Boston, Mass. -- The Boston metropolitan area continued to be ranked in the top 25 metropolitan areas of the country for Energy Star labeled buildings in 2011. Boston was ranked number 10, up from number 12 in 2010.
During 2011, 161 buildings in the Boston area, with more than 44 million square feet of floor space, earned the Energy Star designation. EPA estimates that these buildings saved $61 million in energy costs and avoided emissions equivalent to the electricity usage in 4000 homes. The Boston Metropolitan area includes Norfolk, Plymouth, Suffolk, Middlesex, and Essex Counties in Massachusetts, and Rockingham and Strafford Counties in New Hampshire.
Energy use in commercial buildings accounts for nearly 20 percent of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions at cost of more than $100 billion per year. Buildings that earn the Energy Star certification must perform in the top 25 percent of buildings nationwide compared to similar buildings and must be independently verified by a licensed professional engineer or registered architect each year. Energy Star certified buildings use 35 percent less energy than their peers.
Buildings earning Energy Star labels in the Boston metropolitan area included a wide variety of building types including banks, hotels, office buildings, retail stores, warehouses, houses of worship and senior care facilities. Notable in 2011, 25 K-12 schools earned labels. Retail companies receiving multiple labels included Target (18), Staples (17), and Sears Holding Company (6). Also notable were the number of office buildings that received labels, those under management by Boston Properties (13), CBRE New England (13), and Jones Lang LaSalle (12).
“We applaud the sound energy management and innovation shown by these companies and institutions in their efforts to reduce operating costs and energy demand,” said Curt Spalding, regional administrator of EPA’s New England office. “Energy efficiency also remains one of the most effective methods to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.”
Launched in 1992 by EPA, Energy Star is a market based partnership to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through energy efficiency. This year marks Energy Star’s 20th anniversary. Over the past 20 years, with help from Energy Star, American families and businesses have saved about $230 billion on utility bills and prevented more than 1.7 billion metric tons of carbon pollution. Today, the Energy Star label can be found on more than 60 different kinds of products, and more than 1.3 million new homes and 16,500 buildings across America have earned EPA’s Energy Star certification.