ENERGY STAR Certification
Offered jointly by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of Energy, the ENERGY STAR label can be earned by single- and multifamily homes, a range of commercial and industrial building types, and individual retail products such as appliances. The ENERGY STAR program encourages homeowners and developers across the U.S. to adopt energy-saving practices, upgrade to high-efficiency appliances and equipment, and ultimately reduce environmental pollution as we also reduce utility costs. Existing commercial buildings that perform better than at least 75% of similar buildings nationwide are often eligible to earn the ENERGY STAR, while new residential projects are required to meet or exceed the ENERGY STAR Reference Design. The EPA also recognizes exceptional performance by awarding ENERGY STAR Partner or Leader designation, or the coveted Partner of the Year Award.
As one of ENERGY STAR’s (SPP), The Cotocon Group has the depth of experience needed to help a variety of clients earn the ENERGY STAR label for their projects. More importantly, our benchmarking and recommendation process is performed by engineers who understand the ENERGY STAR rating system not only as a checklist, but also as an opportunity to save our clients money and make their buildings more comfortable, healthy, and durable spaces.
Ten reasons to pursue ENERGY STAR Certification
ENERGY STAR certified buildings and plants are good for the environment and good for the bottom line. Watch the “Top 5 Reasons to Get ENERGY STAR Certification for Your Building or Plant” video below, and then read on for even more compelling reasons why your organization should pursue America’s most trusted symbol of energy efficiency for your properties.
In an era when fears of “greenwashing” abound, cut through the clutter with ENERGY STAR, the most trusted environmental label in the United States. More than 85 percent of Americans recognize it when they see it. And ENERGY STAR is the only energy efficiency certification that is based on actual, verified energy performance, making your buildings all the more attractive to potential buyers and lessees who want guaranteed savings.
Once in operation, ENERGY STAR certified buildings use, on average, 35 percent less energy than similar buildings nationwide. The cost savings can be substantial. For example, ENERGY STAR certified office buildings cost $0.50 less per square foot to operate than their peers. In 2015, ENERGY STAR certified buildings saved $1.7 billion, or an average of more than $250,000 per building.
Reliably persistent energy performance makes it more likely that the higher net operating income from energy cost savings will be recognized through higher building valuation. Experienced managers of large portfolios of ENERGY STAR certified buildings interviewed for one study confirm that ENERGY STAR helps increase building value. ENERGY STAR certified buildings generate more income when compared to similar buildings.
Because ENERGY STAR certified buildings are verified to use 35 percent less energy, on average, than similar buildings, they can also be verified to contribute 35 percent fewer greenhouse gas emissions to our atmosphere. By earning the ENERGY STAR, you’re joining the front lines in the fight against climate change.
Americans are big believers in doing the right thing, and they expect the same of the professionals in their communities. Sixty-eight percent of adults like to do business with environmentally responsible companies3. More than 80 percent of workers are attracted by an employer with an environmental reputation. And about half of workers said they would forgo higher pay or a promotion to work for an organization with a good reputation.
ENERGY STAR certified buildings have higher occupancy rates when compared to similar buildings. A 2008 study conducted by the University of San Diego’s Burnham-Moores Center for Real Estate showed that ENERGY STAR certification gave a roughly 4 percent boost to occupancy rates.
If you want to lease your space to a federal tenant, your buildings must be ENERGY STAR certified. (Executive Order 13514 mandates that Federal Agencies may only lease space in ENERGY STAR certified buildings.)
Are you developing commercial real estate? Achieving Designed to Earn the ENERGY STAR for your building designs can help mitigate risks to profitability by validating assumptions made during the development appraisal, such as operating costs, rents, asset value, and occupancy. Additionally, some jurisdictions allow expedited permitting, review, processing, and inspections to projects that have been designed to earn the ENERGY STAR.
Numerous cities and states have passed legislation containing energy efficiency mandates for commercial new construction projects and existing buildings. The vast majority of them incorporate ENERGY STAR and Designed to Earn the ENERGY STAR. The trend is growing every year as more and more cities and states look for ways to reduce costs and emissions. By earning the ENERGY STAR now, you’re in a better position to respond to any future laws or mandates that come your way. See the list of legislation and campaigns leveraging ENERGY STAR.
All of EPA’s tools and resources, including Portfolio Manager and Target Finder, are free to use. So you can spend your budget on finding other ways to save, rather than on a third-party program.