Saudi Arabia - The US Green Building Council (USGBC) has awarded King Abdullah Petroleum Studies and Research Center (Kapsarc) in Saudi Arabia five Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum certificates under the Existing Building: Operation and Maintenance (EBOM) – the highest in the LEED rating system.

Kapsarc’s facilities are the only buildings in the Kingdom to have achieved LEED-EBOM Platinum certification, said the Riyadh-based research institute in a statement.

The centre was awarded a rating of over 80 points.

Platinum LEED-EBOM certifications were awarded to five of Kapsarc's community buildings, which cover a total 52,284 sq m. The certificates were awarded for achieving the highest international sustainability standards across Kapsarc’s facility design, construction, operations, and maintenance procedures, it added.

All five certificates were obtained in 2021 and 2022 as a testament to Kapsarc’s commitment to environmental and sustainability stewardship.

In 2021, Kapsarc's waste management programme diverted 94 per cent of solid waste from landfill through rigorous waste stream audits that eliminated single-use goods and developed an effective waste segregation strategy across multiple stages.

During the same period, the centre reduced the compound's water consumption by 30 per cent by utilising advanced tools and techniques for indoor and outdoor water use, such as a weather-based irrigation system in conjunction with a micro-irrigation system, mulching, native plant planting, and efficient faucets. The centre’s energy usage was also reduced by 35 per cent due to its yearly energy audits, which regularly identified and implemented low-cost energy conservation measures, according to the institute.

Kapsarc’s modular hexagonal buildings were designed to have low carbon footprints during the Saudi summer season, which requires intensive air cooling.

Kapsarc President Fahad Alajlan commented: "This has been a remarkable building since its inception. And of course, behind every great facility is a great team. We realise these significant achievements would not be possible without the hard work of our facilities management team. This milestone reflects the centre’s dedication to climate conscious development and highlights the progress Kapsarc has achieved in working toward its sustainability goals."

Kapsarc was certified by the USGBC as the largest LEED Neighborhood Development project in the Middle East in 2017. In 2014 and 2016, it was awarded Platinum LEED New Design and Construction certifications. In 2012, the centre was certified LEED Gold for Homes, making it the first and largest project outside North America to have received such an accolade.

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