Construction Specification Institute, Sustainable Materials and GSAS Certification


Green Building Rating systems such as LEED and GSAS refer to CSI Divisions in the assessment of some credits/criteria. In this article we will discuss what CSI is and how it is related to LEED or GSAS Certification. This article will discuss

  1. What is CSI and what it does?
  2. What role CSI plays in Green Buildings
  3. What standards CSI have developed?
  4. How GSAS Asses Materials

2. What is CSI?

CSI is an abbreviation on construction specification institute. CSI aims to improve construction specification quality by developing and providing

  • Best practices
  • Standards
  • Professional Education
  • Certifications


2. What role CSI plays in Green Buildings?

One of the objectives of Green Buildings is to use sustainable, ecofriendly materials which have lesser Life cycle impact during construction. However all materials need not address this. For instance equipment such as Chiller, AHU, Lifts, escalators etc the energy performance is more important. Hence Green Building rating systems such as LEED and GSAS refers to CSI division to inform what construction materials have to be assessed for sustainability.

3. What products does CSI have?

CSI authors Master Format is an indexing system for construction specifications. Master Format helps architects, engineers, owners, contractors, and manufacturers classify how various products are typically used. CSI master format is referred in Green Building rating systems such as LEED and GSAS. The list of CSI Divisions can be referred from


4. How GSAS Asses Materials where CSI Divisions are referred?

GSAS Material Category includes the following criteria

  • M1 – Regional Materials
  • M2 – Responsible sourcing of Materials
  • M3 – Recycled Materials
  • M4 – Material Reuse
  • M5 Structure Reuse
  • M6 Design for Disassembly and
  • M7 Life Cycle Assessment
  • CSI Divisions is referred in M1, M2 and M3

M1 Regional Materials and M2 Responsible Sourcing of Materials asses all materials in CSI Division 3-9, 31 and 32 whereas M3 Recycled content asses CSI Division 10 Specialties as well in addition to Divisions 3-9, 31 and 32

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Bazeeth Ahamed K M

Mr. K M Bazeeth Ahamed is an USGBC LEED Faculty & consultant in Green Buildings. He has completed his Post Graduation in Mechanical Engineering from Birla Institute of Technology in 2002 and has spent 12 years in Academics, Research, MEP Contracting, Energy Audits and Green Building Consultancy.