced. BREEAM accreditations encourage durable designs in which materials are responsibly sourced, the water and energy consumption is reduced, and there are suitable methods of waste reduction.


The built environment industry needs to become a source of recovery. This is vital to reverse the damage that has already been done. BREEAM develops transparent and ethical strategies to both protect and restore nature, that are aligned with initiatives such as the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Disclosures and reporting

Through transparent and flexible reporting methods, BREEAM provides stakeholders with the information and insights they need to inform decisions and achieve their sustainability goals, and provides third-party verification and assurance of your organisations’ sustainability claims, that is mapped alongside UN SDGs.

EU Taxonomy

The EU Taxonomy us a detailed classification system which defines environmentally sustainable economic activities. Which BRE has committed to act on, so that clients can save time, money, and fulfil their sustainability goals.

Read our other blogs on sustainability