• A-1: How is GBI different from other rating systems such as LEED or GREENSTAR?

      A: GBI is designed specifically for the tropical climate (hot and humid) and Malaysia’s current social, infrastructure and economic development. Singapore’s GREENMARK is another green rating tool developed for the tropics but it addresses specifically the priorities and needs of Singapore.

    • A-2: When should I start to consider Green Certification for my new building?

      A: You should consider Green Certification from the moment you start your project. This will enable you to optimize the strategic planning of your project, reduce costs and maximize returns on your investment. Incorporating green building features during a project's design stage ensures that the fullest range of possible strategies are available.

    • A-3: How do I get my building assessed and certified?

      A: Submit a completed GBI Application Form that can be downloaded from the GBI website. Then pay the applicable registration fee. You may wish to appoint a GBI Facilitator to provide professional services for the project. The GBI Facilitator’s role is to work with your consultant team to ensure that your building achieves the desired level of GBI rating. The Facilitator will then prepare the necessary submissions to GBI for assessment.

    • A-4: Is it compulsory for all new buildings to be GBI certified??

      A: GBI is voluntary and not a statutory requirement (unless specifically stipulated by individual Local Authority). However, in the light that buildings do contribute significantly to green house gas emissions over its long life span, all buildings should seek to be green certified. The benefits are many including operational cost savings and a better working environment for all.

    • A-5: Who operates GBI and who issues the certification?

      A: GBI is a profession driven initiative developed by Pertubuhan Akitek Malaysia (PAM) and the Association of Consulting Engineers Malaysia (ACEM). It has the support of all the professional institutes, relevant government agencies and the building/property industry. Greenbuildingindex Sdn Bhd (a wholly owned subsidiary of PAM and ACEM) operates GBI. An independent panel comprising senior professionals make-up the GBI Accreditation Panel (GBIAP). The GBIAP is responsible for issuing all GBI certifications.

    • A-6: How can I check if a building is GBI certified or not?

      A: A register of GBI certified buildings is available on the GBI website for the public to check and verify all claims of GBI certification.

    • A-7: How much more will it cost to make my building green enough to be certified?

      A: GBI’s data collated over the past 6 years are consistent with data of other global Green Rating Tools on cost increment for going green, which range from 0% (basic Certified level) to around 6% or more (highest Platinum level).

    • A-8: What are the benefits of a GBI certified building?

      A: GBI certification gives you a measurable assessment of how “green” or sustainable your building is. The benefits of Green Buildings include:

      1. Green buildings are designed to save energy and resources, recycle materials and minimise the emission of toxic substances throughout its life cycle.

      2. Green buildings harmonise with the local climate, traditions, culture and the surrounding environment.

      3. Green buildings are able to sustain and improve the quality of human life whilst maintaining the capacity of the ecosystem at local and global levels.

      4. Green buildings make efficient use of resources, have significant operational savings and increases workplace productivity.

      5. Building green sends the right message about a company or organisation – that it is well run, responsible, and committed to the future.

    • A-9: I want to start marketing my green building. How can GBI help?

      A: GBI rating involves two stages of certification. When you submit your design for assessment, we will carry out a Design Assessment. Your rating will be determined and you will be issued a provisional GBI rating certificate at the design stage. You may then use this provisional GBI certificate for marketing and promotion. Your provisional certificate will also be recorded in the Register of GBI accredited buildings for the public to verify. Upon completion of the building, a Completion & Verification Assessment will be carried out. This process will extend up to 12 months after the building's completion or upon the building reaching not less than 50% occupancy (whichever is earlier), to confirm the final certification rating of your building.

    • A-10: How does GBI help make my building more “green”?

      A: GBI provides an assessable differentiation to promote environment-friendly buildings. Achieving points in targeted areas means that the building will likely be more environment-friendly than those that do not address these critical issues. Under the GBI assessment framework, points are awarded for achieving and incorporating environment-friendly features that are above current industry practice. In addition GBI is a benchmarking rating system that incorporates the latest internationally recognised best practices in environmental design and performance.

    • A-11: How do I go about this? How does it work?

      A: Building owners, developers and consultants can apply for GBI assessment via submission of an Application Form and payment of the requisite registration fee to Greenbuildingindex Sdn Bhd (GSB). Applicants may then choose to appoint an accredited GBI Facilitator to provide professional services or identify their own Project Coordinator for this role. The assessment process starts during the project's design stage with a Design Assessment (DA) leading to the award of a provisional GBI rating certificate. This is followed by a Completion & Verification Assessment (CVA) which is undertaken 12 months after the building's completion or upon the building reaching not less than 50% occupancy (whichever is earlier). For both the DA and CVA, GSB assigns an accredited GBI Certifier to assess the project. The Certifier’s reports are then forwarded to the GBI Accreditation Panel (GBIAP) to approve and award the final certifications. To retain their GBI certification, buildings require re-assessment every three years to ensure that their green building features are maintained. Buildings are awarded GBI - Platinum, Gold, Silver or Certified ratings depending on their scores achieved.

    • B-1: Is it possible to apply for more than one Green rating i.e – LEED and also GBI?

      A: You may apply to as many Green rating schemes as you wish. However, do bear in mind that GBI is developed specifically for Malaysia and its tropical climate.

    • B-2: Is my GBI rating valid forever?

      A: GBI rating's are valid for 3 years. To retain their GBI certification, buildings require re-assessment every three years to ensure that their green building features are maintained.

    • B-3: Is it compulsory to renew GBI projects after their original certification expires?

      A: The validity of GBI certification is 3 years. It is a voluntary rating scheme.

    • B-4: The Standard Form of Agreement given by GBI is for Developer. Is there any form for purchaser?

      A: No. There are no agreements between GSB and the Purchasers. To accommodate the Stamp Duty Incentives for Purchasers, it is the obligation of the Developer (GBI applicant) upon completion to provide the names and unit addresses for GBI Certificates to be made out to each purchaser.

    • B-5: How can a developer exit from the agreement with GBI if they sell off a building halfway through construction? Does GBI have a standard form or format to submit?

      A: The new owner will have to provide all the necessary details as the new registered applicant for the GBI Certification and the original applicant should transfer the GBI agreement to the new owner/developer. The GBI certificate will be issued to whoever is stated on record as the registered GBI applicant. There is no standard form for this change but it is allowed.

    • B-6: We previously registered with GBI and paid the full fee for a whole development of 80,000sq.m. GFA. However, the development is now revised to 3 phases of completion. The GFA for phases 1 and 2 total 13,721sq.m, which is significantly less than our previous registration. We would like to know if the fee difference can be refunded to the client ?.

      A: If the 13,721sq.m. includes all the necessary amenities for the purpose of the targeted DA scoring, a resubmission of the new proposed areas needs to be furnished together with full information on the various components to GBI for review of registration fee and computation of refund as appropriate.

    • B-7: Can we apply for GBI certification for only 4 blocks of shop office buildings of a development totalling 12 blocks?

      A: Yes. GBI Certification may be applied for a single parcel or phase of a development. In this instance, the GBI Certificate would identify the specific 4 blocks of shop office as the buildings which are rated under Green Building Index. Please also refer to FAQ C-4.

    • B-8: Why is the GBI Registration Fee for residential projects set at a minimum of RM5,000.00 for single residences with a Gross Floor Area of less than 2,000 sq.m.? This is seen as very expensive by many developers.

      A: There has been some confusion regarding GBI Registration Fees for Residential Projects. If it is a single residence with a GFA of less than 2,000sq.m, it is true that the GBI Registration Fee as shown in the GBI Registration Fees Schedule is RM5,000.00. However, based on a medium size housing scheme of 200 units of repetitive design with unit area of (e.g.) 150sq.m. GFA, the GBI Registration Fee is RM100.00 per unit computed as follows:

      a) Total GFA = 200 x 150 = 30,000sq.m.
      b) From the GBI Registration Fees Schedule, the fee payable = RM20,000
      c) Registration Fees = RM20,000 / 200 units = RM100.00 per unit

      Even for a small housing schemes of 25 units of repetitive design with a unit area of (e.g.) 150sq.m. GFA, the GBI Registration Fee is just RM320.00 per unit computed as follows:

      a) Total GFA = 25 x 150 = 3,750sq.m.
      b) From the GBI Registration Fees Schedule, the fees payable = RM8,000
      c) Registration Fees = RM8,000 / 25 units = RM320.00 per unit

    • B-9: If we opt to submit under the GBI Township tool (the site is 22 acres), is it correct that at least 50% of buildings also have to be GBI certified? Does this mean that to register a township we have to have 50% of the buildings also registered and paid for? This seems to be a lot costlier than just the township registration alone.

      A: The GBI Township registration fee is a nominal fee for a township status. The fee for Township is published in the website. The fee is nominal due to the fact that it recognises 50% of buildings are committed to be GBI rated later on. The Township Rating requires many additional considerations that deal with infrastructure, landscape areas and transportation. Please refer to the Township Tool for further details.

    • B-10: How much is the fee to obtain a replacement copy of the various GBI Certificates?

      A: The fees payable for replacement certificates is as follows:
      1. Certificate of Completion (GBI Facilitator Course) = RM50.00 per copy
      2. Certificate of GBI Accredited Facilitator = RM50.00 per copy
      3. Certificate of GBI CxS = RM50.00 per copy
      4. Certificate (Provisional or Final) of GBI Rating = RM200.00 per copy
      All fees are payable to "Greenbuildingindex Sdn Bhd".

    • C-1: When a new version of a GBI Tool is released (e.g. RNC V2.0, V3.0, etc...), how do we determine which version to use for our project?

      A: Whenever a new version of a tool is released, a cut-off date will be anounced for the older version to be phased out. During this grace period, you may use either tool at your discretion. Projects registered after the cut-off date must then use the new version.

    • C-2: Why are there different GBI tools for Residential and Non-Residential buildings?

      A: Residential buildings function differently from Commercial, Industrial or Institutional buildings and also have peak-use periods that differ markedly. For example - Non-Residential buildings usually operate at maximum capacity during the day whilst homes peak during the evening and night.

    • C-3: For SOHO units (work and residential combined) - Do we use the residential or commercial rating tool?

      A: SOHO projects of residential typologies may use the GBI RNC tool conditional upon both the Owner and the Architect (PSP) declaring separately in writing that the said project shall be used for residential occupancy only. However, approval is also subject to GBI ascertaining on a case by case basis that any commercial elements incorporated are merely to support the building residents.

    • C-4: Can one component (e.g. a single office tower) of a larger mixed-use development apply for GBI certification even if the project's other components do not apply for GBI certification?

      A: Yes. GBI Certification may be applied for a single parcel or phase of a development, i.e. the office tower. This is because, in the GBI Certificate, GSB will identify the office tower as the building which has been rated under Green Building Index.

    • C-5: Two towers share a common podium. Can the two towers share GBI points for items such as: EQ2, SM4, SM5, SM9, SM10, SM12, MR5, WE3 etc...

      A: In principle, the answer is YES. However, it may be advisable for the podium to be either submitted as a separate entity or assigned to one of the towers. This is because if combined, then the worst score for each criterion of either tower or podium will be applicable to the final GBI score.

    • C-6: For a mixed development under one registration, if we intend to split all components into 3 groups such as hotel tower, corporate office tower and retail & office suite blocks, can we treat the 4 blocks of retail & office suite as one building and OTTV calculation will then be based on façades exposed to the exterior? Likewise, due to sharing a common roof terrace, how can we calculate the portion of RTTV? Can we assume and use the building footprint as area of roof and apply this to the RTTV computation?

      A: Yes, the 4 blocks can be under one submission but each block will be assessed individually for OTTV and not an averaged OTTV. The worst case result will then apply. RTTV will apply to the block directly affected in terms of roof solar impact.

    • C-7: I have an existing property that I want to get GBI certified. Can I apply?

      A: Yes. Please refer to the GBI Non-Residential Existing Building [NREB] Tool.

    • C-8: NRNC or NREB - I have a building which was constructed a few years ago and is now going through some ID refurbishment and changes to the internal areas. The general building footprint and external facade remain the same. Would this project be classified as an existing building or new construction?

      A: Existing building – Please use the NREB rating tool.

    • C-9: NRNC or NREB - We refer to an existing building which was constructed for temporary use. The client intends to demolish it and build a permanent structure. Everything will be demolished and removed, except for the portal frame structure and the underground services which will be reused. The layout and the floor areas will change significantly. Since this is a major renovation, do we register under NRNC or NREB?

      A: NRNC

    • C-10: We intend to apply for GBI certification for our newly completed building but find it hard to score in three specific parts of the Non-Residential Existing Building (NREB) assessment criteria, namely: Part 3 - Sustainable Site Planning & Management (SM), Part 4 - Material & Resources (MR) and Part 6 - Innovation (IN). Please advise us how to score in these areas.

      A: Please consult a GBI Facilitator or attend the regularly conducted GBI Facilitator Course.

    • C-11: Can we apply the NRNC tool for the industrial sector, e.g. manufacturing plant?

      A: NRNC tool is not applicable for factories. Please refer to the GBI Industrial New Construction (INC) Tool. In special cases, the appropriate tool for a project can also be determined on case to case basis to confirm its suitability.

