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D.C. Upsets L.A. in EPA Ranking

Monday, March 30, 2015

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Step aside, Los Angeles, there’s a new Energy Star champion.

Washington, D.C., now tops a federal ranking of the most energy-efficient cities in terms of Energy Star building certifications, displacing Los Angeles, which had held the title for six consecutive years.

With 480 certified buildings, the D.C. metropolitan area cut its annual energy costs by $127 million in 2014, reports the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, which administers the voluntary program.

Washington D.C.
© iStock.com / jkauffeld

Washington D.C. leads EPA's list of most energy-efficient cities in terms of Energy Star certifications. 

The EPA’s “Top 25 Cities” ranking demonstrates that cities across America are “embracing energy efficiency as an effective way to save money and reduce greenhouse gas emissions that fuel climate change,” according to the EPA.

The full list appears below.

Top Energy Performers

Los Angeles came in second on the agency’s new list, with 475 buildings in 2014. The city cut annual energy costs by $155.8 million.

Los Angeles has owned the top spot on EPA's Top Cities list since the agency began keeping track in 2008. Four other metropolitan areas in California also made the list this year.

In third place is Atlanta, GA, where 328 Energy Star-certified buildings represent 69 million square feet and will save more than $55 million annually, EPA said.

New York City, with 299 buildings, secured fourth place on the new list. San Francisco, with 292 buildings, rounded out the EPA’s top five.

Energy Star Stats

By the end of 2014, more than 25,000 buildings across the country helped save nearly $3.4 billion on utility bills and prevented greenhouse gas emissions equal to the emissions from the annual electricity use of nearly 2.4 million homes, the EPA reports.

Energy Star top 10
EPA

To create the annual top cities list, the EPA tallies the number of Energy Star certified buildings for the end of the previous year within each metropolitan area, as defined by the U.S. Census.

Energy use in commercial buildings accounts for 17 percent of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions at a cost of more than $100 billion per year.

To earn EPA’s Energy Star, a commercial building must perform in the top 25 percent of similar buildings nationwide, as verified by a professional engineer or a registered architect.

Energy Star-certified buildings use an average of 35 percent less energy and are responsible for 35 percent fewer greenhouse gas emissions than average buildings.

Many common building types can earn the Energy Star, including office buildings, K-12 schools, hotels and retail stores.

The Ranking

To create the annual top cities list, the EPA tallies the number of Energy Star certified buildings for the end of the previous year within each metropolitan area, as defined by the U.S. Census.

Energy Star buildings
EPA

To earn EPA’s Energy Star, a commercial building must perform in the top 25 percent of similar buildings nationwide, as verified by a professional engineer or a registered architect.

These areas include the city itself as well as surrounding towns and suburbs.

The top 25 U.S. metro areas on the list this year, and their numbers of certified buildings, follow.

1. Washington, DC (480)

2. Los Angeles (475)

3. Atlanta (328)

4. New York (299)

5. San Francisco (292)

6. Chicago (251)

7. Dallas-Fort Worth (248)

8. Houston (235)

9. Denver (195)

10. Boston (176)

11. Phoenix (165)

12. Philadelphia (158)

13. Seattle (149)

14. Riverside, CA (127)

15. Minneapolis-St. Paul (122)

16. Charlotte (95)

17. San Diego (92)

18. Miami (90)

19. Sacramento (89)

20. Virginia Beach (81)

21. Detroit (80)

22. San Jose (70)

23. Austin (65)

23. Portland, OR (65)

24. Louisville (59)

24. Tampa (59)

25. Salt Lake City (55)

   

Tagged categories: Certifications and standards; Commercial Buildings; Energy codes; Energy Star; EPA; Government

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