FAQ

FAQ

What is the International Living Future Institute?

The International Living Future Institute (ILFI) is a nonprofit working to build an ecologically-minded, restorative world for all people. Using principles of social and environmental justice, ILFI seeks to counter climate change by pushing for an urban environment free of fossil fuels. ILFI runs the Living Building Challenge, which is the world’s most rigorous green building standard, not to mention several other programs: the Living Product Challenge, the Living Community Challenge, and the Reveal, Declare and Just labels. These programs develop a green framework for living in a 21st-century world.

Where does building and construction fit into your vision?

The building and construction industries determine, by and large, how residents interpret their surroundings and built environment. As such, it is vital to re-engineer our cities and towns to correspond more directly to the natural landscapes they inhabit. By reconfiguring how we think of such spaces, architects, engineers, planners, and contractors can create buildings that generate their own energy, and wean buildings off the fossil fuel economy.

What is the Living Building Challenge?

The Living Building Challenge is the world’s most rigorous standard for green buildings. Going above and beyond LEED certification, Living Buildings strive for net-zero or net-positive energy, are free of toxic chemicals, and lower their energy footprint many times below the generic commercial structure.

To be certified under the Challenge, projects must meet a series of ambitious performance requirements over a minimum of 12 months of continuous occupancy. There are three (3) types of certification under the Challenge: Living Building Certification, Petal Certification or Net Zero Energy Building Certification.

What is the Living Product Challenge?

The Living Product Challenge takes the robust concepts of the Living Building Challenge and applies them to manufactured goods. Living Products are informed by biomimicry and biophilia, manufactured by processes powered only by renewable energy and within the water balance of the places they are made. The Living Product Challenge is comprised of seven performance categories, or “Petals”: Place, Water, Energy, Health & Happiness, Materials, Equity, and Beauty.

What is the Living Community Challenge?

The Living Community Challenge (LCC) creates a new era for community building and a new vision for urban design. It provides a holistic philosophy, advocacy tool and certification process for the vision plan, master plan, construction and evolution of a Living Community. The LCC scales up the innovations made by Living Buildings and Living Products, and envisions entire cities and regions as living entities. There are three levels of certification: Net Zero Energy, Petal and Living; and there are seven performance areas: Place, Water, Energy, Health and Happiness, Materials, Equity, and Beauty.

What is Reveal?

Reveal aims to make commercial buildings’ energy use more transparent by labeling their electricity consumption. The immediate goal is transparency, and projects do not need to have renewable energy. There is no minimum or maximum threshold for energy efficiency for projects. Reveal labels boost buildings’ visibility and sustainability profiles.

What is Declare?

Declare is an ingredients initiative for building products that is designed to shape a greener, healthier environment for construction workers, business employees, and customers alike. The Declare program labels goods with a full list of ingredients, and expands the transparency of the building market.

What is Just?

Like Reveal and Declare, Just is a transparency platform and disclosure tool.  JUST allows organizations the opportunity to publicly document and quantify their commitment to social equity in the workplace.

What is Just?

Like Reveal and Declare, Just is a transparency platform and disclosure tool.  JUST allows organizations the opportunity to publicly document and quantify their commitment to social equity in the workplace.

Why is a new version of the Living Building Challenge being released?

The Living Building Challenge is constantly evolving in response to feedback from our project teams, and progress in the design, construction, and manufacturing industries. LBC v3.1 makes the Challenge more achievable without sacrificing the rigor or intent of the program. In addition, it codifies new Exceptions and Clarifications resulting from the ongoing discourse within the project team community.

How do Just and Declare integrate with the Living Building Challenge?

Declare, the ingredients label for building products, is intended to make it easier for project teams to conduct research and for industry-leading manufacturers to advertise their commitment to materials health and transparency to a receptive audience. Project teams are advised to use Declare as the starting point when writing their specification. In addition, teams are required in Imperative 12 to include at least one Declare-labeled product per 500 square meters of their project’s gross building area, and advocate to a minimum of ten other manufacturers to join the program.