    • C-12: Which tool should we use to certify a green hospital? If we are to refer to existing rating tools, is there any variation on certain items, for example BEI of the building as the energy consumption of hospital is higher due to the equipments?

      A: For new green hospital construction, use the GBI NRNC tool until the bespoke Healthcare tool is launched. Adjusted BEI for hospitals can be found under FAQ B-4.

    • C-13: Core & Shell - Can GBI assess shell and core buildings i.e. shop offices with unknown future tenants?

      A: Current GBI tools apply to whole buildings and not a portion or part of the premise. There is no GBI tool for core & shell at this point in time. Shop offices can still be GBI certified but relevant GBI credits apply to the whole building, including tenanted areas.

    • C-14: Core & Shell - For large commercial buildings such as an airport, a retail mall or a shopping centre, a considerable amount of floor area is designated as 'tenant areas'. Tenant areas are typically defined as those areas which are under the control of tenants and can be fitted out by tenants. For GBI certification of such buildings, are all of the GBI requirements applicable only to the 'BASE building' areas, i.e. areas under the control of the owner/ landlord, or are these requirements also imposed upon the tenant areas? The next question is that if GBI criteria also apply for the tenant areas, do all these GBI requirements constitute a guideline or do they need to be accounted for within the total building computations towards achieving the relevant credits?

      A: Current GBI tools apply to whole buildings and not a portion or part of the premise. GBI requirements are therefore applicable to the whole building (inclusive of both landlord and tenant areas). This situation is no different with office buildings. Please note that the GBI rating tools have been developed to suit our local climate, local culture and local practice that amongst other considerations, require the whole ‘base’ building to be properly designed and sustainably maintained to remain green.

    • C-15: Core & Shell (INC) - We received an enquiry to apply for GBI Gold rating for 4 units of bungalow type factories and 16 units of semi-D factories. The factories will be sold to different end users and we do not know what the factories will be used for. Kindly advise if this kind of application can be accepted as GBI does not have a rating tool for core & shell factory rating.

      A: GBI rating tools have been developed to suit our local climate, local culture and local practice that amongst other considerations, require the whole ‘base’ building to be properly designed and sustainably maintained to remain green. Current GBI tools apply to whole buildings and not a portion or part of the premise. There is no GBI tool for core & shell at this point in time.

    • C-16: Where can we source for green building renovation guidelines for new tenants in our building?.

      A: If the building renovation that you referring to, relates to renovation of an existing building, you can refer to the GBI NREB (Non-Residential Existing Building) Guideline. However, if it is for interior fit-out works, please refer to the GBI Office Interiors Tool (Projected Release Date: Q4-2014).

  • D. GBI ASSESSMENTS (DA, CVA, Recertification, etc.…)
    • D-1: Do you have the updated list of corresponding signatories for criteria checklists, for all GBI tools?
    • D-2: What happens if my building does not achieve the rating I want?

      A: You will have to review your design and make changes necessary to achieve the desired rating. Your GBI Facilitator may be able to suggest options for this. If applicable, you may also make an appeal on any specific criteria by paying the necessary appeal fee.

    • D-3: How long will it take for the final GBI Rating Certificate to be issued?

      A: 2 to 3 months provided the submissions are in order.

    • D-4: We note that in RNC Version 2.0, the Renewable Energy tabulation for high rises seems to conflict with the values listed in the Design Reference Guide (1st Edition). Which criteria should be followed?

      A: Should there be any conflicting data, the Rating Tool shall always supersede the Design Reference Guide, which as its name implies, is only a Guide. The data in the Tool shall therefore apply.

    • D-5: Do we need to enclose a copy of approved Building Plan (BP) from relevant local authority or just an approval letter is sufficient? As our development is under construction, the BP plan might not reflect the actual development with GBI design & implementation. In this case, our submission shall be based on the improved version of plan as base for DA report, is it correct?

      A: Approved BP drawings are not required. Your submission for DA must be based on what would be finally built, otherwise you may stand to lose points at CVA stage. Required supporting documents for each criterion can be found in the Design Reference Guide. For additional guidance, please refer to your GBIF to advise you on correct procedures for DA & CVA submissions.

    • D-6: For a mixed development under one registration, if we intend to split all components into 3 groups such as hotel tower, corporate office tower and retail & office suite blocks, can we treat the 4 blocks of retail & office suite as one building and OTTV calculation will then be based on façades exposed to the exterior? Likewise, due to sharing a common roof terrace, how can we calculate the portion of RTTV? Can we assume and use the building footprint as area of roof and apply this to the RTTV computation?

      A: In principle, the answer is YES. However, it may be advisable for the podium to be either submitted as a separate entity or assigned to one of the towers. This is because if combined, then the worst score for each criterion of either tower or podium will be applicable to the final GBI score.

    • D-7: After DA submission, the design team discovers they can score additional points for certain criteria. Can we submit additional points during the construction stage or do we submit during verification stage? Are there any additional charges incurred?

      A: There are only 2 stages of GBI Assessments; namely DA and CVA. Submissions are not entertained in between. Claimed points can be added or removed at the CVA stage submission at no cost. Additional fees are applicable only in the event of an appeal at DA or CVA stages.

    • D-8: If a building achieves 50% occupancy just 3 months after CCC, when will the GBI Certifier undertake the project's CVA?

      A: Upon submission of all verified results as required for CVA. Note that the 50% occupancy timeline is to enable the EMS to be fully commissioned, utility bills to reflect against verified results, post occupancy comfort survey to be done, etc...

    • D-9: How many months of energy or other records are required for verification after 50% occupancy?

      A: At least 2 months of stabilised consumption records are needed.

    • D-10: GBI Completion & Verification Assessment (CVA) will be conducted after CCC and within 12 months or minimum 50% occupancy in the building. If after 12 months the building's occupancy is still below 50%, will certifier still conduct verification?

      A: Yes

    • D-11: Recertification Process - How does GBI define the time-frame and cut-off period for the 3 year GBI validy period? Is there a recommended timeframe to kick-start the recertification process?

      A: The validity period of the Final GBI certificate is printed on the GBI certificate. It is recommended that application for GBI recertification be submitted at least 3 months before the stated expiry date.

    • D-12: For GBI recertification every 3 years, please clarify the following:
      1. What is the rationale for recertification?
      2. How does the process work?
      3. Will all the originally awarded criteria points be reassessed?
      4. What is the role of consultants in this process?
      5. How much is the GBI registration fee for recertification?

      1. Recertification of GBI rated buildings serves to ensure that these buildings continue to perform sustainably during their life span.

      2. Clause 3.7 of your Agreement with GBI states; Renewal ASSESSMENT(S) shall be carried out by GBI every 3 years in order to maintain the validity of the GBI CERTIFICATE. The APPLICANT shall, as a condition precedent, make an application for the renewal assessment not later than 2 months before the expiry of the GBI CERTIFICATE. No reminders to this effect will be sent by GBIAP/GSB. Note that renewal assessment may be for the same, lower or higher rating level.

      3. Buildings undergoing renewal assessment will be deemed to have maintained and sustained all the green criteria points previously awarded, and assessment will be conducted primarily to verify the dynamic criteria of utility consumption energy, water and waste; and any minor changes made e.g. tenancy alterations affecting daylighting, views, pollutants et cetera. In essence, all credit points previously awarded will be reviewed and reassessed only if there are changes made. If no changes had been made, then the previously awarded points remain status quo for those criteria.

      4. The role of the various consultants, if appointed, will depend on the scope of works the owner wish for them to undertake.

      5. Fee payable to GBI for renewal can be viewed on GBI webpage under the tab "How GBI works".

    • D-13: Query on renewal of GBI Certification - Will NRNC projects be reassessed using the NRNC Tool or NREB Tool?

      A: If the CVA issued is based on NRNC then for renewal of certification after 3 years, the assessment will be based on the NRNC tool and credit points will be maintained for all unchanged criteria that cannot be reverified (e.g. criteria for construction waste, selection of site, pollution control, etc.). However, criteria relating to building performance (daylighting, rainwater harvesting, greenery, energy & water consumption etc...) will be reassessed for compliance during the renewal process.

    • D-14: For a Core & Shell designed building, GBI scoring can at most achieve Certified level which cannot meet Local Authority’s requirement for GBI Gold rating. Please advise how to strive for a higher rating.

      A: There is no Core and Shell scoring available in any of the GBI tools. The GBIF and Design Team need to submit for DA the full fit-out designs to achieve the desired Gold rating. Construction thereafter may proceed with any variant of Core & Shell and upon completion, there is 12 months after CCC for the building to be fitted out and be occupied to meet the as-designed DA intent. CVA will be conducted at the end of this 12 months period for the occupied floors with the unoccupied floors designated as vacant areas (for which the BEI formula incorporates allowance to do so). Hence, there is no reason why a higher GBI rating cannot be strived for.

    • E-1: We have been briefed that the tax exemption is only applicable to buildings which have received the final GBI Certification and that the validity period of the GBI certification is from 24 October 2009 until 31 December 2014. Is this still valid? When is a project eligible for these incentives?

      A: The green cost incentives remain valid. Application can be made upon obtaining the final (CVA) GBI Certificate. Please refer to GBI website under the Resources Tab for the 17 March 2010 presentation slides on GBI Tax Exemption. For more details, please attend the regularly conducted GBI Tax Incentive talks by MGBC.

    • E-2: One of our clients attended a talk on tax incentives by Pricewaterhouse Coopers and was informed that developers are not entitled to the tax incentives. Appreciate if you could clarify.

      A: The Owner named in the GBI Certificate is entitled to the tax incentive.

    • E-3: A developer is constructing an office tower and will be selling all of the office suites. The developer is the "applicant" in the GBI application. The developer is eligible for Tax rebate. Is this statement correct?

      A: Please refer to your professional tax consultant for verification to the following response.
      1. The government tax incentive for green buildings refers to the Qualifying Green Cost incurred in achieving GBI certification.
      2. To be eligible for 'tax rebate', the developer must derive income from the building to set off against his profit from the income generated.

    • E-4: The tax benefits are claimable by the owner (and user) and not the developer. Therefore is the certificate attached to the building or the owner? Example: CF is attached to building not owner.

      A: The Certificate is given to the owner (GBI Applicant) and is for the particular building that is identified on the Certificate.

    • E-5: For an owner who buys a newly constructed office tower and makes enhancement to the building such as installing flow regulators for water fittings, photovoltaics, recycle bins, etc to achieve GBI certified level - will the building then be eligible to apply for GBI under existing building criteria and the owner be eligible for the tax incentives?

      A: The owner will have to decide whether to apply for GBI certification under the NRNC or NREB tools. If the building achieves at least GBI Certified level for either tool, then the Green Cost items will be listed in GBI Certificate for tax deduction purposes. For more details, please attend the regularly conducted GBI Tax Incentive talks conducted by MGBC

    • E-6: If a building is leased to a tenant for a certain number of years, can the tenant who has undertaken the necessary renovation works to obtain GBI certification be eligible to apply for the GBI tax incentive?

      A: Green Cost incentives are claimable only by the party named in the GBI certificate. Please refer to your tax consultant (and legal advisor) where applicable.

    • E-7: We are the GBI Facilitator for a developer building a government owned building. Since this is a government building project, the tax exemption entitlement for green cost may be claimable by the developer. If this is the case, would the following GBI registration information be correct?
      1. a) Owner’s name : Named Government Agency
      2. b) Project contact : Developer
      Since it will be under developer should the green cost be compiled by developer’s Quantity Surveyor? As the developer will provide 25 years of comprehensive service and maintenance to the owner, the subsequent GBI renewal every 3 years is part of the agreement. What is the process and anticipated renewal fee to be charged by GBI

      A: Incentive can only be given to whoever is the applicant for the GBI certification. It can be the developer but the tax exemption will only apply to revenue generated from that particular building and not from their overall business.
      a) Owner’s name : Developer
      b) Project contact : Facilitator
      The green cost will need to be compiled by the design team QS with the engineers’ inputs where applicable, and endorsed by the Architect for submission to GBI. If there is no retrofit, then renewal will be merely a verification exercise. Renewal Fees are posted on the GBI website.

    • E-8: We have a building in Malaysia that is currently undergoing refurbishment and we have the following enquiries:
      - Are there any incentive schemes upon achieving a certain GBI standard in Malaysia?
      - How does it work for a building where 50% of its GFA is process area (i.e. factory)?

      A: GBI tax incentive is in the form of “Qualifying Expenditure” for incremental costs to attain GBI certification. This includes any part of the process components that contribute to GBI credits.

    • E-9: Does the Stamp Duty Exemption apply for sub-sales to subsequent owners within a GBI certificate's initial 3 year validity period?

      A: The project certification is valid for three (3) years but the Stamp Duty Exemption only applies to the first purchaser and not to subsequent buyers. As such individual GBI certificates will not be issued to sub-sale parties.

    • E-10: Are “Consultancy fees”, “Design fees”, “GBI application fees”, and “GBI Facilitator fees” for Green Buildings classified as ‘Green Cost’ and hence eligible for tax incentives?

      A: No. The tax incentives originally adopted in Budget 2010 allow only for capital expenditure and do not cover such fees. GBI will be applying for their inclusion under future green building tax incentive schemes.

