BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method) seeks to minimise the adverse effects of buildings (new build and refurbishment) on the environment. It also aims to enable developments to be recognised according to their environmental benefits; provide a credible, environmental label for buildings; and to stimulate demand for environmentally sustainable buildings.



The BREEAM New Construction scheme can be used to assess the environmental life cycle impacts of new non-domestic buildings at the design and construction stages. “New Construction” is defined as development that results in a new standalone structure or new extension to an existing structure, which will come into operation for a first time upon completion. A variety of non-domestic buildings can be assessed.


Fit-out and refurbishment

The BREEAM Fit-out and Refurbishment can be used to assess the environmental life cycle impacts of existing non-domestic buildings at the refurbishment and fit-out stages. The definition of ‘refurbishment’ encompasses a wide range of works to improve the performance, function and overall condition of an existing building. ‘Fit-out’ also encompasses a wide range of works, however it is more associated with internal works to the building including the first fit-out of a newly constructed building or re-fitting an existing building.

The BREEAM UK Non-domestic Refurbishment and Fit-out 2014 scheme provides a modular set of criteria that are applied depending upon the scope of works for a particular project type including:

Part 1: Fabric and Structure

Part 2: Core Services

Part 3: Local Services

Part 4: Interior Design

The scheme is split into these assessment parts to allow the scheme to reflect the aspects of a building that are tenant or landlord responsibilities, as well as the varied life cycle stages that each component or element is upgraded.


BREEAM Accredited Professional

The BREEAM Accredited Professional (AP) will assist to facilitate the effective design and creation of sustainable buildings by providing key input throughout the design process and help to achieve the required BREEAM score by facilitating the design team’s effort to successfully schedule activities, set priorities and negotiate trade-offs.  An AP also provides expert advice to the design team based on environmental sustainability, design and assessment. Also up to three BREEAM credits are awarded if BREEAM AP is involved with the project at early stages of design for new construction and fit out and refurbishment projects.


Accredited Professional vs. Assessor

AP Role:

  • Facilitate the creation of a great building
  • Highest BREEAM rating possible
  • Involvement needed early on (RIBA Stage 1)

Assessors Role:

  • Gather information
  • Assessing the information gathered
  • Compare with compliance requirements
  • Write report and submit to BRE Global
  • Not necessarily about getting a high score or creating a great building


BREEAM Communities

BREEAM for Communities is an independent, third party assessment and certification standard based on the established BREEAM methodology. It addresses key environmental, social and economic sustainability objectives and planning policy requirements that have an impact on proposed development projects within the built environmental. Credits are awarded in eight categories according their performance against defined sustainability objectives and planning policy requirements.  These credits like in all BREEAM schemes are then added together to produce a single overall score on a scale of Pass, Good, Very Good, Excellent and Outstanding.