Just, the social justice label, is a platform for organizations and businesses to demonstrate their commitment to equity in the workplace. It is a valuable tool for self-assessment, driving continuous improvements for participating organizations. Just-labeled businesses have reported positive feedback from employees and clients alike. It is a requirement of Imperative 18, that at least one core contributing firm on the project have a JUST label, and that the project team advocates to at least ten other firms.

What does Net Positive mean?

Living Buildings must demonstrate that they have achieved Net Positive Energy, Net Positive Water, and Net Positive Waste. As a result, Living Buildings generate more energy than they consume. They harvest, use, and treat all the water that they require without burdening our aging municipal infrastructure. They actively seek not only to divert materials from the waste stream, but also to remove and salvage materials that would otherwise be destined for the landfill. In other words, Living Buildings are regenerative; in that they generate sufficient benefits to the building’s site, to the project’s community, and to the environment at large to offset any negative impacts that the project may incur.

Can LBC 2.1 projects upgrade to LBC 3.1?

Yes, any project that is already registered can choose to upgrade to 3.1. Teams may upgrade their entire project, or they may upgrade entire Petals. Teams may not upgrade individual Imperatives. There is no charge to upgrade.

When can projects start registering for LBC 3.1?

As of December 31, 2016 projects may no longer register for LBC 3.0. All subsequent registrations will be for LBC 3.1.

How long do projects already registered under LBC 2.1 and LBC 3.0 have to certify?

Certification for LBC 2.x projects will sunset on December 31, 2019. There is currently no sunset date established for LBC 3.x projects.

What are the major changes in the v3.1 Standard?

To familiarize yourself with the changes between v3.0 and v3.1, please see pages 19-20 the v3.1 Standard.

How can I find out more about LBC 3.1?

Please subscribe to our newsletter and visit our Upcoming Education page for information on our scheduled appearances around the nation. Alternatively, you may contact your local ILFI Ambassadors to request that they conduct an education session at your firm. There is no charge for Ambassador presentations.

Why did you make a separate program for Living Communities?

Including a Neighborhood Typology within the Living Building Challenge meant that neighborhoods and communities were subject to the same requirements as buildings. The Institute has found that these requirements do not adequately address the unique challenges, constraints, and opportunities inherent to development at a community scale. To learn more, please visit the Living Community Challenge webpage or contact lcc.support@living-future.org

How many projects are registered with the Living Building Challenge?

As of May 2017, there are nearly 380 registered Living Building Challenge projects in 23 countries around the world. There are 73 certified projects; 15 have achieved Living Certification, 25 have received Petal Certification, and 33 have achieved Net Zero Energy Building Certification (or Zero Energy Certification). Please visit our registered project map and our certified project case studies page for more information.

To what scale of projects does the Living Community Challenge apply?

The following criteria shall be met to register for the LCC:

  1. Diversity of Uses: Access to the essential components of livability (places to: eat, sleep, work, play, and where services are provided)
  2. Multiple Buildings
  3. At Least One Multi-Modal Street
  4. Shared Infrastructure (energy, water, streets) is optional, but an indicator of LCC projects

Projects that do not meet criteria 1 through 3 are encouraged to pursue the Living Building Challenge.

What is different about the Living Community Challenge?

The LCC uses the same structure as the LBC: 7 petals and 20 Imperatives. Imperatives have been adapted to the Community Scale, while others have been substituted for new Imperatives that are more relevant to the Community Scale.

How does the new Living Future Habitat Exchange program work?

The Living Future Habitat Exchange aggregates funds from participating teams in order to make a more substantial annual purchase of high-value, intact ecosystem in partnership with the Wildlife Conservation Society. This partnership results in lower costs per acre to project teams while simultaneously protecting large swaths of contiguous acreage, protecting critical habitat in perpetuity.

What will it cost me to certify a project through the Living Building Challenge?