    • E-11: I understand that Green Cost is the capital expenditure incurred to obtain the GBI Certification. However, is the extra material and labour costs considered as Green Cost as well? For example, under EE2 Lighting Zone, there is a point for provision of motion sensors or equivalent to complement lighting zoning for at least 25% NLA. Does the Green Cost under this criterion include only the sensors or the system as a whole (sensors, wiring connections & extra labour cost)?

      A: Tax incentive is on the difference in cost between the Green item and the base item. Therefore, if the base item is nought, then the green cost in the said example would be for the complete installation cost. Please refer to GBI website under the Resources Tab for the 17 March 2010 presentation slides on GBI Tax Exemption. For more details, please attend the regularly conducted GBI Tax Incentive talks by MGBC.

    • E-12: For the green costs that have to be submitted for tax incentives, do the green cost have to be supported with invoices and delivery orders?

      A: Green costs need to be categorized into the 6 GBI criteria and must be certified by the Principal Submitting Person of the project (details are normally prepared and signed off by the project's QS and M&E consultant). There is no need to attach supporting documents for submission to GBI. However, such supporting documents need to be archived should the relevant authorities wish to check in future.

    • E-13: Is there a standard format for Green Costs to be certified by Qualified QS? Any sample or similar format can be referred in GBI website?

      A: Please refer to the examples posted on the GBI website for this item. Please also attend the regularly conducted Tax Incentive talks (Green Cost Rebate) at the PAM Centre.

    • E-14: Do you have the updated list of Green Cost Rebate Signatories for submission to GBI?

      A: Click on the following link to view the updated list of Green Cost Rebate Signatories for submission to GBI:

      GBI Qualifying Expenditure for Green Cost Rebate Signatories for submission to GBI (PDF)

    • E-15: I understand that GBI is recognised and supported by at least 6 town councils. DBKL, MBPJ, MPPP are giving various incentives to encourage more GBI rated buildings in their respective locality. Is it possible to know what types of incentives are actually given to developers? We hope to use such information to appeal to our town council as well.?

      A: GBI is constantly engaging the various local authorities on incentives for GBI rated buildings. The incentives given to-date differ with each local authority and are on case to case basis. Such incentives range from increase in Plot Ratio (DBKL), permission to develop to Maximum Plot Ratio (MBPJ), to reduction in Planning Fees (MPPP). However, there has been no standard list of incentives published by any of the local authorities and GBI will continue to pursue the matter.

    • E-16: In order for us to score GBI NRNC SM6: QLASSIC, we found out that there will be a significant incremental cost in the main builder works, due to the necessities to employ skilled workers and additional time needed to achieve high standard workmanship.
      If we manage to quantify this cost, can it be claimed as GBI green incremental cost for tax incentives?

      A: Please note that QLASSIC reflects minimum good practice standard and Green Cost does not apply.

    • F-1: GBI serves to enrich the individuals who own it as a registered Sendirian Berhad (Greenbuildingindex Sdn Bhd).

      A: Greenbuildingindex Sdn Bhd (GSB) was registered on 23 Feb 2009, to manage GBI for the purpose of limited liability as a prelude to forming a Trust or Foundation in the long term. The shares of GSB are held by the Association of Consulting Engineers Malaysia (ACEM) and Pertubuhan Akitek Malaysia (PAM). ACEM is registered under the Registrar of Companies Act and are hence permitted to own other equities. PAM through 3 appointed trustees (because PAM which is registered under the Registrar of Society Act with no limited liability cannot hold business equity directly (circa 2009*). The fees collected from all registered projects are being ultilzed for funding; day-to-day operations, training & outreach program, publicity & advertising to promote development of green buildings. Therefore no individuals have or will ever benefit from GBI.

      *Note that this Society ruling has since been changed in Oct 2011 and the PAM equities are now owned directly.

    • F-2: Very high and expensive GBI registration, accreditation and certification fees.

      A: This myth arose amongst other reasons, from selective misinterpretation of the following tabulated fee structure (for new construction)

      SINGLE RESIDENCE Below 2,000 5,000
      SMALL Up to 4,000 8,000
      INTERMEDIATE 4,001 to 10,000 10,000
      MEDIUM 10,001 to 30,000 20,000
      LARGE 30,001 to 50,000 32,000
      EXTRA LARGE 50,001 to 100,000 45,000
      MEGA PROJECT Above 100,000
      Assessment fee will be determined on a project-by-project basis

      * Rates shown are as of the date of the application and registration and may be revised from time to time as appropriate.
      * Rates shown are excluding Government Service Tax (GST)

      - From the above table, the fee for 1,000 units of link house residential development @ RM5,000 per unit, it is misinterpreted that it will cost the developer an additional cost of RM5 million.

      - This myth has been clarified by Sabah REHDA (SHAREDA) in the Borneo Post April 29 2011 as reproduced below;

      "We were misguided on GBI registration fee as the RM5,000 fee is for individually developed bungalow unit. For a development of 1,000 units of doublestorey terrace houses each of 172sqm, the fee would be as low as RM65 per unit (under Mega Project charges). For 500 units, it is at RM90 per unit while the fee is RM200 each for 50 to 100 units.

      - It is worthwhile to note that the GBI Registration is a one-off all-in fee that includes Certification and Site Verification visits (even to East Malaysia). There is also no additional charge for all rating categories be it Certified or Platinum level.

      - As for GBI Facilitator services and charges, this will be market-driven and is not dissimilar to Singapore Green Mark Manager fee which can range from a 'postman service fee' to 'enhanced service fee'. The significant development since the advent of GBI in May 2009 is that LEED A/P and GMM fees have all continued to spiral downwards in tandem with GBIF fees.

    • F-3: Obtaining GBI certification can cost 20 to 30% more.

      A: - Published data from LEED and Green Mark are remarkably similar with cost increase ranging from 0.3% (Certified level) to 8% (Platinum level).

      - As for GBI costs, these are beginning to become available as registered buildings reach completion and the trend appears to reflect that of LEED and Green Mark green buildings. Certain residential high rise developers have declared insignificant cost increase to attain GBI Certified level. Amongst the completed commercial buildings, the world class Suruhanjaya Tenaga (Energy Commission) GBI Platinum building incurred a green cost premium of 6% and the GBI Gold rated First Avenue Office building registered a 9% green cost premium with its Thermal Storage Air Conditioning plant accounting for over half of this green cost.

      - Building a green building, regardless whether if it is GBI or any other rating, requires knowledge, foresight and good planning, which migh not necessary require additional cost.

    • F-4: GBI certification is very difficult to achieve.

      A: - GBI incorporate local by-law and regulations such as: UBBL, MS1525, MSMA, CIDB QLASSIC, CIDB IBS etc. Therefore, minor effort would be required to achieve certified ratings.

      - Striving for GBI Certified rating will merely require designers and the project team to adopt fundamental good practice measures and awareness of a sustainable environment as aptly demonstrated by the various GBI conducted workshops. In fact this basic rating level is comparative with most if not all available green building rating tools. Any lower standard will veer towards green washing.

      - Similarly GBI Silver rating will require the project team to adopt excellent practice measures on sustainability while achieving GBI Gold rating will put the building amongst the top 20% achievers in the country.

      - Nonetheless it is true that GBI Platinum rating is indeed very difficult to achieve. This is where GBI lives up to its reputation of international billing and will expect only a handful of such world class buildings. If the complaint on GBI being difficult to achieve is premised on GBI Platinum rating then GBI would have achieved its goal.

    • F-5: GBI Qualifying Green Cost approval is very difficult to obtain.

      A: - GBI is committed to ensure adherence to the terms and conditions of this government incentive scheme (the first of its kind in the world). The implementation mechanism places responsibility and liability on the project's professionals who are regulated by their respective boards. The GBI Accreditation Panel serves as the checker for these cost submissions and approval is given by the President of the Board of Architects Malaysia.

      - Submission of Qualifying Green Costs can only be done after the building has been awarded its CVA certificate. As of October 2014, XX projects have received final CVA certificates and Green Cost certificates have been issued to 6 buildings totalling over RM 36 million. Another XX are currently being processed with the remaining not likely to submit any claim due to insignificant cost incured to achieve their GBI certification.

      - This myth may have arose due to the rejection of Green Cost claims for lifestyle installations such as gold plated water fittings, road humps and other initiatives that are unrelated to sustainability.

    • F-6: Green Building Index is not as good as other rating tools.

      A: GBI is recognized by Malaysian government and its relevant authorities. GBI rating tools are developed to suit the Malaysian local climate, culture and practice, integrating the local building codes making it uniquely appropriate in the Malaysian context.

    • F-7: Green Building Index is not internationally recognised, it is widely used in only Malaysia.

      A: GBI is internationally recognized for its credibility and is benchmarked against international standards. GBI is affiliated with and complies to World Green Building Council (WGBC) standards.

    • G-1: What is the role of the GBI Facilitator and is it compulsory to appoint one for my project?

      A: Accredited GBI Facilitators provide professional services to help design your project to achieve your desired green rating. They work with your consultant team during the design stage and will prepare the requisite submissions to GBI for certification. They will also be able to propose various design options for your consultants to consider that may be able to help save initial capital and also long term operational costs. The GBI Facilitator should be appointed as early in the project as possible so as to be able to gain the best benefit from the input. It is not compulsory to appoint a GBI Facilitator if your consultant team or others have the requisite skill to make the necessary submissions.

    • G-2: What is the role of the GBI Certifier? Who appoints him/her?

      A: A GBI Certifier is assigned to each project upon registration. The Certifier is appointed by GBI for the purpose of carrying out the projects' assessments. Following DA and CVA submissions the Certifier issues reports to the GBI Accreditation Panel to register and issue the GBI Certification. For larger and more complex projects, up to two GBI Certifiers may be appointed to assess a project. The cost of the GBI Certifier(s) is included within the GBI Registration Fee.

    • G-3: How do I go about applying to be a GBI Facilitator?

      A: There are set criteria to be accredited as a GBI Facilitator. These are available on the GBI website in the "Resources" section. If you have the basic qualifications you will then have to attend the GBIF training course and complete the written exercises and examination. GBI maintains a list of all accredited GBI Facilitators. If you have been working in the building industry and especially on energy efficient buildings, you should apply for the course.

    • G-4: How do I get to become a GBI Certifier?

      A: There are set criteria to be accredited as a GBI Certifier. These are available on the GBI website in the "Resources" section. GBI Certifiers are generally professionals with experience in the design, construction and commissioning of green, sustainable or energy- efficient buildings.

    • G-5: Scope of works between the GBIF and the client's team of consultants (ie project Architect and M&E consultants). Is it the scope of work for the project M&E Consultant to provide all calculations and detail designs for the GBIF to assess and/or revise their designs according to a Green brief provided by the GBIF? Secondly, if a specialist system is required but is not within the scope of work of the consultant, such as wind turbine, etc, would the GBIF be required to carry out the design?

      1) For a green building, the design team consists of the whole design team led by the architect. Hence, the folly of dumping all green issues to the M&E consultant needs to be arrested.
      2) For specialist green elements to be designed, the respective professional’s code of conduct and ethics apply, which permits the engagement of specialist consultants to undertake such scope, if it is not within the original service agreement. Likewise, a GBIF’s responsibility should also follow the terms of their service agreement.

    • G-6: Can we score a point under IN2 by engaging our in-house GBI Facilitator? Does the GBI facilitator need to be registered as an independent company in order to qualify to submit a DA report?

      A: GBI Facilitators are registered as individuals and as such an in-house GBIF meets the IN2 criterion.

    • G-7: Referring to the recommended GBI Facilitators' scale of fees in the 'Guidelines on GBI facilitators' scope of work and fees'. If a Project consists of many separate building components (such as multiple units of bungalows, a few commercial buildings, a hospital, etc) each applying for GBI certification, would the total GBI Facilitators fees be calculated based on the value bracket of each building component or value bracket based of the overall construction cost? Would there be any guidelines for repetitive work such as for typical bungalows? Appreciate if you could also clarify on the registration fees on the same context of mixed development.

      1) The GBIF fee guideline is but a guideline. It is up to the individual GBIF to quote whatever fee they are comfortable with. However, it should be noted that each building may need to be submitted separately for GBI certification.
      2) There is no GBIF guideline on repetitive fee. Note that the respective professional boards (LAM and LJM) do publish fee calculations for repetitive work. 3) For GBI registration fee for such a development, please refer to GBI for a case-by-case review.

    • G-8: GBIF Scope & Fees - Do you have a recommended guideline on GBI facilitators’ scope of work and fees for Non-Residential Existing Building (NREB) GBI tool? The guidelines currently on the GBI website seem only applicable for New Construction buildings i.e. the NRNC and RNC tools. Your further guidance is much appreciated.

      A: GBI has no intention of creating a separate guideline on facilitator's scope and fees for NREB. The guideline for NRNC should be sufficient for the market to modify the scope of services to suit especially since the scope for NREB is expected to vary substantially for each building. With such a wide variation, the fee structure will also be of a wide range and GBI prefers the market to find its own level by using the NRNC model as a guide.

    • G-9: GREEN BUILDING INDEX FACILITATOR COURSE EXAM RETAKE - How much is the fee to retake the multiple choice question (MCQ) exam or group project exam?

      A: The fees payable for course exam retake are as follows:
      1. MCQ exam retake = RM100.00
      2. Group Project exam retake = RM100.00
      3. GBI Facilitator course and exam retake = RM750.00

    • G-10: GBI's Ruling regarding the Appointment of Project Consultants.

