The Bank of America recently gave the U.S. Green Building Council $500,000 to support LEED certification of 15 U.S. cities and communities. USGBC will use the funds to provide financial assistance, educational resources and technical support to the jurisdictions while they pursue LEED certification. 

Last year, USGBC and Bank of America launched the LEED for Cities and Communities grant program. There were six participating cities.

LEED, which stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, is the world’s most widely used green building rating system. Earlier this year, USGBC released the newest version of the program, LEED v4.1. U.S. cities and communities that will benefit from the 2019 grants are the first to pursue LEED v4.1 certification.

The cities are Albuquerque; Baltimore; Birmingham; Bloomington, Ind.; Cincinnati; Greensboro, N.C.; Las Vegas; Miami; Orange County, N.Y.; Orlando; Pueblo County, Colo.; Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.; Royal Oak, Mich.; Santa Fe., N.M.; and Shaker Heights, Ohio.

Helps Local Governments

LEED helps local governments develop and track plans for a wide variety of factors, including green infrastructure, public health, energy, social equity, transportation and more.

More than 90 cities and communities globally have already been certified through the LEED for Cities and Communities programs.

Bank of America has 19 million sq ft of its own LEED-certified workspace, including more than 200 LEED-certified financial centers.

The bank previously supported USGBC’s Affordable Green Neighborhoods Program, which provided assistance to eligible nonprofit and public-sector developers of affordable housing. Since 2011, it has given USGBC a total of $2.5 million in grants for various programs.