For all certifications, prices vary based on the Typology, gross building area, and type of project. There are two points of payment: registration and certification. LBC registration is a flat, non-refundable and non-transferable fee of $900. Premium Membership of at least one project member, ($150 annual dues), is required to register a project. Certification costs can be found on the Certification Details page.

How many Living Building Challenge Projects have been certified?

Current information about our certified projects is available on our Case Study page.

How was the Red List developed?

The Materials Red List is intended to identify and eliminate the worst in class chemicals and materials from a human and ecological health standpoint (across the lifecycle) from the built environment. There are certainly many other items that also pose concerns, but these were evaluated from a perspective of the potential for the building industry itself to significantly curb if not eliminate items from manufacturing. The Institute worked with the Healthy Building Network to identify the current Red List – you can find a wealth of information about different items on the List on their website.

How does the Living Building Challenge interact with LEED®?

The Living Building Challenge was endorsed by both the US Green Building Council and the Canada Green Building Council in 2006. The standard is in no way meant to compete with the LEED® Green Building Rating System, the USGBC, the CaGBC, or other international LEED systems. The International Living Future Institute views the Living Building Challenge as an additional outlet to promote the goals set by the USGBC and CaGBC – it establishes a vision for a project’s environmental and social responsibilities from a new vantage point. It is our sincere hope that the ideas captured in the Living Building Challenge will influence program and project outcomes towards greater ecological benefit and that this standard provides additional unifying power for our organizations.

What is the Living Building Challenge’s relationship with the Cascadia Green Building Council?

The Living Building Challenge is a program initially launched by the Cascadia Green Building Council (a chapter of both the US Green Building Council and Canada Green Building Council). The International Living Building Institute was created of and by CGBC in May 2009 to oversee the Living Building Challenge and its auxiliary programs. In April 2011, the International Living Building Institute was renamed the International Living Future Institute and became the umbrella organization for both the Living Building Challenge and the Cascadia Green Building Council.

How do I get more involved with the Living Building Challenge?

If you’re inspired by the Living Future Challenges and would like to help spread the word in your local community, we encourage you to visit the Take Action section of our website. Here you can find over 700 Ambassadors in well over 40 nation states. These individuals make up the Living Future Network, which meets monthly online as a group to continue to create change, and locally in-person in groups called Collaboratives. If you’re interested in exposing new audiences in your area to the restorative principles of the Living Future Challenges, please consider volunteering as a trained Ambassador Presenter or a Collaborative Facilitator of a local Collaborative.

To meet the Network and fully experience the energy, inspiration and action behind the Living Building Challenge, the Institute and its global network of Ambassadors; nothing beats our annual unConference, Living Future.

What is the Ambassador Network and how can I participate?

The Living Future Network is a global society of advanced practitioners created and managed by the Institute. Its goal is to support the rapid and widespread adoption of restorative principles throughout the building industry using a unified and coherent voice guided by the Living Future Challenges. We recognize that the effort necessary to create a future that is Socially Just, Culturally Rich and Ecologically Restorative is both fundamental and enormous. The quality of the material aspects of our communities – the buildings, sidewalks, streets and parks – reflects our progress toward these goals. As each of us inhabits the built environment, each of us contributes to its physiology.  As it relates to the Living Future Challenges directly, volunteers in the Ambassador Network help broaden the Institute’s base of knowledge, connections and support; as an Ambassador Presenter, you are an essential contributor to the realization of the organization’s goals.

The Institute’s global Living Future Network offers:

An array of opportunities for individuals to learn and take simple actions, ranging from online discussion groups to tools for writing advocacy letters and platforms for displaying your creativity. A publicly accessible online network will encourage people around the world to connect, interact and share ideas, resources and strategies.

Training and support for individuals who wish to form Living Future Challenge Collaboratives, local groups focused on informal opportunities for education and action. Learn more about this role and apply to become a Collaborative Facilitator.

Training and support for presenters, individuals with advanced expertise, who wish to introduce their colleagues and peers to the Living Future Challenges. These volunteers will deliver informal, introductory presentations to local organizations, companies and community groups. Learn more about this role and apply to become an Ambassador Presenter.