      Appointment of GBIF and GBI CxS for the same project:

      i) GBIF and PSP/SP can be from the same organisation but must be different individuals.
      ii) CxS and PSP/SP cannot be from the same organisation.
      iii) GBIF and CxS can be from the same organisation but must be different individuals.

    • H-1: Our client intends to engage a CxS, can GBI recommend some companies?

      A: A list of registered CxS is available on the GBI website.

    • H-2: Please elaborate on the requisite CVA submittals, e.g. what are the documents required to prove the carrying out of CxS’s full scope of work and what are the contents of the final commissioning report?

      A: Please refer to the specific tasks of the CxS as posted on the GBI website.

    • H-3: Can a developer nominate their own CxS to commission a project, instead of engaging a CxS that is already registered with GBI? If permitted, what information does the client need to submit to GBI to nominate their CxS.

      A: The developer can submit his CxS nominee to GBI for approval on a case by case basis. Please download information from GBI website on: “What are the Commissioning Specialist's roles, tasks and pre-requisites” to fully understand all the requirements. In this same file, GBI states the following:

      GBI will assess and approve individual CxS (upon request on a case by case basis for a specific building), engaged for each GBI registered project based on the prerequisites of such CxS as appended in the subsequent section. Meanwhile, a list of CxS recognized by GBI will be progressively posted on the GBI website.

      However, it must be cautioned that the case by case approved CxS must fully fulfill the all the duties of a CxS as very clearly spelt out in detail in the web posting, or else at CVA stage the applicant may lose the relevant credit score.

      As for submission for approval, follow the requirements listed in the CxS Registration Form (on the website). Should there be any shortfall in compliance, submit mitigating factors for GBI's consideration.

    • H-4: (A) is a developer and appoints its subsidiary (B) as the main contractor, and subsidiary (C) as its HVAC trade contractor. C has a registered CxS in its employment. A, B and C are all involved in the same project (in-house team). Can C who is the HVAC contractor, appoint its own staff as the CxS for the same project?

      A: The role of the CxS is clearly spelt out on the GBI website, and states: “GBI requires the CxS to be an independent, third-party expert who serves as an objective advocate of the owner, directs the commissioning process, and presents final recommendations to the owner regarding the performance of commissioned building systems. The design reviews and submittal reviews must be performed by a firm other than the design firm”. Therefore, if company C is not the design firm for the same project, then its CxS is permitted to be engaged. However, this CxS shall not be involved in implementation of the HVAC contract for the same project.

    • H-5: We are the appointed HVAC Contractor by a developer who also wants us to undertake the commissioning as we have a CxS in our employment. Can we do that?

      A: “The CxS must ensure that the building’s energy related systems are designed and installed to achieve proper commissioning so as to realise their full potential and intent”.
      Please note that the CxS is not only involved in the commissioning of HVAC system but that of reviewing the design and installation for all the building’s energy related systems to achieve proper commissioning. Hence, if he can fulfil all these roles, then yes. However, if the CxS is only to carry out the HVAC system commissioning then he is not a CxS but merely the HVAC T&C engineer.

    • H-6: GBI's Ruling regarding the Appointment of Project Consultants.

      Appointment of GBIF and GBI CxS for the same project:

      i) GBIF and PSP/SP can be from the same organisation but must be different individuals.
      ii) CxS and PSP/SP cannot be from the same organisation.
      iii) GBIF and CxS can be from the same organisation but must be different individuals.

    • I-1: RNC EE1 - Due to the current stage of construction our client finds it difficult to apply insulation to the roof of the building and would appreciate if the RTTV requirements be set aside. We understand the importance of having roof insulation but given the current situation we would appreciate that your panel allow this credit to be waived. Please note that our OTTV is however, achieving the requirements as per MS 1525.

      A: For the original versions of the GBI tools, there was no prerequisite or mandatory requirements. All submissions for certification under all GBI Rating Tools (except township) registered after 30th June 2014, will be required to comply with EE1 (Minimum Energy Efficiency Performance) in line with the gazette of such requirements under the UBBL 1984 Amendments 2012. This mandatory compliance requirement will not be applicable to existing buildings where submission to the Local Authority for approval is not required. The provision of Energy Management System under EE1 will only be applicable if it is required by the current MS1525. As such, compliance to RTTV and/or Roof U-Value cannot be set aside.

    • I-2: NRNC EE1 - For the provision of Energy Management System where air-conditioned spaces > 4,000sq.m, does air-conditioned space refer to the entire total area of a development or individual rooms that exceed 4,000sq.m?

      A: For the purposes of EE1, 'air-conditioned space' applies to the entire building submitted for assessment.

    • I-3: NRNC EE1: For a building with less than 4000 sq.m. of air-conditioned area, is it correct that there is no need to provide an Energy Management System?

      A: Correct, it is not mandatory to provide EMS in this case under EE1. However, to gain credits under EE8, applicant must demonstrate an alternative methodology for monitoring energy use.

    • I-4: U-value of RC Wall - GBI lecture notes on u-value computation lists thermal conductivity, R for internal surface and external surface as 0.04 and 0.13 respectively and I had been using these values to compute the uvalue for RC Wall. However, I was requested by GBI to provide the thickness (m) and k-values for these internal and external surfaces for justification. Please advise.

      A: The transfer of heat through walls (and also roofs) is impeded by the presence of a thin layer of relatively motionless air at the surface of the walls (and roofs). This thin air film offers some resistance to the heat flow and results in a temperature drop across the very thin layer of air. The surface resistance caused by this thin layer air film is affected by wind velocity, the thermal emissivity properties of the material, and the angles of the wall and roof surfaces. Therefore different resistance values for outside (and also inside) air films are often quoted. For the purposes of calculating OTTV and Roof U-values as required by MS1525 and the GBI rating tools, nominal values of surface resistances for walls and roofs given in the GBIF Course lecture notes are sufficient for use.

    • I-5: EE2 - LIGHTING ZONING - For buildings such as Convention Centres with shared multi-occupancies (e.g. exhibition halls, common area for registration, waiting / conference rooms, café & restaurant, etc...) can the lighting zoning be designed for functionality control to suit each activity?

      A: GBI is formulated so as not to stifle or restrict the creativity of designers. Therefore, GBI does accept performance and functionality control type designs provided you show reasonable justification.

    • I-6: NRNC EE3 - If a building energy usage does not exceed 100kVA, is it correct that there is no need for additional sub-metering?

      A: The intent of EE3 is to ensure energy consumption can be monitored so as to enable implementation of energy efficient operations at all times. In this instance, if it can be demonstrated that one main meter (with no additional submeters since usage is <100kVA) is sufficient to monitor energy efficient operation of all energy consuming components, then this objective is met for the credit to be awarded.

    • I-7: NRNC EE4 – Renewable Energy - If a project fails to obtain FiT approval is there any mechanism to address the selling of Renewable Energy back to the national grid?

      A: With or without FiT approval, Renewable Energy produced can be connected to the grid and is being done so. There is no other mechanism to address the selling back of Renewable Energy to the national grid besides the FiT.

    • I-8: NREB EE4 - Renewable Energy - How do you define Maximum Demand (MD)?

      A: Maximum Demand applies to electricity billing under TNB C1 or C2 tariff, and is an option under the NREB tool but not the NRNC tool. For existing buildings, the MD (if applicable) will be known from its historical electricity billing.

    • I-9: Renewable Energy - What is definition of BIPV? Is Building Integrated PV required to be part of building structure such as roof or façade? Can those PV be installed on RC flat roof rather than be part of roof structure? Will it create more waterproofing problem in later stage?

      A: Please consult your design team members to understand the difference between BIPV and PV units. Both qualify for the EE4 credits.

    • I-10: MS1525:2007 page 36, section 8.11.1, states that chillers shall comply with ARI Std 550/590-98. We were informed by XX, who is a dealer for YY make of chiller that the JIS standard is also acceptable by GBI. Kindly reconfirm to us what is the parameter in Section 8.11.1 of MS1525 that would be replaced by JIS.

      A: GBI does not stipulate that chillers must specifically comply with ARI Standards.
      As for your reference to MS1525, the parameters listed in Section 8.11.1 refers to Standard Rating Conditions for which chillers must be tested to, and also that for applications in Malaysia, chillers must use the NPLV conditions to determine their energy efficiency COP values. Therefore testing to ARI or JIS or any other third party standards is acceptable provided these are conducted in accordance with the stipulated Standard Rating Conditions and NPLV conditions. Note that the energy performance of the whole building is what GBI is interested in as per criteria EE5 on BEI value, and not just the chillers. Please also note that GBI does not endorse or approve any make of equipment.

    • I-11: Definition of NLA - Can the definition of NLA differ for the different GBI credits? For example, for motion sensor coverage of 25% of NLA, can the NLA include toilet and stairs? - because these areas are usually areas where it is practical to put motion sensors. However, for Day-Lighting credit, the NLA excludes the toilets and stairs? Or is it possible to use the same NLA (exclude toilets and stairs) but the area coverage of motion sensors for toilets and stairs are used in the calculations. As an example, the NLA is 100m2 (exclude toilets and stair areas). But motion sensors are placed in the toilets and stairs (20m2). Hence the coverage is 20/100= 20%. Is this acceptable?

      A: There is only one definition for NLA: Nett Lettable Area. NLA excludes staircase, toilet, etc... The “same’ NLA is used as the denominator in the calculation for both EE2 and EQ8. For EE2, all areas fitted with motion sensors (within or outside the office areas) can be included in the calculation. Therefore your sample calculation is correct. For EQ8, the compliance area must be within the NLA.

    • I-12: Please define GFA, GLA and NLA as used in the EE and EQ criteria.

      A: Gross Floor Area (GFA) is the total built up area of floor space within a building, including the thickness of external walls but excluding internal voids. For detailed GFA definition, please refer to the definition by Kuala Lumpur City Hall.

      Gross Lettable Area (GLA) refers to the total functional use area for commercial purposes such as office, retail, cafeteria, restaurant, gymnasium and clubhouse inside the building but excluding all common areas and service areas. The sum of GLA, common areas and service areas should equal the GFA (excluding car park).

      Nett Lettable Area (NLA) is the total rentable or saleable area and is the exact total functional use area for commercial purposes inside the building excluding all common areas and service areas. NLA is also the actual area cited in the Sales & Purchase Agreement to property buyer. Therefore NLA < GLA and NLA is GFA less all common areas (stairs, corridors, plant rooms etc...).

      Note: GLA is used in BEI formula

    • I-13: NRNC EE8 - For a small building of < 4000sq.m. GFA, I intend to install submeters for lighting, plug load and ACMV but no EMS. Is this eligible to score EE8?

      A: The intent of EE8 is to provide for the ongoing accountability of building energy consumption over time. Hence, if it can be demonstrated that this objective can be achieved then the credit will be awarded. Providing EMS (though this is not mandatory) is one option. Other possible options include Installing e.g. timer switches and submeters in conjunction with proper and regular monitoring of energy use over time (through a dedicated energy management team/staff) can be suitable for this 'small' building.

    • J-1: Please confirm that the OTTV calculation includes non air-conditioned areas as well? Does the façade area encompassing non-air conditioned areas need to be included?

      A: OTTV measures the average heat gain into the building through its envelope. MS1525:2007 calls for this measurement to be made along the entire façade, even if the areas that the façade envelopes are non-air conditioned, e.g. toilets, stairs, pantry, etc.

    • J-2: A project has two components, e.g. condominium block with some townhouses in the same strata scheme. Which OTTV value do we use? Do we average the OTTV value based on the area of each type?

      A: OTTV calculation is for each individual building and should not be averaged.

    • J-3: How do we approach OTTV calculation for mass housing scheme (landed property)? Each house would obviously have different orientation due to roads and site.

      A: OTTV calculation is for each individual building. Scoring for Advanced Energy Efficiency to be based on worse case scenario.

    • J-4: We have a landed residential project which has three different types of designs: terrace, semi-detach and bungalow. Under EE1, if one type of housing (say the bungalow) cannot achieve the 50W/m2 minimum OTTV requirement, does this mean we will not be awarded any points? Do we take the worst case scenario or is there a possibility to prorate the values based on percentage of area/units?

      A: GBI is a building tool and OTTV for each building has to be calculated separately then tabulated and submitted. In order to score points in EE1, each individual building within the terrace type, semi-d type and bungalow type must achieve OTTV not exceeding 50W/m2. Prorating is not permitted.

    • J-5: If the ratio between horizontal shading device and window glazing is smaller than 0.3, how to calculate the shading coefficient? In the GBIF Course Document, shading coefficient (SC) graph, the minimal shading window ratio shown is 0.30 to 0.40.

      A: If the ratio R1 for horizontal shading device is smaller than 0.3, as taught in the GBIF Course lectures, the SC value shall be taken as 1. In other words, the horizontal shading device is too small to have any significant effect on the shading of the window.

    • J-6: According to MS 1525:2007, we need to meet OTTV 50W/m2 and Visible Light Transmittance shall be more than 50% for daylight. According to facade consultants, it is difficult to achieve low SC and at the same time comply to more than 50% VLT. Can we score EE1 with OTTV < 50W/m2 but VLT < 50% ?

