Jeffrey Harris, a vice president at the pro-efficiency group Alliance to Save Energy, said these claims have a sturdy foundation in the laboratorys and in the real world. He pointed to the Energy Department's data on high-performance buildings, as well as other databases containing information on existing buildings. Engineers and green-building leaders, he said, 'are not breaking a huge amount of sweat in getting beyond 30 percent in code.'
He also had major question marks about the NAIOP study. He called the 10-year payback target 'an undershot,' since the savings of a green building continue as long as it's still standing. He also questioned the report's assumptions about electricity prices and the cost of certain 'green' features."
"[John] Bryant, [an] NAIOP lobbyist, disagreed. He said commercial building developers routinely make decisions based on a five-to-10-year payback period, and if green buildings broke even that quickly, builders would have erected more.
'We're looking at it from a developer point of view, when maybe some of the other groups aren't,' he said."