When will Ambassadors be able to present the new programs?

The new presentation will be available to them at no cost once they have completed the LBC 3.0 webinar series or in-person workshop, and after signing a one-year volunteer agreement.

To request a presentation from a local ambassador, please email: ambassador@Living-future.org

Is the Living Building Challenge a competition?

No, Living Building Challenge takes its name from its level of rigor and does not include any sort of contest. Projects can be certified as “Living” if they demonstrate that they meet all of the program requirements after 12 months of continued operations and full occupancy. It is also possible to achieve Petal Certification for achieving all of the requirements of at least three Petals when at least one of the following Petals are is included: Water, Energy and/or Materials.

What are the benefits to pursuing the Living Product Challenge?

The Living Product Challenge is the most advanced sustainability standard for products, and can help any company make greater strides, whether they are at the beginning, or far along their sustainability journey. Pursuing the Living Product Challenge not only helps companies improve and evolve the sustainability of their own company and products, it’s also a powerful platform for communicating with and connecting to consumers.

Do I have to pursue all of the Imperatives?

The Living Product Challenge is designed to allow manufacturers to engage with the program, even if they cannot yet pursue all of the Imperatives.

  • Imperative Certification requires that manufacturers acheive 7 imperatives, including 4 core imperatives
  • Petal Certification requires that manufacturers achieve all of the requirements of at least 3 Petals, and at least one Petal must be: Water, Energy and/or Materials
  • Full Certification requires achievement of all Imperatives

What’s the Difference between Declare and the LPC?

Declare is a single-attribute ingredients label for products that looks one critical aspect of sustainability—material health. The Living Product Challenge is a comprehensive third party verified program that takes a multi-attribute approach to sustainability.

How does this compare to other third party multi-attribute standards like Cradle to Cradle and BIFMA?

The Living Product Challenge was developed in collaboration with a number of other sustainability standard including the Health Product Declaration, Cradle to Cradle, GreenScreen for Safer Chemicals, and BIFMA Level, through ongoing harmonization efforts.

The Living Product Challenge is the first standard based upon the principles of full transparency to incorporate both Life Cycle Analysis and material health evaluation in order to create products that are Net Positive across their life cycle.

The LPC is the first standard based upon the principles of full transparency to incorporate both LCA and material health evaluation in order to create products that are net positive across their life cycle.

What will it cost me to certify my product through the Living Product Challenge?

The certification fee for the Living Future Institute is between $5 and $15,000 depending upon the complexity of the product and the level of certification desired. Companies may need to invest in additional sustainability upgrades, or research and analysis, depending on how much sustainability work has already been done.

Both discounts and limited financing are available for innovative start-ups or small companies. Get in contact with us directly at lpc.support@living-future.org to learn more.

Who conducts the third party certification for the program?

The Living Product Challenge engages an Ecosystem of leading sustainability consultants that act as third party certifiers. These companies include GreenCircle Certified, TerraGenesis, WAP Sustainability, SCS Global Services and Likolab.

Do I have to engage the Institute to participate in LPC or can I complete the certification myself?

During the pilot phase, companies need to engage directly with the ILFI, as well as a third party certifier.

How long will the program be in pilot phase?

The pilot phase will run through 2017.

What is Handprinting?

The Living Product Challenge calls on manufacturers to not only reduce their negative impact but also measure and maximize their positive impacts on the world. Handprinting is a philosophy and methodology for quantifying positive impacts vs. business as usual. It is an innovative and unique part of the Living Product Challenge Program. For more information about Handprinting and some case studies, we have published a Handprinting Guide below.

How often do you have to re-certify?

Certification lasts for 2 years, at which time manufacturers must re-certify their product.

What does it mean for a product to be behind Net Positive?

A Net Positive product is one that gives more than it takes across its entire life cycle in an impact category. It can be measured on multiple impact dimensions including energy, water, carbon. Within the Living Product Challenge, a product that has a Handprint that is demonstrably larger than its footprint is considered Net Positive.

