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Buildings competing in EPA contest save $50 million, prevent 250,000 tons of greenhouse gas emissions

EPA_ES_NBC_2014_Aggregate_Savings_v4_0

More than 5,500 buildings across the United States, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico competed in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's fifth-annual Energy Star Battle of the Buildings Competition: Team Challenge.

The buildings entered in the competition saved more than $50 million, cut their energy use by more than two billion kBtus, and prevented more than 250,000 metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions. That’s equal to the annual energy use of more than 37,000 homes.

Competitors reduced their energy use an average of 6 percent, which is an average savings of nearly $20,000 per building.

A Woodville, Ala., group of buildings, “Going Blue for Woodville,” won the top award in the category, 2015 Top Team, by cutting their average energy use by 25 percent.

The five-buildings – a town hall, community center, chapel, co-op building, and wastewater treatment plant – achieved the greatest energy reduction of 100 applicants in the category during a 12-month period. Woodville has a population of 741.

The agency is also recognizing the 2015 Top Building, the Woodville, Ala., Chapel, for an energy use reduction of 68.4 percent.

In support of Pres. Barack Obama’s Climate Action Plan, which calls for buildings to cut waste and become at least 20 percent more energy efficient by 2020, the competition targeted wasted energy in buildings and motivated building owners and occupants to improve energy efficiency, reduce harmful carbon pollution, and save money. 

This year’s theme, “Team Challenge,” featured teams of five or more buildings that worked together to reduce their energy use for one year.

Many organizations used the competition to involve staff and students in the effort.

  • Five Sears stores, who competed as team “Robinson’s Reducers," upgraded their stores' lighting and installed a remote energy monitoring system.
  • In a county outside Wilmington, Del., children from 13 elementary schools teamed against older students in the county’s five middle schools and six high schools.

Energy use in commercial buildings makes up nearly 20 percent of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions at a cost of more than $100 billion per year. Thousands of businesses and organizations work with EPA’s Energy Star program to save money and prevent greenhouse gas emissions. 

The top team finishers and their percentage-based reductions in energy use are:

Top Teams

Organization

State/s

Energy Use Reduction

Going Blue for Woodville

Town of Woodville, Ala.

Ala.

24.8%

Walgreens

Burton Energy Group

Calif., Ohio, Texas, S.C.

17.5%

Remotti's Ropers

Sears Holdings Corporation

Del., N.Y., N.H., Conn., Pa.

17.3%

Robinson's Reducers

Sears Holdings Corporation

Md., N.C., Ohio

14.1%

PREI Team A

PREI

Calif., Fla., Mass., Md., Va.

11.4%

Red Clay High Schools

Red Clay Consolidated School District

Del.

11.1%

Red Clay Elementary Schools

Red Clay Consolidated School District

Del.

10.6%

Woodford County Schools

Woodford County Schools

Ky.

10.2%

Red Clay Middle Schools

Red Clay Consolidated School District

Del.

 9.9%

First Potomac - DC

First Potomac Realty Trust

District of Columbia

 9.7%

 

 

 

 

Among individual buildings, the top finishers and their percentage-based reductions in energy use include:

Top Buildings

Organization

City, State

Energy Use Reduction

Woodville Chapel

Town of Woodville

Woodville, Ala.

68.4%

CCI Center

evolveEA/Conservation Consultants Inc.

Pittsburgh, Pa.

61.4%

Putnam Foundation, Timken Museum of Art

Putnam Foundation (Timken Museum of Art)

San Diego, Calif.

50.2%

Verizon Wireless

Verizon Wireless

Inglewood, Calif.

46.5%

The Garden House at Harry P. Leu Gardens

City of Orlando

Orlando, Fla.

45.3%

13461 Sunrise Valley Drive

Liberty Property Trust

Herndon, Va.

40.1%

Verizon Wireless

Verizon Wireless

Montclair, Calif.

39.6%

TD University

TD University/TD Bank

Mt. Laurel, N.J.

37.2%

Verizon Wireless

Verizon Wireless

Arvada, Colo.

36.3%

Cupples Station

DTZ

Saint Louis, Mo.

34.9%

The competition measured energy performance for 2014.

Competitors tracked their buildings' monthly energy consumption using EPA's online energy tracking tool, Energy Star Portfolio Manager

For more information on EPA’s Energy Star program, visit energystar.gov.

Copyright 2015, Rita R. Robison, Consumer Specialist

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