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  1. Energy-Efficient Products with the ENERGY STAR Label

    March 3, 2015 | 0 comments

    ENERGY STAR is a helpful resource when you’re looking for energy-efficient commercial building systems such as HVAC and lighting. The program outlines points to consider when investing in fixtures, water heaters, boilers, etc. All systems and products with the ENERGY STAR label are independently certified to save energy without forfeiting functionality.

    But did you know that ENERGY STAR also now certifies smaller types of products that are likely being used inside your building? (more…)


  2. A Look at Two LEED Platinum v4 Buildings

    February 17, 2015 | 0 comments

    Only two buildings in the world have achieved LEED Platinum v4 certification since it was announced in July 2013. (Through Oct. 31, 2016, commercial buildings can still apply for LEED 2009 instead of LEED v4.) The first LEED v4 building, Haworth Showroom in Beijing, was awarded LEED CI Platinum in October 2013 after earning 71 out of 110 possible LEED points. (more…)


  3. Find Inspiration for Your Next Green Building Project

    February 3, 2015 | 0 comments

    When it comes to implementing new green building initiatives, it can be overwhelming to decide which sustainability projects to tackle. But there’s no need to reinvent the wheel if you’re having problems coming up with your next green idea. Make it a team effort by asking coworkers, tenants, and occupants for their thoughts – and also take time to learn what other organizations have done to save energy and reduce their environmental footprints. (more…)


  4. Old Buildings Can Be Green Buildings

    January 20, 2015 | 0 comments

    It’s often a given that most new commercial buildings incorporate at least some energy and water efficiency initiatives into design, construction, and operation. But since the majority of commercial office facilities in the United States are existing buildings, greening “old” office buildings is just as important. (According to the U.S. Energy Information Agency, 72% of U.S. commercial buildings are more than 20 years old.) (more…)


  5. Retrocommissioning Offers Big-Time Energy Savings

    January 13, 2015 | 2 comments

    As a facility and its systems age – or as usage changes – it’s not uncommon for building performance and energy conservation to slip. Thermostats become out of calibration, occupancy sensors may not work correctly, and heating and cooling may be occurring at the same time. (more…)


  6. First 17 Multifamily Buildings Receive ENERGY STAR

    January 6, 2015 | 0 comments

    In late 2014, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that existing multifamily facilities now qualify for ENERGY STAR certification. (Previously, only new multifamily facilities could apply for certification.) As of November 2014, ENERGY STAR has officially certified the first 17 existing multifamily properties in the country.

    So why did the U.S. EPA decide to offer ENERGY STAR certification to existing multifamily housing facilities? Research indicates that multifamily properties can become up to 30% more efficient by 2020 simply by reducing the amount of energy they consume. (more…)


  7. Top 6 Green Blogs of 2014

    December 30, 2014 | 0 comments

    We’re celebrating the end of a successful year by revealing our six most-read blog posts from 2014.

    These posts resonated most strongly with you based on website traffic; below is a recap of each blog, starting with the most popular article of 2014. We’ve also included links so you can revisit the posts.

    ***** (more…)


  8. Making the Most of a Demand Response Event

    December 23, 2014 | 2 comments

    Demand response programs reward commercial building owners for reducing energy usage during times when electrical grid demand is highest. Instead of generating more power to keep up with peak loads, utilities ask participating buildings to make immediate reductions to energy use when needed – whether the adjustments are automated or done manually.

    Schneider Electric says that demand response programs in commercial buildings can earn back anywhere from 5% to 25% of annual electricity costs. But not only does a demand response program prevent strain on the electrical grid and reduce utility bills from electricity companies, it may also avoid brownouts and blackouts. (more…)


  9. Improve HVAC Energy Efficiency Year-Round

    December 16, 2014 | 2 comments

    HVAC systems are used continuously in commercial buildings. In fact, HVAC systems account for roughly 41% of total commercial building electrical usage – almost double that of any other building system – according to Alliant Energy. (Air conditioning alone represents 45% of the total peak energy use.) This obviously increases monthly utility bills, but also presents a big opportunity for regular energy savings. (more…)


  10. First Building Achieves WELL Platinum Certification

    December 9, 2014 | 2 comments

    The first building to achieve the WELL Platinum Pilot Certification from the International WELL Building Institute has been identified: the Center for Sustainable Landscapes (CSL) at the Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens in Pittsburgh.

    This facility was also the first to meet the International Living Future Institute’s Living Building Challenge, achieving Net Zero Energy Certification. (Not to mention its LEED Platinum and Four-Stars Sustainable Sites Initiative certification.)

    How did they do it? The Center for Sustainable Landscapes focused on an integrated design process that involved evaluation of end-users’ needs, along with charrettes between the project team and staff throughout the process. (more…)