What types of products can pursue the Living Product Challenge?

The Living Product Challenge is open to any manufactured good, which includes, but is not limited to: building products, consumer goods, textiles, electronics, food, personal care and cleaning products.

Prior to the launch of the Living Community Challenge at Living Future 2014, the Institute engaged with community-scaled projects in a number of ways. In 2010, the Institute held the Living City Design Competition, which inspired dozens of visions from around the world of what a Living City might look like. Since the Competition, the Institute has worked with a number of communities to apply Living Building principles to the neighborhood and city scale – communities we initially called “Pilot Cities” – and in some cases is evolved into registered Living Communities.

We have also developed the Living Community Patterns to help practitioners, politicians, and community members implement LCC principles in their neighborhoods. Within the first few years of the program launch, we’ve seen the first communities register for the LCC, and we continue to work with project teams around the globe to use the Challenge to help their community realize its vision.

SHOULD I REGISTER MY PROJECT FOR THE LIVING BUILDING CHALLENGE OR THE LIVING COMMUNITY CHALLENGE?

The Living Building Challenge best serves single buildings but is also appropriate for multiple buildings with the same owner who can combine the buildings’ infrastructure needs through Scale Jumping.

The following criteria shall be met to register for the LCC:

  1. Diversity of Uses: Access to the essential components of livability (places to: eat, sleep, work, play, and where services are provided)
  2. Multiple Buildings
  3. At Least One Multi-Modal Street
  4. Shared Infrastructure (energy, water, streets) is optional, but an indicator of LCC projects

Projects that do not meet criteria 1 through 3 are encouraged to pursue the Living Building Challenge.

WHAT IS DIFFERENT ABOUT THE LIVING COMMUNITY CHALLENGE?

The LCC uses the same structure as the LBC: 7 petals and 20 Imperatives. Imperatives have been adapted to the Community scale, while others have been substituted for new Imperatives that are more relevant to the Community scale.

 

The Living Community Challenge Standard and Handbook

View the latest versions of the free Living Community Challenge Standard and Handbook.

Reports

The Institute has prepared reports on some of the projects that are in the process of carrying out the Living Community Challenge. These reports provide an array of tools and strategies to help any project achieve the Petals and Imperatives of the LCC.

Registered & Exploratory Communities

Our Pilot Cities work has been the initial proving ground of the Living Community Challenge. In each community, a varied array of analyses, visioning, forums, and charrettes were conducted to investigate Living Future principles at the neighborhood and city scales.

Living Community Challenge Resources

Learn more about the Living Community Challenge and help share spread the word. You can download the LCC Standard, Handbook and see additional materials here.

What is Renewable Energy?

Renewable Energy is power generated from resources like the sun, wind, water and earth. Renewable energy for a ZEB project is produced through solar/photovoltaics, wind turbines, water-powered microturbines and geothermal energy.

What’s not allowed in a Zero Energy Building?

Fossil fuel combustion and nuclear power, which are not considered renewable energy. With some limited exceptions, combustion is prohibited. For more ways to generate renewable power and specific requirements, please look at the Energy Petal Handbook.

Why should you certify your building as Zero Energy?

Since the Institute’s Zero Energy Building Certification™ is based on actual performance data, and not an energy model, it verifies that your building is performing as you’d expect.  ILFI ZEB certification gives your project a stamp of approval from one of the world’s most prestigious sustainability organizations and helps maintain integrity of the zero energy ideal.  To support this integrity, the ILFI draws only from ZE projects pursuing or achieving ZEB certification for its own case studies, education, publications and books.  ILFI certification brings your project into the larger ILFI ecosystem – let us amplify the story of your project to the world.

What buildings qualify for Zero Energy Building Certification?

Nearly any building can be certified: new or already operational, anywhere in the world. As stated above, buildings which include combustion are prohibited, with some limited exceptions. To evaluate the specifics of your project, please contact ZE.Support@living-future.org.

How is ZEB related to the Living Building Challenge?