      A: Yes. The OTTV does not make reference to VLT values. If the question is related to daylighting in EQ8 and in reference to MS 1525, then the VLT has a function in relation to the daylight factor. VLT is not a compulsory component in the GBI rating tool. Note that MS 1525 Section 5.4 Daylighting, 5.4.2 states; “In order to take advantage of daylighting, the visible transmittance of the fenestration system should not be less than 50 %”.

    • J-7: Our building is using Low-E glass. Does it qualify for any GBI points? If so, which category is it classified under?

      A: Low-E glass is a type of insulated glazing that helps to reduce the OTTV value through reduced solar heat gain, which in turn helps to reduce energy required for cooling. Please consult your Facilitator to explain the resultant points scored in the relevant categories.

    • J-8: I have a client query on glass selection and the impact on GBI rating. This refers to the values of U-value, SC and VLT for the glazing to achieve GBI Platinum, Gold, Silver and Certified ratings. I have perused the GBI tool but found no statement or reference value for these properties. It is only in MS1525 where it is stated that Visible Light Transmittance (VLT) should not be less than 50%. It is my understanding that glass performance will affect the OTTV calculation together with the building orientation, WWR, shading device and more. However, GBI does not stipulate any specific values for glass performance to obtain GBI rating. Please advise the best way to explain these issues to my client as I have tried but he remains doubtful.

      A: The concept and depth of daylighting (which VLT relates to) and OTTV (which incorporates U-value and SC) are extensively taught at the GBIF course. The mathematical formula for OTTV itself is self-explanatory to any technically endowed individual. GBI is a holistic performance tool which allows designers the full repertoire of creative solutions to achieve the desired OTTV and BEI (as a building may be designed with minimal glazing or be fully glazed). Therefore, prescriptive reference values for glazing properties are not applicable, except for the recommended range of VLT values. Unfortunately GBI is unable to assist any individual in his business dealings. Please note that recently MGBC has started a GBI Professional Series to assist practitioners who wish to acquire in-depth knowledge on individual topics.

    • J-9: For OTTV calculation, can we consider advertising sticker films on glass curtain walling as part of shading film to cut off partial direct sunlight?

      A: For the purpose of Shading Coefficient (SC), all components that contribute to the SC of the glass must be an intrinsic or integral part of the glass. Advertising sticker films do not qualify, as it is not an integral part of the glazing. Please refer to your GBIF and other design team members as OTTV calculations and parameters are well defined.

    • J-10: If a thermal model has been done for a building in compliance to EE5-Advanced EE Performance, is it still a requisite to submit OTTV calculations to comply with EE1-Minimum EE Performance? Or would scoring in EE5 automatically mean full marks are scored for EE1?

      A: To derive EE5, building envelope derivation would need to be done and such a step would need to be submitted to verify the advanced EE calculations. Hence, EE1 calculations must be submitted separately.

    • J-11: Please advise who should provide the OTTV & RTTV calculations for a given project for GBI Submission. Should it be the Architect / M&E Engineer / GBI Facilitator / Other Consultant (such as ESD Consultant)?

      A: The GBI Design Reference Guide stipulates that for NRNC EE1 (Minimum EE Performance), the signatory for the DA/CVA Criterion Sheet is the PSP i.e. the Architect. The GBIF Course has repeatedly emphasized that going green involves a holistic approach in design by the entire project team. Regardless of which party/parties contribute or assist in the final computation of OTTV and RTTV, the PSP must lead the team. It is a contractual arrangement as to who should compute the OTTV tabulations. However, for DA/CVA submission, the PSP must still be the signatory.

    • J-12: RTTV Inquiry - I have a project with the top floors having floor to floor height of 16m to 30m and the roof is sloping with partial skylight. The calculated RTTV is 120W/m2. The OTTV is 36W/m2 with 0.6 WWR. Due to the height of the roof, theoretically the heat radiated into the roof skylight will unlikely reach the human level height. The air-conditioned zone height is up to 4m. A roof ventilation system will exhaust hot air accumulating at the bottom of the roof. With the system description above, can the RTTV calculation of 25W/m2 be excluded in EE1?

      A: The fundamental purpose of limiting RTTV for roofs with skylight is related to energy efficiency in conjunction with achieving indoor comfort for the occupied space below the skylight. The remaining non-skylight roof is factored in to help reduce the average RTTV figure. For the proposed design, the effect of solar gain through the skylight will not contribute to increased energy use for the space volume above occupancy level (in this case 4m is proposed through the application of low level displacement aircond). The effect of radiated heat from the roof tapers off with increasing height and its direct effect on the human head level will become insignificant with an atrium height exceeding 17m provided the hot air is vented to relief accumulation of heat which will otherwise be convected / conducted downwards. Hence, if the correct HVAC design strategy is adopted (e.g. TDV and hot air relief) then yes the RTTV compliance is not necessary.

    • J-13: Is RTTV calculation needed if the house area below skylight is not directly airconditioned staircase Is RTTV calculation needed if the house area below skylight is not directly airconditioned staircase area, but other closed rooms like bedrooms are airconditioned. The airconditioned and non airconditioned space are divided by internal walls and doors and windows.

      A: RTTV calculation is needed if there is a skylight on the roof that allows direct solar heat gain into the house, whether or not that part of the house is directly or indirectly air-conditioned. The intention is to understand that a high percentage of solar heat gain comes through the roof, and therefore the design of the skylight on the roof must meet the requirements of MS1525. The calculation of the Roof U-value, to determine the amount of heat gain via conduction through the solid parts of the roof, must also be carried out to meet MS1525 requirements.

    • K-1: We wish to have some illustration on how BEI is derived and normalised, starting from manipulating the real kW-hourly data collected from energy monitoring system to how to determine the actual building operation hours for normalisation purposes.

      A: The BEI formula is downloadable from the GBI website together with calculated examples. For office buildings, the normalised operating hours is also clearly stipulated as 2,700 hours per annum. Finally, please note that no manipulation of data is permitted.

    • K-2: We wish to have an elaborated explanation on the approach to Dynamic Energy Modelling for GBI Gold. What is the rationale of using Dynamic Energy Modelling to model the targeted BEI (instead of using it as a tool for adjusting baseline to measure and verify the energy savings)?

      A: Please refer to MS1525:2007 Chapter 10 - Building Energy Simulation Method for the elaborated approach. Dynamic Energy Modelling is necessary to ascertain accuracy of targeted BEI for EE enhancement criteria for DA submission for Gold or Platinum ratings. Note that simulation is not necessary if DA is not submitted.

    • K-3: For GBI Gold and Platinum Ratings, BEI calculations require the use of dynamic energy simulation using GBI approved software. Is there any list of the approved softwares released by GBI?

      A: Approved softwares listed in MS1525 Clause 10.5 include DOE-2, TRNSYS, ESP, IES, EnergyPlus, etc... which conform to requirements of ASHRAE Std 140, CIBSE: AM11 or equivalent.

    • K-4: What is the equivalent BEI for: 1) Retail areas and Malls 2) Hotel and Service Apartments 3) Hospital 4) Other categories?

      A: The BEI for Retail areas and Malls will be based on 84 operational hours/week instead of 52 (for Office). BEI for Hotel and Service Apartments & Hospital will be based on 24/7 operational but rationalized for Diversity & Storage Factors. BEI for Other Categories will be considered on a case-to-case basis. The table below lists the corresponding BEI values and credit points;

      EE5 pts Office Retail Hotel Hospital
      2 150 240 200 200
      3 140 225 190 190
      5 130 210 175 175
      8 120 195 160 160
      10 110 180 150 150
      12 100 160 135 135
      15 90 145 120 120

    • K-5: What is the benchmark that we should use for a mixed development? How do we separate and calculate the BEI given that the project comprises both office and retail mall components?

      A: For mixed development consisting of office and retail mall space, where the latter constitutes not more than 25% of the total GFA, then use the BEI formula which is now reproduced under FAQ K-6 together with the example on WOH adjustment. If retail space constitutes 75% or more of the total GFA, then use the BEI for Retail Mall as published under FAQ K-4. If retail space is more than 25% but less than 75% of the total GFA, then calculate the BEI for office space and retail space separately, and the lower credit score will apply.

    • K-6: When the GBI rating is assessed, do we need to consider the energy and water consumptions of Leased Units in the calculations e.g. BEI? How will the BEI be calculated for such a case?

      A: The BUILDING ENERGY INTENSITY (BEI) formula is appended hereunder and it has an allowance for floor vacancy to be excluded should any of the Leased Units not be occupied at CVA stage.

      BEI = [(TBEC - CPEC - DCEC) / (GFA(excluding carpark) - DCA - GLA * FVR)] * [52/WOH]


      • TBEC : Total Building Energy Consumption (kWh/year)
      • CPEC : Carpark Energy Consumption (kWh/year)
      • DCEC : Data Centre Energy Consumption (kWh/year)
      • GFA (excluding carpark) : Gross Floor Area exclusive of car park area (m2)
      • DCA : Data Centre Area (m2)
      • GLA : Gross Lettable Area (m2)
      • FVR : Weighted Floor Vacancy Rate of GLA (%)
      • 52 : Typical weekly operating hours of office buildings in KL/Malaysia (hrs/wk)
      • WOH : Weighted Weekly Operating Hours of GLA exclusive of DCA (hrs/wk)


      • TBEC refers to total building energy utilised for all landlord and tenancy areas.
      • CPEC refers to total energy utilised for the carpark area (which is not air-conditioned) and typically covers artificial lighting, lifts, mechanical ventilation fans, sump pumps and plug loads (car washing facilities). Installations serving the whole building (such as hydraulic pumps and fire pumps) shall not be included. 
      • DCEC refers to total energy utilised for operation of the Data Centre equipment and for controlling its indoor environment (air-conditioning, mechanical ventilation, lighting and plug loads).
      • GFA (excluding carpark) refers to total built up gross area of the building excluding the carpark.
      • DCA refers to gross area of the Data Centre.
      • GLA refers to the total functional use area for commercial purposes such as office, retail, cafeteria, restaurant, gymnasium and club house inside the building but excluding all common areas and service areas. The sum of GLA, common areas and service areas should equal the GFA excluding car park.
      • FVR is the weighted floor vacancy rate of office, retail and other functional spaces of GLA. The floor vacancy rate of GLA is equal to the non-occupied lettable area divided by the GLA, in terms of percentage.
      • WOH is the weighted weekly operating hours of GLA exclusive of the DCA.


      • A building has GLA of 5400 m2 comprising 5000 m2 office (including 80 m2 data centre) and 400 m2 retail areas of which the corresponding operating hours are 55, 168 and 65 hrs/wk respectively.
      • Then WOH = [(5000-80)*55 + 400*65] / (5400-80) = 55.75 hrs/wk.

    • K-7: Energy & Water Consumption of Lease Units - When the GBI rating is assessed, do we need to consider the energy and water consumptions of these Leased Units in the calculations i.e. BEI?

      A: Yes. Note that GBI rating system is for the whole building and not for Core & Shell application only.

    • K-8: How is BEI calculated for an office tower if the tenant fit-outs (A/C and lights) are not provided? Is it possible to exclude the NLA and calculate the BEI based on the reduced floor area?

      A: The NRNC rating tool requires energy consumption of landlord and tenants to be calculated / simulated in order to compute the projected BEI for DA submission. Core & Shell designs are not permitted under the current GBI rating system; hence DA submission must include the design loads for all areas. The GBI tools call for CVA to be conducted when the building is either at least 50% occupied or 12 months after CCC. This requirement is intended to enable fit-outs to take place for the CVA to be conducted meaningfully. Non fit-out areas (termed as vacant areas) at CVA stage are to be excluded under the BEI formula.

    • K-9: For a retail shopping mall, my client is considering not providing lighting for the retail shop spaces in the initial fit-out. This is because the vast majority of tenants will be doing their own ID for these shops and any lighting provided in the initial fit-out would be rendered surplus to requirements.

      In order to capture lighting power load for the purposes of our BEI calculation would it be agreeable for us to propose a 'lighting power budget' in the tenancy agreements for these retail units? Essentially each tenant's ID fit-out would be required to conform to a set W/m2 lighting budget which would enable us to calculate the total power consumption of the project for the purposes of EE5.

      A: The NRNC rating tool requires energy consumption of landlord and tenants to be calculated / simulated in order to compute the projected BEI for DA submission. If the provision of a ‘lighting power budget’ load together with typical lighting layout arrangement can meet this computational requirement then it is acceptable.

    • K-10: BEI degradation due to equipment aging over time. We seek clarification if there is such consideration of leniency in point allocation on the targeted BEI due to equipment aging over time. The degradation is in line with the inherent deterioration on system efficiency (partly or as a whole) despite regular scheduled maintenance being conducted as per manufacturer’s recommendations.

      A: GBI emphasises on sustainable maintenance and requires building to perform efficiently at all times, and believes that degradation can be addressed with proper maintenance, replacement and upgrade.

    • K-11: Refer to EE5, does the BEI calculation include the power consumption of machine / equipment in a factory?

      A: For factory rating, please refer to the INC or IEB rating tools where the factory process machinery is assessed under Energy Use Intensity (EUI) and not Building Energy Intensity (BEI).

