PEER Guide to Certification

Congratulations on your decision to pursue PEER for your project!

Published December 2017 / Download the PDF version

Committing to PEER is committing to a continuous improvement and verification for the overall sustainability of your electricity delivery system design and operations. PEER involves four steps:

1. Register your project through Arc by completing key forms and submitting payment.
2. Apply for PEER certification by submitting a finalized certification application for review.
3. Review. Your PEER application is reviewed by the Green Business Certification Inc. (GBCI).
4. Certify. Receive the review decision. If you’ve earned PEER certification: congratulations!

If you need assistance at any time, please contact us.

Table of Contents:



The next step is to prepare your project’s documentation application for review by GBCI. Your registration gives you access to the PEER application materials which include calculators, templates and other optional resources. Working with your project team, you will identify PEER credits to pursue and assign them to project team members. Your team will then collect information, perform calculations and analysis, and prepare documentation demonstrating your achievement of the prerequisites and your selected credits.

  • Application

    The PEER rating system includes comparisons to local benchmarks for reliability and environmental performance and these reference data sets are imbedded into the corresponding calculators provided to you. If a project is not submitted for certification within three years of its registration date, the project team must utilize calculators that have a publish date within three years of application submission. Please note: applications that are submitted for PEER certification that contain calculators that are older than three years will not be accepted. Requiring the use of recent reference data help to ensure that the project is measured against current benchmarks. At any time before submitting for certification, your team may elect to upgrade to the most current version of the calculators at your discretion.

  • PEER Coach

    While you ready your application for certification, you may have a few questions. Your registration gives project team’s direct access to a dedicated PEER Coach who will be your point of contact within GBCI. While your project’s consultant is the primary source for providing technical support about the PEER rating system to your team, the PEER Coach can direct your team to available resources and guidance that can be used while you prepare your application. PEER Coaches can also clarify PEER requirements and support complex scenarios. Your team may request a one-hour call each month with your PEER Coach to discuss your prepared questions for real time feedback. Official rulings are not issued on these calls. Remember, the PEER Coach is not a member of the project team. While your PEER Coach can provide answers to questions, they cannot complete the application on your behalf. Further, your PEER Coach is not permitted to provide recommendations on design or operational strategies that can be implemented on your project to meet PEER requirements. These are the types of functions that may be fulfilled by a consultant or other project team members.

Once your application is prepared, make sure to perform a rigorous quality check of your entire application before submitting for review. We suggest that you check that you have included all required information, and open each file to verify that you have submitted the correct document. Cross-check credits and prerequisites to make sure that you have reported common data points. Want more tips? Here are some characteristics common among high quality submissions:

  • File attachments are clearly and intuitively labeled
  • Only required documentation is submitted (if only a few pages of a large report are needed to provide the required credit/prerequisite information, highlight the relevant sections only, no need to submit more!)
  • Concise narratives are included to describe project-specific circumstances (these are really helpful for the GBCI reviewer)

All finished? Ready, set, submit!


Congratulations, it’s time to accept your review results to confirm your PEER certification!

Once you’ve accepted the final certification report you will no longer be able to submit for supplemental (appeal) reviews, or contest review decisions for specific credits or prerequisites, Please double (or triple) check that you have achieved all prerequisites and targeted credits before accepting the final certification.

Certification Levels

While all PEER-certified projects are a cut above the rest, each is assigned one of four levels of certification to acknowledge the degree of achievement. The number of points that your project earns determines the level of PEER certification that you will receive.

  • PEER Certified™: 40-49 points earned
  • PEER Silver®: 50-59 points earned
  • PEER Gold®: 60-79 points earned
  • PEER Platinum®: 80+ points earned

Promote your project

Once you’ve earned certification, it’s likely that you’ll want to tell the world. You should. PEER certification benefits your business’s bottom line and underscores your sustainability efforts. It’s a cause for celebration!

Our press team is here to support you in your marketing efforts. Contact our press team for assistance. You’ll also have the option to order formal certificates of recognition.

Project information: How GBCI handles your data

PEER-registered and certified projects are, by default, considered public projects, and thereby included in GBCI’s public project directory. A listing in this directory allows the general public and members of the media to look up your project listing and its related details.

Here’s a full list of the data and project elements that may be listed in the project directory:

  • Project name
  • Project ID
  • Physical address
  • Date of registration
  • Date of certification
  • Certification level
  • Total points earned
  • Project scorecard
  • Rating system and version
  • Owner type
  • Owner name
  • Owner organization
  • Project size (Peak MW)
  • Project size (Annual MWh)
  • Project type

All public projects also benefit from publicity opportunities: GBCI may utilize your project data to create case studies highlighting your project’s features, reference your project on our website or to the media, or create other derivative works. Information that may be used for articles, project profiles, and other features:

  • Service provider name
  • Project team member names, organizations, and titles
  • Promotional or other project photographs
  • Project strategies for certification
  • Quotations from team members

You are free to opt-out of the project directory and publicity opportunities as a private project at the time of registration. Private project listings in the project directory do NOT include any of the elements above. All private projects that earn certification will be prompted once more to transition to public status (we can’t help ourselves, we love sharing good news!). You will need to re-confirm your private status at that time if you wish to retain it. Projects that retain their “private” status after certification, cannot be marketed or represented as PEER certified to the general public. Please carefully review of the GBCI Trademark Policy and Branding Guidelines for more information.

Maintaining PEER certification

  • Annual key metric reporting:

    All PEER projects are required to report PEER key metric data to GBCI annually on the anniversary date of the award letter granting certification. Projects that fail to report key metric data to GBCI annually will be listed in the directory as “lapsed.">

  • Recertification (optional, fees apply):

    Recertification is required at least once every five years from the date in which the project achieved initial certification to maintain a current PEER certification. We encourage you to register for recertification as soon as possible upon achieving initial certification as projects will be held to the version of the rating system that is open for registration on the date the project registers for recertification. Failure to submit a recertification application within this timeframe will cause PEER certification to expire.