The ILFI ZEB certification draws from the Living Building Challenge, and is a highly rigorous and regarded standard in its own right. You are encouraged to pursue additional Imperatives toward Petal Recognition or Living status.

Is Scale Jumping allowed?

Yes. The Institute acknowledges that the ideal scale for solutions is not always within a building’s property boundary. Depending on the technological solution, the optimal scale can vary when considering environmental impact, first cost and operating costs. Scale Jumping is an overlay in the Living Building Challenge that allows multiple projects to operate in a cooperative state – sharing infrastructure as appropriate and allowing for fulfillment of requirements as elegantly and efficiently as possible.

What is Reveal?

Reveal is an energy efficiency performance label for your building.

Eligibility 

All building types and projects are eligible for Reveal. Reveal is a simple, easy tool to communicate your building’s energy efficiency profile. All energy sources are eligible (including those based on combustion), and projects do not need to have renewable energy. There is no minimum or maximum threshold for energy efficiency for projects. Submit your Reveal building today! Reveal your building’s energy.

Submission of your building to Reveal is the first step. The registration cost is $750.00 (US). Reveal submissions are only available to ILFI or Cascadia Members. Already a member? Click here to submit your building project. Your submission will need to include a short list of general project information, energy consumption data and, if provided, production from renewable energy information.

Once the building is submitted, the Institute staff will review your submission, they’ll reach out if they have any questions.

From there, Institute staff will determine the project’s Energy Use Intensity (EUI), comparison with an appropriate baseline, and any percentage of renewable energy production (if applicable). Your project data is then turned into a Reveal label for your communication, education and promotion.

Each Reveal label is good for two years and is eligible for renewal with new project energy information.

Contact reveal@living-future.org for more information.

What is Energy Use Intensity?

Energy Use Intensity (EUI) is a metric which measures and compares energy use within and between buildings. Different regions and countries use different specific units, including kbtu/square feet/year, kwh/square meter/year, and kwh/square feet/year, and so it is important to understand what specific units are being used. Reveal typically uses kbtu/square feet/year as a baseline, but can provide labels with different values depending on location and project need.

What is Declare?

Declare is an ingredients initiative for building products that is designed to shape a greener, healthier environment for construction workers, business employees, and customers alike. The Declare program labels goods with a full list of ingredients, and expands the transparency of the building market.

Where can I view published Declare labels?

All published Declare labels can be viewed on the Declare Database.

What does a product’s Declaration Status symbolize?

Red List Free: Red List Free products are 100% disclosed and do not contain any Red List ingredients. They have been shown to meet emissions testing criteria, if applicable, and meet the Materials requirements of the Living Building Challenge.

LBC Compliant: LBC Compliant labels meet the written requirements of the Living Building Challenge, but rely on one or more Exceptions to demonstrate compliance. Labels are, at minimum, 99% disclosed and/or may contain one or more Red List ingredients that fall under an existing, published LBC Exception. They have been shown to meet emissions testing criteria, if applicable, and meet the Materials requirements of the Living Building Challenge.

Declared: Declared labels are 100% disclosed, but contain one or more Red List ingredients that are not covered by an existing exception. Additionally, applicable products that do not meet emissions testing criteria are considered Declared. Declared labels require additional product research and vetting to locate a fully compliant product before the Declared product may be used on a Living Building Challenge project.

How can I tell if a Declare label is LEEDv4 compliant?

Declare labels with ingredient disclosure to 99.9% meet the LEED v4 Material Ingredient credit requirements. The LEEDv4 filter on the Declare Database allows users to easily filter LEED compliant products.

All products with a Declaration Status of Red List Free and Declared are 100% disclosed; LBC Compliant labels disclosing a minimum of 99.9% may also be used by LEED project teams.

How long is a Declare label active?

Declare labels are active for 12 months, after which they must be renewed. To renew a label, the manufacturer must confirm there have been no chemistry changes to the products since the original label was issued and pay the renewal fee.

As a product manufacturer, what is the first step to Declaring my product?

