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News Releases from Region 04

Charlotte on EPAs List of Cities with the Most Energy Star Certified Buildings/Energy efficiency leads to a stronger economy and healthier environment

Contact Information: 
Davina Marraccini (marraccini.davina@epa.gov)
404-562-8293, 404-562-8400

ATLANTA - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced its eighth-annual "Top Cities" list, which ranks the 25 U.S. metropolitan areas with the most Energy Star certified commercial buildings in the preceding calendar year with Charlotte ranking 21st. The Top Cities list illustrates how cities across America are embracing energy efficiency as a proven path to financial savings and a healthier environment.

Energy Star labeled buildings in Charlotte achieved significant reductions in their energy bills and greenhouse gas emissions. These buildings represent more than 13 million square feet and will save more than $10 million annually in energy costs while preventing greenhouse gas emissions equal to the emissions of more than 8,500 homes a year. Energy Star buildings and plants are America's energy all-stars - they save more, use less and help reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

"Every year, more cities and buildings are turning to energy efficiency to protect the environment and strengthen their local economies," said EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy. "Money saved on energy bills can boost the bottom line and be reinvested. The cities on this list prove energy efficiency saves money, improves our communities today, and helps us build toward a healthy future full of opportunity."

Public and privately-owned commercial buildings contribute roughly 16 percent of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions and cost American organizations and cities more than $100 billion per year in energy bills. Since 1999, more than 27,000 buildings across America have earned EPA's Energy Star certification, which signifies proven, superior energy performance. On average, these certified buildings use 35 percent less energy and are responsible for 35 percent fewer carbon dioxide emissions than typical buildings. These buildings have saved more than $3.8 billion on utility bills and prevented greenhouse gas emissions equal to the emissions from the annual electricity use of more than 2.6 million homes.

To be eligible for Energy Star certification, a building must be independently verified to perform better than at least 75 percent of similar buildings nationwide. Office buildings, schools, retail stores, supermarkets, hotels, and many other common building types are eligible to earn the Energy Star.

In addition to certifying top-performing buildings, Energy Star offers valuable tools and resources to help building owners and managers measure and improve energy performance in virtually any type of building. Financial savings can be captured through low- and no- cost improvements, and larger upgrades typically pay for themselves within a few years.

To create the annual list, EPA tallies the number of Energy Star certified buildings within each metropolitan area, as defined by the U.S. Census Bureau. These areas include the city itself, as well as surrounding towns and suburbs.

The top 25 cities are:
Rank Metro Area 2015 Building Count
1 Washington, DC 686
2 Los Angeles 527
3 San Francisco 355
4 Atlanta 311
5 New York City 303
6 Chicago 281
7 Dallas-Fort Worth 249
8 Houston 231
9 Denver 215
10 Phoenix 190
11 Boston 157
12 Philadelphia 156
13 Minneapolis-St. Paul 131
14 Seattle 122
15 San Diego 120
16 Riverside 118
17 San Jose 114
18 Miami 104
19 Sacramento 103
20 Portland, Ore. 74
21 Charlotte, NC 71
22 Honolulu, Hawaii 69
23 Virginia Beach 63
24 Indianapolis 57
25 Austin 55
25 Louisville 55

Energy Star is the simple choice for energy efficiency. For more than 20 years, people across America have looked to EPA's Energy Star program for guidance on how to save energy, save money, and protect the environment. Behind each blue label is a product, building, or home that is independently certified to use less energy and cause fewer of the emissions that contribute to climate change. Today, Energy Star is the most widely recognized symbol for energy efficiency in the world, helping families and businesses save $362 billion on utility bills, while reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 2.4 billion metric tons since 1992. Join the millions who are already making a difference at energystar.gov.

More on the 2016 top cities: www.energystar.gov/topcities

Search for Energy Star certified buildings: www.energystar.gov/buildinglist

More about earning the Energy Star certification for commercial buildings: www.energystar.gov/buildingcertification

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