    • K-12: BEI of Airport - In order to calculate the Building Energy Index of an airport, can we take out the energy consumption of the baggage handling system? The reason being this is the same principle employed in taking out data center energy consumption as it will distort the overall energy consumption. If the baggage handling system energy consumption is taken out, the BEI calculated after normalizing to 2700 hours will enable a more accurate benchmark to be established with other buildings.

      A: Please note that the terminology of BEI is Building Energy Intensity and not Index. For airports, the GBIF should opt for Airport BEI and not use the Office BEI formula. In this regard, all airport systems must be included. The GBIF or Owner's Coordinator shall collate BEI for existing airports and propose improvements to justify EE5 credit score based on improvement percentage using the Office BEI formulation as template (ie normal MS1525 BEI = 200 to 220; credits start at 150 with improvement of at least 25% onwards)

    • K-13: With FAQ K-4 on BEI for hospitals. Please confirm BEI for hospitals is based on 168 operational hours/week and hence equation in FAQ K-6 becomes; BEI = [(TBEC CPEC DCEC) / (GFA(excluding carpark) DCA GLA * FVR)] * [168/WOH]

      A: The hospital BEI is for a 24/7 operation which equals to 168 operational hours/week. The WOH adjustment factor does not apply for 24/7 operation ie 168/WOH or WOH/168 is unity.

    • K-14: I understand that for Data Centre, instead of BEI, PUE is used. Can I know the equivalent credit points for PUE?

      A: Please refer to the GBI NRNC Data Centre Tool. Data Centres, in lieu of BEI values, use the PUE metrics; where PUE (Power Usage Effectiveness) = Ratio of Total Facilities Power to IT Equipment Power. Use BEI or PUE if either building or IT equipment power use constitutes more than 75% of the total energy use. Otherwise, calculate both BEI and PUE with the lower point score being applicable for award of points. Corresponding Credit Points to PUE values are:

      PUE ! 1.9 = 2 points;
      PUE ! 1.8 = 3 points;
      PUE ! 1.7 = 5 points;
      PUE ! 1.6 = 8 points;
      PUE ! 1.5 = 10 points;
      PUE ! 1.4 = 12 points;
      PUE ! 1.3 = 15 points.

    • K-15: We understand that for data centre projects, BEI would be replaced with PUE: Power Usage Effectiveness; which is defined as Total Power Supply to IT Load / Total IT load usage. Does the PUE take into account offices in the data centres and other misc. buildings in data centres or the data centre rooms only.

      A: The data centre rooms per se shall use PUE while the office areas shall use BEI with the lower of the 2 credit score being applicable.

    • K-16: Is there any default COP for GDC plants if no information is forthcoming from the GDC operator?

      A: If such info is not available, you may then use the default GDC Plant COP of 3.8

    • K-17: For "open air" pedestrian mall (no roof), can it be assessed as a naturally ventilated mall?

      A: Assessment of the building floor plate will be for the built-up portion consisting of permanent structures.

    • M-1: If reusable system formwork is used to contribute to the Materials Reuse and Selection criteria should the material cost be captured as the system formwork cost or the cost of conventional form that the system formwork is substituting?

      A: You may use the cost of the system formwork in conjunction with the explanation given in the relevant Design Reference Guide.

    • M-2: Storage & Collection of Recyclables - Our system uses chutes that are linked to a pipe and a storage container. We also have a dual and even 3 chute systems. The chutes are normally clearly labeled as; General Waste and Recyclable Waste. The user will have to throw all mixed recyclables into the Recyclable Chute and it will be vacuumed and then stored in a container. The container will be hauled to an offsite facility for sorting and recycling. In the dual chute system, if the user deposits the material into the wrong chute, the system cannot rectify this error. Currently, there is no system in a building that can intelligently sort garbage. This requires MRF which is an offsite facility. The system also cannot sort garbage on site because the container is airtight and not meant to be opened on site. Even in a conventional method of collecting recyclable materials, there is a fair amount of contamination (wrong material in the wrong bin) that occurs. Therefore, we kindly refer your attention to MR 1 & MR 5 where the use of the word minimum is of particular significance, as quoted "The waste that should be collected as a minimum should include aluminium, paper, plastics, glass, corrugated cardboard and batteries". Does the word "minimum" in the excerpt above mean the building must have separate bins for the (minimum) 6 materials? Can it be mixed into one bin instead whether using the AWCS or conventional method?

      A: GBI reiterates the need to understand the objective of each criteria for interpretation. The objective is to be able to sort out a minimum of 6 materials and in a most practical way. For example. if the expected quantity of paper and corrugated cardboard can be contained in one bin, then there is no need for 2 bins at each collection point / floor to separately deposit these 2 items. These 2 items can subsequently be separated at the main sorting area. Hence, normally a total of 3 bins would suffice at each depository location. Keep in mind that in line with the GBI objective, the materials must be recyclable. Allowing organic or liquid waste to be mixed into say paper waste or even glass waste such as bottles would immediately turn it into general waste as most recyclers would not accept contaminated materials which require an extra step of cleaning before they can be reused. Materials can be mixed provided they can be readily separated before being recycled. This applies whether it is Automated Waste Collection Systems (AWCS) or conventional.

    • M-3: Sustainable Timber - In order to contribute to MR6, timber flooring needs to comply with FSC or MTCS. There are three different certificates issued under FSC which are: a. Forest management b. Chain of custody c. Controlled wood. There are two different types of certificates are issued under MTCS which are: a. Forest management b. Chain of custody. Please advise if the timber flooring supplier needs to produce each of the above certificates in order to score under GBI.

      A: All the certificates listed may be furnished at the CVA submission stage, but as a minimum, copies of the Chain of Custody documents are required.

    • M-4: Sustainable Timber - We seek clarification that listing the requirement for ‘certified wood’ in the tenant guidelines will meet the criterion without the compulsory need for tenants to follow, so long as the base building has met this criterion to achieve the point.

      A: Physical compliance with MR4 (and related credits in other GBI rating tools) for Sustainable Timber will be assessed at CVA stage; i.e. wood used for the base building as well as the tenancy fit-outs will all need to meet the credit requirement. As for tenancy areas not fitted out at CVA stage, these will be treated as vacant areas (which will be verified in future for compliance at the GBI certification renewal stage after 3 years). Therefore, the GBIF is advised to include requirement for certified timber in the tenancy / leasing agreement for full compliance if this credit point is to be scored.

    • M-5: Sustainable Timber - 1. We are from a wood flooring supplier in Malaysia and wish to seek clarification on the following criteria; RNC MR6 Sustainable Timber stipulates "Where 50% of wood-based materials and products used are certified". Please elaborate how does GBI calculate 50% of wood-based materials and products? Based on product value or quantity?
      2. Can a developer be awarded 2 points under this criteria if say, the wood-based products used in the building are only partly certified? For example, certified cabinet / wardrobe, wood doors and sub-flooring but non-certified wood flooring.

      A: 1. Criteria point in this instance is based on the value (50%) of the total wood-based material used in the project.
      2. Yes, IF at least 50% of the wood-based products used are certified and in compliance with Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) or Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS). Copies of Chain of Custody (COC) documents from FSC or MTCS, as relevant, are required as proof of compliance during the CVA stage.

    • M-6: Refrigerants & Clean Agents - We are a local manufacturer of fire fighting equipment. One of our fire suppression system uses Inert gas - mixtures of Argon(Ar) and Nitrogen(N2) as agent to put out fire. Under GBI NRNC MR7 criterion, since Argon and Nitrogen are natural gases, does this mean we can score the full 2 points on this criterion?

      A: The project will score 2 points for this criterion only if both the refrigerant AND the clean agent (fire suppression system) used are of non-synthetic (i.e. natural) products.

    • N-1: Development Density & Community Connectivity - Our proposed project is located within a 10km by 10km area which is gazetted as a transportation area and no residential developments are permitted within 1 km radius. Can we seek an exemption to the requirement for Development Density and score the full credit points by only having at least 10 basic services?

      A: There are few mandatory criteria in the NRNC or any other GBI tool; hence there is no exemption for the Development Density criterion if this credit cannot be scored.

    • N-2: In our scoring calculation, we wish to use the development plan of the whole site (though construction will be in 3 phases), since this would meet several criteria and enable the project to score a significant number of credit points, e.g. component of commercial and community development, percentage of landscape with native species, bus terminal etc. However, by the time the first 2 phases are completed, all these amenities would still be under construction. Our question is, would we have problem getting CVA since the said site features are still under construction during CVA? Or, shall we delay the CVA until the whole site amenities are developed?

      A: For CVA, all amenities, commercial & community development, percentage of landscape, and bus terminal as required under the GBI Tool would need to be completed in order to score the necessary targeted points provisionally given at the DA stage.

    • N-3: Community Connectivity - Will provision of a surau/prayer room instead of a surau be eligible for this point?

      A: Prayer room provision is acceptable (to suit the size of the development) provided it is open for public use.

    • N-4: Community Connectivity - For a showcase bungalow application, is the requirement for a surau or masjid near to the site still necessary? Or can the 1 credit point be earned if there is a religious room in the bungalow?

      A: A showcase bungalow will eventually be sold and occupied and as such is still treated as a normal bungalow. Provision of a religious room in the bungalow does not qualify. Note that credit is awarded as an encouragement to select sites close to basic community amenities and the planning of new residential areas to encourage the provision of local amenities.

    • N-5: QLASSIC - Can CONQUAS be used in lieu of QLASSIC?

      A: NO. Please note that QLASSIC can be applied for even after completion of a project.

    • N-6: We are the facilitator for a project in KL which is under construction now. Our client has decided to register for GBI certified rating for his building. The building construction reached the 3rd floor for this 50 storey building. In order to score 1 point for QLASSIC, what are the documents we need to furnish for Design Assessment?

      A: The requirements to qualify for the QLASSIC point:
      1. Contract to state clearly that construction quality shall be not less than a QLASSIC score of 70 and specifications shall follow tolerances as stated in CIS7
      2. Type of construction method statement. e.g Precast concrete structure, hollow core slabs, etc
      3. Letter in advance to apply to CIDB to inform them that this project will be applying for QLASSIC assessment and the areas of assessment.
      4. Project Quality Plan to be submitted.
      5. Method statement to clearly state that all materials, components, fixtures and fittings to comply to relevant Malaysian Standards in the specifications

    • N-7: Greenery & Roof - a. Can artificial grass be considered as vegetated roof in order to fulfill the requirements in SM 12? b. Should we consider green area at other levels beside roof in the total roof area tabulations?

      A: a. No. b. No.

    • N-8: Greenery & Roof - Is driveway within the site boundary considered as hardscape?

      A: Yes.

    • N-9: SRI Value - Solid anodized aluminum sheet has been specified for a roof application and the architect requested for the SRI value. The European manufacturer has forwarded a thermal emittance test report which according to the architect was not sufficient. (The manufacturer is the world largest anodizer with 40 years Experience in the market and has never been confronted with this specific request). My question is in what way is the SRI important for the green qualification of a building? And what is the difference between the thermal emittance and the SRI?

      A: The architect is absolutely right to ask for the SRI value as elaborated hereunder; For a surface to stay cool, it needs two key attributes: reflectivity and emissivity. Reflectivity measures how well a material bounces back radiation. But since all surfaces absorb some heat, we also need to consider emissivity, or how good a surface is at radiating heat back out into space. The ‘solar reflectance index’ (SRI), defined by ASTM E 1980, incorporates both reflectivity and emissivity. The combination of reflectivity and emissivity means that light-coloured polymeric roof membranes and coatings, which are good emitters of heat, tend to perform better than metallic surfaces, which can be more reflective but which heats up more because of its low emissivity. Please refer to Table 1 for better understanding of the 2 terms.

      Material Emissivity Reflectance SRI
      Typical New Gray Concrete 0.9 0.35 35
      Typical Weathered* Gray Concrete 0.9 0.20 19
      Typical New White Concrete 0.9 0.7 86
      Typical Weathered* White Concrete 0.9 0.4 45
      New Asphalt 0.9 .05 0
      Weathered Asphalt 0.9 .10 6
      * Reflectance of surfaces can be maintained with cleaning. Typical pressure washing of cementious materials can restore reflectance close to orginal value. Weathered values are based on no cleaning. Table 1: Solar Reflectance index (SRI) for Standard Paving Materials

    • N-10: Heat Island Effect: Hardscape - We will be using stamped concrete pavement in our building perimeter driveway & ramp but unfortunately our contractor is unable to provide the SRI value as there is no test done for this material. Please advise how or where can this be tested?

      A: SRI is a measure of the solar reflectivity of the product. If a material chosen has no SRI, we can generally accept the SRI of a similar material and finishes / colour. Concrete does a very good job of reflecting solar energy. For the stamped concrete, and assuming it is also coloured, you may use the SRI value of 0.4 to 0.5, depending on colour. The lighter the colour, the higher the figure.

    • N-11: Stormwater Design – Quantity and Quality Control - Currently MSMA does not take into cognizance the reduction of water run-off from green roofs. Can the assumptions in Table 2.2 in the enclosed New Zealand Stormwater Practice Note be adopted for GBI calculations? In this table, green roofs, wooden decks, pervious paving and swimming pools are considered self-mitigation areas that do not require additional mitigation. Alternatively, can the enclosed Maryland ESD Computation that considers green roofs and permeable pavements as alternative surfaces with corresponding reduced RCN (runoff curve number) be used? LEED accepts calculation methods in this guide for compliance to the Stormwater Design credit.