Manufacturers can create an ILFI Membership account and access the Online Manufacturer Dashboard to complete the Product Declaration Form. Product Declaration Forms are submitted to ILFI staff for review, label drafting, and publishing.

What resources are available for Declare manufacturers?

The Declare web page includes multiple resources for product manufacturers and product specifiers including: the Declare Manufacturers Guide, detailed Declare FAQs, Red List CASRN listing, and detailed descriptions of Red List chemicals and their human/environmental health concerns.

I am interested in Declaring my product, but I have some questions before I get started. Who should I contact?

The ILFI Materials Team is available to answer your questions and provide customer support. Please email us at: declare.support@living-future.org.

Who owns and operates the JUST Program?

The JUST Program is a program of the International Living Future Institute (ILFI), a leading global think-tank dedicated to the transformation of society to a world that is socially just, culturally rich and ecologically restorative.

Who can participate in the JUST Program?

The program is open to all types of organizations including, but not limited to, for-profit businesses, non-profits, educational institutions, government agencies, public and privately traded companies, trade unions, cooperative businesses and family-owned businesses anywhere in the world. If an organization has five or more employees – they are eligible to apply for the JUST Label.

What are the goals of the JUST Program?

The JUST goals are:

  • to elevate the discussion around social justice in all organizations,
  • to create a common language for social justice issues,
  • to elevate the causes of those individuals who lead on these issues,
  • to change the policies and practices of thousands of organizations worldwide, and
  • to make life better for people from all walks of life.

What is the cost to register for the JUST Program?

There is an initial $100 USD fee to register your organization on the JUST website. Once your organization has submitted the registration fee, you will be able to begin uploading policies and data for each of the indicators.

Once your organization has completed the data submission process and wishes to receive the JUST Label, the JUST Program Fee is due. The Program Fee is based on number of full time employees. The JUST Label is valid for two years after publication. Organizations can update and renew their JUST Label fee at any time up to the expiration date, for a renewal fee which is set at 50% of the JUST Program Fee. The updated JUST Label will also be valid for two years from date of publication.

Who can I contact to discuss the JUST Program?

Contact us and a staff member will get back to you as soon as possible.

What is the minimum number of indicators that an organization must provide information on in order to receive a JUST Label?

An organization can choose to opt out of a maximum of three indicators but no more than one indicator in any one of the six categories. The International Living Future Institute highly recommends that all organizations submits policies and data for all indicators to meet the spirit and intent of the program.

Why should an organization register for the JUST Program?

The JUST Program demonstrates an organization’s commitment to social justice and equity issues. By applying for JUST, organizations can make meaningful changes in human resource and operational policies and practices. After completion of the application process, the organization’s JUST Label can be displayed on their website, internal communications, annual reports, corporate social responsibility reports, posters and in marketing materials to show commitment and public transparency on these issues.

When does an organization become certified as a JUST organization?

The JUST Label does not constitute an endorsement, verification, or certification from the International Living Future Institute. Instead, the JUST Label is granted solely through our permission and reflects the integrity and transparency of the organization that submitted its information on the social justice indicators. Organizations may not use the JUST label without registering, posting all information in our publicly viewable database, and paying the applicable program fee.

When can an organization uses the JUST label?

An organization can use the JUST Label after it provides all of the required information for the JUST Program, pays the registration and program fee, and receives confirmation of use from the Institute.

When can an organization update it’s JUST Program information?

An organization can and should update any of its information with the JUST Program on an ongoing basis so it is current, and accurately reflects its involvement in the JUST Label social justice and equity indicators. An organization must pay a renewal fee when the JUST Label has been updated to reflect current policies and organizational data. The JUST Label must be updated at a minimum of two years from the date of initial publication. A JUST organization can choose to renew their Label more frequently than on a two year cycle.

Where is an organization’s JUST Program information kept?

All of an organization’s submitted information is maintained in the JUST Program’s secure publicly viewable database. It is important to understand that the label is merely the summary of performance. In the spirit of transparency, all submitted information is posted in viewable but non-editable format. Because the JUST website is viewable by all, organizations are asked not to submit any confidential or sensitive information.

