EPA's "Battle of the Buildings" Puts a Smack Down on Energy Waste
by Suzette Riley
Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) ENERGY STAR program marked the midpoint of its 2011 National Building Competition: Battle of the Buildings. In the first six months of the competition alone, the competitors together have saved more than $3.7 million on utility bills and prevented 18,500 metric tons of CO2 emissions – that’s equal to the electricity used by 2,300 homes annually.
Teams from 245 buildings around the country are going head-to-head in this year’s ENERGY STAR National Building Competition to see who can reduce their energy use the most. The building with the largest percentage reduction in energy use, adjusted for weather and the size of the building, will be recognized as the winner in November.
Today EPA announced the Top Contenders for each of twelve building categories, including Boston’s Colonnade Hotel, the First Unitarian Society of Minneapolis, Office Depot in Plano, Texas, and a parking garage at the University of Central Florida.
There’s a lot we can all do in our own workplaces, as well. Actor John Corbett, the 2011 ENERGY STAR National Building Competition spokesperson, offers some tips in a new video posted today on the ENERGY STAR site www.energystar.gov/battleofthebuildings.
ENERGY STAR was started by EPA in 1992 as a market-based partnership to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through energy efficiency. Today, the ENERGY STAR label can be found on commercial and industrial buildings as well as new homes and more than 60 different kinds of products that meet strict energy-efficiency specifications set by EPA.
Last year alone, Americans, with the help of ENERGY STAR, saved about $18 billion on their energy bills while preventing greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to the annual emissions of 33 million vehicles.
For a list of National Building Competition Top Contenders and complete midpoint results for all competitors: http://www.energystar.gov/BattleOfTheBuildings