      A: MSMA requirements must be complied with for the 1st Credit point. Additional credit points rewarded are performance-based for GBIF to demonstrate compliance. Foreign guidelines do not apply unless specifically permitted.

    • N-12: Stormwater Design – Quantity and Quality Control - We request GBI to set a minimum quality standard on the storm-water quality and clarify that this credit is meant for Post-Development. It will be unfair to award the same point to a project which removes, for example, only 20% TSS and project that uses more stringent measures of removing 80% TSS.

      A: So long as MSMA compliance is achieved, the credit is given. Subsequent revision of the tool may place this under pre-requisite with no credit allocated. The issue of fairness does not arise as subscribing to sustainability should not limit any good practice beyond minimal requirements.

    • N-13: Worker’s Amenities: - During design stage, can we just spec into the contractor’s tender requirements that they have to provide the site amenities plan during construction? It will be very difficult for us to provide this for DA submittal. It is typically up to the contractor to determine the locations of site staff and worker’s amenities and health & hygiene facilities.

      A: The GBIF should not mix up construction contract requirements with GBI credit requirements. If the project desires to score for this credit, then the GBIF and Design Team must ensure that the compliant requirements are clearly stipulated in the tender documentation and specifications, and not the other way around.

    • N-14: Public Transportation Access - For RNC tool, in the event that our development (a single family bungalow unit) will not be using public transportation even if readily available due to safety reasons (will be justified in later stages), is it possible that the 12 points stated here be transferable to Innovation Criteria instead?

      A: As of RNC Version 3, if the conditions of a criteria are not met, the points are not transferable.

    • N-15: Public Transportation Access - Our project has constructed a ferry hub to access to Singapore. Can this be classified as a public transport hub?

      A: Yes, it can be considered as a Transport Hub if there is another mode of transport (e.g. Bus) that intersects and connects. Note the need to also comply with other requirements of having adequate covered waiting area.

    • N-16: Public Transportation Access - "Dedicated Transport Terminal within the Residential Area with covered seating and waiting area for a minimum of 10% of the total number of residential units of the designated residential area". Will it be enough just to erect a transport terminal (the building itself), that fulfills the requirements above?

      A: Yes. Please refer to the Design Reference Guide for details.

    • N-17: Green Vehicle Priority - How to define 5% of Full-Time Equivalent occupants? Eg. if we comply to DBKL for X nos. of car parks, can we provide 5% of X nos. as complying to SM9?

      A: Yes, your calculation may be based on Statutory requirements and / or take 5% of the total number of carparks provided to comply with SM9, whichever is the lesser.

    • N-18: Parking Capacity - For NRNC SM10, Parking Capacity, the architect has calculated the parking capacity required to be 1200. But since the project is located near a transportation hub, the client obtained a waiver of 50% for the parking capacity from local authority, reducing it to 600. A total of 670 parking spaces are now provided, hence I would like to ask if this still complies with GBI requirement? From calculation they are way below the parking capacity but after the waiver there are 70 excess parking.

      A: Yes, this fulfills SM10 requirement.

    • N-19: NREB SM1 Energy Audit Report - What levels of energy audit report are we expected to provide?

      A: The Energy Audit Report should serve its intended purpose of retrofitting / upgrading the existing building to achieve energy efficiency thereby contributing to greening the building. You may refer to the following websites for scope of energy audit services; www.maesco.org.my and/or www.greentechmalaysia.my

    • O-1: Rainwater Harvesting - What should the potable water consumption be based on? Can we assume just the water requirements for irrigation for this?

      A: No. Potable water consumption refers to the total building water usage including domestic water consumption by building occupants, general cleaning and washing, air conditioning cooling tower make up, swiimming pool and water features, and landscape irrigation

    • O-2: Rainwater Harvesting - Cooling tower makeup water can be quite substantial for a non-residential building. For rainwater harvesting, can we exclude cooling tower makeup water when computing potable water consumption to arrive at the percentage reduction?

      A: Cooling tower makeup water shall be included if using treated (potable) water taken from the water mains. For buildings with water-cooled air conditioning system serving not less than 50% of the NLA, the percentage in reduction of potable water consumption as denoted under NRNC WE1, shall be halved; i.e. 1 point for 7.5% or more reduction, and 2 points for 15% or more reduction.

    • O-3: Rainwater Harvesting - The latest RNC reference guide states that this credit covers common property usage only which is mainly irrigation and cleaning of common areas. For the cleaning usage, is it acceptable to estimate the base water consumption by estimating the number of 1-litre pails of water used? If not, please provide calculation assumptions for base conditions.

      A: Common area usage should include the following: Public toilets, Gym toilets, general cleaning, swimming pool usage, landscape water, pantry for community halls, etc. Water consumption values used should be obtained from authoritative source/s such as Code of Practice etc., and sample case studies are provided in the GBIF Course.

    • O-4: For Water Recycling can I consider condensate water (from AHU/FCU) as potable water?

      A: No, the criteria calls for recycling of waste water and condensate water is not classified as waste water.

    • O-5: Water Efficient Landscaping - In order to avoid paying for a dual piping system, and yet be able to gain this credit, can we divert all the rainwater that is harvested to the irrigation of the landscape by using less efficient irrigation methods??

      A: Landscape irrigation requirement is dependent on the type of plants and may be affected by the use of drip or sprinkler irrigation systems. You do not superficially pump up the irrigation water consumption for point chasing as this will do an injustice to your client and your professionalism.

    • O-6: Water Efficient Landscaping - For compliance with the requirement of “not using potable water at all for irrigation”, can there be temporary potable supply for the first year for the purpose of ensuring the plants survive until the roots are matured? There is an allowance in LEED for this.

      A: GBI is a performance based tool and encourages you to submit innovative, practical and well substantiated rationale for consideration.

    • O-7: Water Efficient Fittings - 1. Can the flow rates below be used for the base condition? 2. Can the values below for fixture usage per occupant be used for the water consumption calculations? If not, please advise what the values should be.

      A: Flowrates and values used should be obtained from authoritative source/s such as Code of Practice etc., and sample case studies are provided in the GBIF Courses.

    • O-8: For the Water Efficient Fittings calculation, our client would like to clarify the definition of 'annual potable water consumption'. Does this include (i) all fittings or (ii) those that they replace with water efficient fittings for the base condition?

      A: The savings shall be based on consumption from fittings where water efficient fittings could be applied namely water closets, showers, wash basin taps, sink taps, ablution and bib taps.

    • O-9: Water Efficient Fittings - For an office building, if we use flow limiter rather than use efficient fittings to reduce flowrate for water tap, can we still score the credit points?

      A: On-site installation of flow/pressure limiters do not qualify for WE4 credits. Note that flow/pressure limiter forms an integral part of a water efficient fitting assembly and GBI recognises the performance test of such water efficient fitting assembly by any recognised independent international, national or other thirdparty testing reports. Refer also FAQ O-10. However, for existing buildings where additional devices installed can result in the reduction in potable water consumption, then points will be awarded corresponding to the qualifying percentage reduction over existing 3 year average water consumption record as depicted in WE4.

    • O-10: WELS CERTIFICATION - Is it true that the GBI rating tools require WELS certification to achieve points for water efficient fittings?

      A: No. You do not specifically need to have WELS certification to score points for water efficient fittings. GBI scores are based on the performance of the fittings and will recognise any independent international, national or other third-party testing reports.

    • O-11: Waterless Urinals - What is the provision of the quantity of waterless urinals that is required to achieve the point under Innovation? Is provision of 50% of the total number of quantity of urinals sufficient to achieve this credit?

      A: NO. The requirement calls for ALL urinals. However, at least 90% may be acceptable if valid reasons given are acceptable to GBI.

    • P-1: Is there a latest list of approved Innovation items?

      A: Updated list of approved Innovation items including qualification details is as appended below:

         Approved List of Innovations (10 July 2014)

      Innovation in Design & Enviromental Design Initiatives Qualification Details NR R
      Advance Air Filtration Serve at least 50% of NLA. Tick  
      Air & Dirt Separator System for Chilled Water System Provide for 100% of chilled water system. Tick  
      Auto Condenser Tube Cleaning System Provide for 100% of chilled water system (water-cooled chillers) Tick  
      Bioswales Provide for at least 25% of building perimeter. Tick Tick
      Central Conveyance System (waste or material handling) Serve at least 50% of NLA for NR and 100% of all residential units Tick Tick
      Central Vacuum System Serve at least 50% of NLA. Tick Tick
      Charging Station for Hybrid or Electric Car 5% of the total parking spaces provided, up to a maximum of 20 nos. Tick Tick
      Cold Aisle Containment System Provide for entire Data Centre air-conditioning system (applicable to Data Centre building only) Tick  

      Co-generation / Tri-generation

      Serve at least 90% of the building's cooling capacity. Tick  
      Condensate Water Recovery Account for at least 50% of installed AHU/FCUs. Tick  
      CUI ≤ 0.45 m³/m² Tick Tick
      Dessicant Heat Recovery Wheel Account for at least 50% of total building exhaust air system Tick  
      Dynamic Balancing Control Valve System for chilled water piping system Provide for 100% of chilled water system. Tick  
      Electrochromic Glazed Façade Provide for at least 10% of glazed façade. Tick Tick
      Energy Efficient Appliances Provide only 5-Star Energy Efficient Appliances approved by Suruhanjaya Tenaga (ST) example air-conditioners & refrigerators. Tick
      External Shading Devices Provide for at least 50% of glazed façade. Tick Tick
      Fire System Water Recycling during regular testing Provide for all Sprinkler and Wet Riser systems.
      Not applicable to Hose Reel system.
      Tick Tick
      Heat Pipe Technology Provide for at least 75% of PAHUs for purpose of RH control/improvement. Tick  
      Herb Garden Provide for at least 10% of landscape area or 20m2 whichever is the larger. For single residential dwelling provide for at least 25% of landscape area. Tick Tick
      Industrialised Building System Achieve CIDB IBS score ≥ 50% Tick  
      LED Façade Lighting Only where façade lighting is mandated by Local Authority Tick Tick
      Light Pipes Provide for at least 1% of NLA. Tick Tick
      Mixed Mode / Low Energy Ventilation System Serve at least 10% of NLA. Tick  
      Non-Chemical Water Treatment System Provide for all cooling tower circuits (Note that chw circuit need not be included) Tick  
      On-site Composting Facility / Composting Bins Recycle landscape and organic waste (kitchen waste) to meet at least 50% of landscape fertilizer needs. Tick
      Parking Guidance System Provide for non-allocated car park bays. Tick  
      Real time energy and water usage display and other educational features/facilities To be installed in prominent public area Tick Tick
      Recycling of Condensate Water for evaporative cooling Evaporative cooling to include use of all condensate water recovered from at least 50% of installed AHU/FCUs. Tick  
      Refrigerat Leak Detection & Recovery Facility Provide refrigerant leak detection coverage for every chiller in accordance with specialist vendor's recommendations to effect automatic refrigerant pumpdown to external storage tank sized to recover full refrigerant charge for the largest chiller within each plantroom. Tick  
      Regenerative Lift Provide for at least 50% of installed lifts. Tick Tick
      Self-cleaning Façade Provide for at least 90% of façade area. Tick Tick
      Sewer Waste Recycling System Applicable to plant installed within building to recycle sewer waste into fertilizer products, e.g. pellets. Tick Tick
      Solar Hot Water System Provide for all showers. Tick Tick
      Solar Thermal Cooling Generate at least 10% of total cooling capacity. Tick  
      Thermal / PCM / Thermal Mass Storage System Account for at least 25% of total cooling capacity. Tick  
      Turbine Ventilators Provide for all applicable roof (pitched roof). Tick Tick
      Vacuum Degasser Cleaning System for chilled water piping system Provide for 100% of chilled water system. Tick  
      Vertical Green Wall system Provide for at least 10% of external wall/façade. Note that vertical greenery which is not an integral part of building façade may be included in the total greenery computation. Tick Tick
      Waterless Urinals Provide for all urinals. Tick  

      Footnote: NR includes INC & IEB

    • P-2: Can exemplary performance be considered for innovation points? For example, would an innovation point be granted if the softscape coverage is 30%, which is one step up the 25% coverage to score the maximum 4 points for Credit SM4 Open Spaces, Landscaping & Heat Island Effect (RNC tool)?

      A: An appeal for innovation points may be submitted but it will be unlikely to be given unless the increase is very substantial.

    • P-3: Our development has a lot of mature trees which we would like to incorporate / preserve as the development landscape. Are we entitled to an innovation credit, e.g. if we were to preserve 10% of existing greenery?

      A: Preservation of existing trees will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis with regards to the impact achieved and not merely on the percentage of existing greenery. Applicant is required to submit details and justification for GBIAP’s consideration.

    • P-4: External Shading Devices - Our marketing gallery is built around a tree which has been investigated and certified as healthy by FRIM. The criteria of scoring external shading devices is to provide external shading devices for at least 50% of the glazed façade. The passive design has approximately 40% external shading. The inner glazed façade has natural shading from the tree. Can the shading provided by the tree be considered as an external shading effect?