When can a JUST label be revoked?

Use of the JUST label can be revoked for any reason and at any time by ILFI. That said, ILFI does not intend to revoke labels unless there is substantive reasons to do so. Typically these reasons include:

  1. Information that clarifies that information provided is patently false or inaccurate.
  2. Use of the JUST Label that is in conflict with our branding and marketing guidelines for fair use of the label.

What are the registration procedures?

An organization wishing to participate in the JUST Program must:

  1. Create a new account with a User Name, Email and Password.
  2. Activate your account by linking to the site provided by the Institute via a confirmation email.
  3. Accept the terms and conditions of the JUST Program.

Once you have completed the account setup process, you can begin to preview the JUST website. Once you are ready to begin uploading policies and data to the JUST website, you will need to submit a $100 USD registration fee.

What is the documentation process?

  1. Once officially registered, the organization can upload to the JUST Program all of the required information for each indicator. The required information is referenced in the JUST Program Manual found on the JUST website. Information must be complete in order to receive a label.
  2. The Institute will permit organizations to opt out of a maximum of three indicators but only one indicator per category.
  3. All information must be given in a non-personal format without directly identifying individuals and sensitive information and thereby respecting privacy and confidentiality.
  4. The Institute will confirm if the submitted information merits a JUST Label and at what scores. The institute will inform the organization accordingly. The organization may still choose to opt out at this point, although registration fees are not refundable.

What are the posting protocols?

  1. All information will be publicly viewable in non-editable format as a component of the JUST Program. Each JUST organization will have a listing on our database.
  2. Prior to its posting on the JUST website, the organization will have the right to verify and sign off on the accuracy of the information.
  3. Once the organization verifies the information, the Institute will post the organization’s JUST Label and complete information on its publicly viewable database.

What are the guidelines for the use of the JUST Label?

  1. The JUST Label does not constitute an endorsement, verification, or certification from the Institute and cannot be marketed or communicated as such.
  2. Organizations can use the JUST Label on their website or marketing materials to demonstrate their commitment to social justice in the workplace.
  3. ILFI reserves the right to revoke the posting or use of the JUST Label by any organization at any time for any reason.

Number of Employees Fee
5 - 25 $500
25 - 50 $1,000
50 - 100 $2,000
100 - 500 $3,500
500 - 1,000 $5,000
1,000 - 5,000 $10,000
5,000 - 10,000 $15,000
10,000 + $25,000

Why should I join?
A membership at the Institute supports your professional development and announces your commitment to creating a Living Future. Together, our members are advancing critical knowledge, strengthening you local green building community and supporting the transformation to a Living Future.

How can I access the online Living Building Challenge dialogue?
Only active members of registered project teams can access the online dialogue. The petal Handbooks combine all relevant dialogue posts for each Petal and will be updated with new posts periodically. If you experience difficulty accessing or posting to the Dialogue, please contact lbc.support@living-future.org.

Why are you charging for Petal Handbooks?
We now have a full suite of v3.0 and v3.1 Petal Handbooks for the Living Building Challenge that offer a significant resource for project teams and others. In order to support the expansion of the program and systems to support it we need to charge for the Petal Handbooks.

Can my company become a member?
No, but your company can purchase a corporate membership with a block of individual premium memberships and additional company-wide benefits.

How much does it cost?
The price for premium membership is $150. We offer a discounted basic membership with limited registration access and without discounts to our event discounts.

If I become an Institute member, do I also become a member of the USGBC?
No. The USGBC is a separate organization with a separate membership program.

How long does my membership last?
Institute membership lasts for one year from the date of purchase.

I am unemployed and I can’t afford a basic membership. Can you help me?
Yes! Please send an email to membership@living-future.org and we will work with you.

I still have questions. What should I do?
Send an email to membership@living-future.org and our membership team can help you out!

We’d love to hear from you.

+Contact Us