The Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens in Pennsylvania, USA is the first institute to achieve the International Well Building Institute's highest distinction. Photo credit: ecobuildingpulse.com

The WELL Building Standard now has strong backing in Canada after an agreement between the US-led Green Business Certification and the Canada Green Building Council.

WELL is a performance-based system for measuring, certifying and monitoring features that impact human health and wellbeing through air, water, nourishment, light, fitness, comfort and mind.

The new agreement will align the business and administrative processes in the US with the demands of the Canadian market.

Green Business Certification Incorporated president Mahesh Ramanujam said the agreement was an important next step in the development of better, healthier buildings.

A WELL building is measured on the above features.

“Just as Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design has transformed the building sector to address environmental accountability, WELL will further that vision by focusing deeply on the people in the buildings and providing developers and owners with a new way to account for health and human occupancy challenges,” Mr Ramanujam said.

WELL is grounded in a body of medical research that explores the connection between the buildings where humans spend more than 90 per cent of their time and the health and wellness of the people in them. It measures attributes of the built environment by looking at seven concepts and more than 100 features that address behaviour, design and operations.

Canada Green Building Council chief executive Thomas Mueller said his organisation had made a commitment to improving the environmental performance of buildings and homes and now it wanted to ensure that buildings provide a healthy and productive environment for occupants.

“The WELL Building Standard is a timely addition to (the council’s) programs, as health and wellness in the workplace is increasingly recognised as an important element in attracting and retaining employees,” Mr Mueller said.

WELL certification allows building owners and employers to know their space is performing as intended to support human health and wellness. WELL can be applied across all building types and is currently optimised for commercial and institutional projects.

See WELL Building Standard website for more information.