The Federal Government's Green Building Megaproject

The federal government set aside $5.5 billion in stimulus funding to retrofit its huge fleet of buildings. $4.5 billion is to be spent on green building projects, some of which have already been launched.
December 28, 2010, 7am PST | Nate Berg
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"Even with the U.S. government's large efficiency improvement, its defense, safety, and science missions require so much juice that energy per square foot still is 30 percent higher than that of the private sector. And efficiency progress appeared to be slowing. Energy improvements had to be made out of the $1 billion per year the GSA typically is budgeted for new construction or renovation of its portfolio of federally-owned buildings. Last year, a report by the U.S. Department of Energy's Federal Energy Management Program said that overall government energy intensity improvement was only 1.2 percent in 2008, less than half the goal of 3 percent per year set both by Congress and under an executive order by former President George W. Bush. "The Federal Government is not likely to meet its goals in the coming years using a business-as-usual approach," the report said."

Projects like roof retrofits and water conservation projects have already been funded, as have various solar power projects.

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Published on Thursday, December 23, 2010 in National Geographic
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