      A: If the rationale is for provision as shading device, tree shading (and adjacent tall building shadow shading) are not deemed to be 'permanent', and therefore do not contribute to the innovation point for External Shading Devices.

    • P-5: Vertical Green Wall - The requirement for vertical green wall is to provide at least 10% of external wall / façade with greenery. For a façade that is 95% glazed, will the effort of providing vertical green wall on all the fencing contribute to the vertical green wall requirement?

      A: Fencing wall is not considered as part of the building facade. However, vertical greenery on fencing wall can contribute to SM12.

    • P-6: Can we get a point for innovation in RNC, if we install spilt unit with inverter technology in every condo instead of using conventional split units? This is to ensure more energy efficient appliances are used.

      A: For RNC, GBI encourages the non-usage of air-conditioning. Hence, use of any types of air-conditioner will not qualify for innovation point. Please note that for home appliances, the government has already developed the Energy Star Rating scheme which includes Split Units and the use of 5-star rated air conditioning units together with other enery efficient appliances could be considered

    • P-7: For RNC Innovation point, can we score a point if we provide air-con system with R410 environment friendly refrigerant for each unit?

      A: For RNC, GBI encourages the non-usage of air-conditioning. Hence, use of any type of air-conditioners will not qualify for innovation point. Please also note that R410 is a HFC refrigerant with zero ODP (Ozone Depletion Potential) but a high GWP (Global Warming Potential).

    • P-8: For our Semi-D project, we plan to install solar water heater for every unit? Will this entitle us to one innovation credit?

      A: Innovation credit may be considered only if solar water heater is provided for all bathrooms.

    • P-9: For water closet installed in every condo unit, a manufacturer claims to have a super smooth surface to reduce stains for effortless cleaning up and prevent germs; thereby using less water and detergent to clean up the toilet. They have a green label certificate as well. Is it possible to be entitled to an innovation point?

      A: This product does not qualify for additional innovation point. Its relevant water saving features will contribute to the reduction on use of potable water under the WE (Water Efficiency) criteria.

    • P-10: Our development has a hose reel fire system for the residential buildings and sprinkler system for 2 floors of car parks. Are we eligible for an innovation point under Fire System Water Recycling During Regular Testing?

      A: Water recycling must be provided for both Wet Riser system AND Sprinkler system where these are installed. Note that for high rise residential buildings exceeding 30.5m, Wet Riser systems are required but Sprinkler systems are not necessarily. If water recycling is incorporated for the Wet Riser system serving the whole building AND the Sprinkler system serving the Car parks then this conforms to the credit requirement. If this building is less than 30.5m i.e. no Wet Riser system is provided, then recycling of the Sprinkler system serving the Car parks qualifies for the innovation point. Please note that water recycling during regular testing is not applicable for hose reel fire systems.

    • P-11: We have a query on the denial of an innovation point for "Fire System Water Recycling". During the consultation session, we clarified that there is no sprinkler system in the project so the recycling is for the wet riser system only. This issue was not brought up at all during the site inspection. Kindly clarify as there are no notes in the CVA Results for this credit.

      Please note that the GBIAP is the final body that approves the award of points for GBI criteria and as such can overrule any inadvertent oversight by the GBI Certifier be it during consultation session or site inspection.

      For this particular innovation point on Fire System Water Recycling, the GBIAP has ruled that water recycling for fire system applies only to the fire sprinkler system during regular monthly testing where the pumps have to demonstrate their performance to meet approved flowrates. Note that recycling water from the sprinkler flow switch test pipes and/or testing of pressure switches to activate pumps (both of which constitute a very much smaller water volume) are encouraged but by themselves will not be eligible for the innovation credit. Similarly, for the Wet Riser system, recycling of water from pump test activation of pressure switches do not qualify for this credit. It is to be noted that testing of the WR outlets at a pressure of 75psi will require physical water spray distance for verification and hence the water is not recycled.
      However, if you feel that your particular WR system installation is such that the full pump water flow can be recycled during testing, then please submit your piping schematic and installation photos for our consideration and verification.

    • P-12: Can a project score an Innovation point under Fire System Water Recycling During Regular Testing if a wet riser is installed for only 1 of 12 blocks in a residential development? (e.g. this is one high-rise and eleven low-rise blocks in the development)

      A: If the whole development is registered under one certification, and at least one of the buildings is installed with either wet riser or sprinkler system or both systems and water recycling during regular testing is incorporated then the innovation point is given. However, if the development is submitted under separate certifications, then only the building with the required system is eligible while the others are not.

    • P-13: Can syphonic rainwater downpipes qualify for innovation point?

      A: No.

    • P-14: Does the provision of bicycle racks qualify for an Innovation point?

      A: Can be considered if bicycle use is part of the overall Transportation Plan for building occupants and visitors, e.g. provision of bicycle lanes, showers and locker rooms for cyclists must also be included.

    • P-15: We would like to enquire whether the following innovation points are acceptable for a commercial office suite / retail mall / service apartment application: 1. Efficient light fittings i.e. T5 / LED installed for 90% of common corridors/management spaces excluding carpark 2. Facade lighting using LED instead of floodlights

      A: For RNC Version 2, innovation point is awarded if T5 and/or LED lighting is provided for at least 90% of common spaces and the LED lighting efficacy shall not be less than 80 Lumens per Watt. However for Version 3, no innovation point will be awarded as this credited under EE4. For NRNC, use of efficient light fittings (including LED of not less than 80 Lumens per Watt) for the interior spaces will reduce the BEI value which is covered under EE5 and hence does not qualify for innovation point in this instance. For NRNC façade lighting using LED, innovation point will be awarded provided the LED lighting efficacy is not less than 120 Lumens per Watt and the total lighting load (façade and interior spaces) does not exceed MS1525 requirement calculated on Watt per sq.m of the internal floor area.

    • P-16: Electric Vehicle Charging Station - A landed property development with a total of 197 units, intends to provide 2 green parking bays equipped with EV charging station at the club house car parks. Total public car parks available are only 18 bays. Is this sufficient to earn 1 INNOVATION point under RNC? We opine the 2 green parking bays is sufficient since visitors can also charge their EV at their friend/family's house as it is a landed property development and public car park areas.

      A: Acceptable

    • P-17: We intend to propose the installation of ten (10) electric chargers for electric vehicles in a new HQ building with a FTE of 845. Is this number sufficient to fulfil GBI requirements to score this point.

      A: i) First of all, for NRNC and NREB Version 1.0, in lieu of FTE, 5% of the total parking bays is acceptable. ii) Future versions of the tool will consider provision of electric chargers to be a prerequisite to meet the green parking bay criterion. iii) Meanwhile for Version 1.0 of the tool, for charging stations to qualify for innovation point, such stations provided should be located at the relevant parking bays and be reasonably sufficient to service the number of allocated parking bays. Performance based design provision is acceptable including easy future extension to increase number of chargers to suit demand, etc.

    • P-18: Permanent Synchronous Lifts - Does the use of lifts with synchronous motor with permanent magnets qualify for an innovation credit? The reason being that the use of AC synchronous motors avoids the problem of poor power factor associated with AC asynchronous motors. This also reduces the problem of torque pulsation when operating at low frequency and low speed range. How about the use of lift with motor drive – the gearless or the planetary type? The elimination of gear can improve the energy efficiency of gear as there is no gear transmission loss. Also planetary gears are more efficient than the worm gears.

      A: Thus far only Regenerative Lifts are approved under Innovation. Gearless lifts are not entitled for an innovation credit as this technology is not new and also because EE features for lifts already contribute directly to the project's score under EE5 - Advanced Energy Efficiency.

    • P-19: Can Hybrid Destination Control System for elevator score a point under IN1 as this system increases efficiency and reduces journey times and provides security for users.

      A: Hybrid Destination Control System for elevator does not qualify for Innovation point.

    • P-20: Under IN1, there is one point that we can score for heat recovery system (contributing to at least 10% of total required capacity). I understand such a system can generally include economiser for boilers or furnaces. We propose the use of heat wheel to pre-cool outside air for use as fresh air intake for AHUs so that less energy is needed to cool the air. Can this be accepted?

      A: Where desiccant heat recovery wheels are used, these must account for at least 50% of the relevant building air exhaust system.

    • P-21: Electrostatic MERV 13 Filters - Can electrostatic MERV 13 filters qualify as an Innovation credit?

      A: Electrostatic filters - YES. MERV 13 filters alone - NO. Note that such filters must serve at least 50% NLA.

    • P-22: Atmospheric Generators - Can these qualify for an Innovation point?

      A: Facilitator to furnish details to justify consideration. Note that percentage of NLA served is also important.

    • P-23: For AHUs provided with double air filtration (primary and secondary filters), can High Efficiency Particulate Air filter (HEPA) qualify for an innovation credit as an advanced air filtration technology?

      A: No, HEPA filters if used for normal office application, will increase static losses. For certain applications such as hospitals and clean rooms, such filters may be a necessity.

    • P-24: IAQ Treatment system: Are Electrostatic filter with UV emitters eligible for 2 Innovation points (i.e. advanced filtration and IAQ treatment)? It is also stated that they should serve at least 50% of NLA but not mentioned whether for All AHUs?

      A: Eligible for 2 separate Innovation points and both must be installed in all AHUs and serving not less than 50% of NLA. The 'at least 50% NLA' is intended to allow for non installation of Electrostatic filter or UV treatment in FCUs, split units (and special justified cases) as such installation may not be practical. However, all AHUs should have such installation to provide improved IAQ for all tenants/floors and not selected tenants/floors, as the latter will constitute 'point chasing'.

    • P-25: IAQ Treatment System - Please explain why the following IAQ treatment solutions which can treat bacteria, microbial, mould and odour are not approved for GBI innovation points;
      a. Biokil treatment for AHU secondary filters
      b. Gelair (Natural tea tree oil Gel pack)

      A: As a trained GBIF, you would be expected to evaluate and advise your client on the merits and demerits of 'potential' innovative items and not merely base such on claims by vendors. Meanwhile, GBI will continue to update the listing of approved innovation items on the GBI website.

    • P-26: Would implementing an Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) Management Plan for the Construction and preoccupancy phases of the building be awarded an innovation point? The goal of IAQ management plan is: To meet or exceed the recommended control measures of the Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning National Contractors Association (SMACNA) IAQ Guidelines for Occupied Buildings under Construction, 2nd Edition 2007, ANSI/ SMACNA 008-2008 (chapter 3) Protect stored on-site and installed absorptive materials from moisture damage.

      A: No. Pre-occupancy IAQ management is already credited under EQ14 and protection of duct materials under EQ5.

    • P-27: Regarding innovation credit on provision of “Refrigerant leakage detection and recycling facilities”. Under NRNC, this must (cater for the whole main plant) whereas under NREB, it must be provided (for at least 90% of HVAC plant). Please clarify if refrigerant storage tanks must be provided for each chiller?

      A: For NRNC, refrigerant leakage detection must be provided for the whole main plant (isolated split units for example are exempted). For NREB, the 90% requirement is to cater for challenges for existing buildings with more than one main plantroom. As for the provision of refrigerant storage tanks, these should be capable of catering for the largest chiller in each main plantroom.

    • P-28: A central pneumatic waste collection system is planned for our building However, the overall development is separated into 4 phases. We will install all necessary risers and accessories in our building but the central plant room will only become operational after construction of a later phase. Can we still score this point?

      A: No point will be given if the system is not operational at CVA.

    • P-29: Can I consider Pneumatic Tube System (PTS) in a hospital as a vacuum system?

      A: Note that PTS in hospital application is not similar to a CVS (Central Vacuum System). PTS is a common system in any modern hospital hence no innovation point will be granted.

    • P-30: Petrol Pumping Station - We intend to apply for GBI NRNC and NREB certification for petrol pumping stations and wish to enquire on innovation points for the following;
      1. Oil Water Separator
      2. Liquid tight pavements to capture potential spills
      3. Double walled tanks and pipes installed at stations built in environment sensitive areas
      4. Robust leak detection strategy commensurate with the environment risk strategy around each station
      5. Rainwater harvesting system (unusual for petrol station)
      6. CO2 and refrigerant leakage detection indicators at the shop areas
      7. Renewal Energy – Solar PV Panels (unusual for petrol station)

      A: Innovation points are considered for items that will exhibit or contribute significant impact to the sustainable agenda. For the listed items 1) to 4) above, these are deemed to be standard practice and/or authority safety compliance items and hence do not qualify as innovation. Items 5) and 7) are already credited under their respective main criteria, and they are certainly not unusual applications. Item 6) will be subject to submission of details for evaluation of the impact including practicality and function ability for such a provision. Due to the complexity and variant nature of petrol stations where the office areas may be very small, please attend a Consultation Session (bringing along a layout plan of the petrol station) for a more detailed discussion as to whether that particular station can be accepted for a GBI rating.

    • P-31: Can Universal Design be considered for an innovation point?

      A: Yes. Comprehensive compliance with the relevant Malaysian Standards, MS1184 (universal design and accessibility in the built environment - code of practice) and MS1331 (code of practice for access of disabled person outside buildings) may qualify for a point under IN1.

    • P-32: Can MQuit Program be considered for an innovation point?

      Yes (for existing building only). Proof of appointment of a registered consultant and MQuit Health Certification are required.

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