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EPA’s Energy Star Buildings Mark a Decade of Savings: Oldest, tallest, largest buildings named

Release Date: 12/09/2009
Contact Information: Enesta Jones,, 202-564-7873, 202-564-4355

WASHINGTON — Ten years ago, EPA unveiled a ground-breaking development in energy efficiency for the commercial marketplace – the first Energy Star building. Since 1999, Energy Star partners in the commercial marketplace have helped prevent nearly 120 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent, equal to the emissions from the annual electricity use of more than 60 million American homes.

“The Energy Star story is one of eliminating barriers, driving demand, and delivering excellence,” said Gina McCarthy, assistant administrator for EPA’s Office of Air and Radiation. “EPA is proud to celebrate a decade of Energy Star buildings in communities across America that play an important role in fighting global warming, improving energy efficiency, and saving money.”

To celebrate this important decade milestone, EPA is releasing the publication, Celebrating a Decade of Energy Star Buildings, which tells the history behind the Energy Star program and its development into a leading energy efficiency brand in the commercial marketplace. Buildings highlighted demonstrate the diversity of types of Energy Star buildings, including:

  • The oldest building to earn the Energy Star: Cambridge Savings Bank in Cambridge, Mass.
  • The tallest building to earn the Energy Star: Aon Center in Chicago
  • The largest building to earn the Energy Star: USAA McDermott Building in San Antonio, Texas
  • The first building to earn the Energy Star: Ridgehaven Green Building in San Diego, Calif.

Several buildings with notable tenants are also listed, including in Seattle, Wash.; National Geographic Society in Washington, D.C.; and MTV in Santa Monica, Calif. Finally, a selection of case studies chronicles how the energy efficiency of different buildings improved with help from Energy Star.

The Energy Star is available for 13 types of commercial buildings, including retail stores, hotels, schools, supermarkets and more. Nearly 9,000 buildings across the nation have earned the Energy Star for superior energy efficiency over the past decade and the numbers continue to climb daily. Energy Star buildings typically use 35 percent less energy and emit 35 percent less carbon dioxide into the atmosphere than average buildings.

To obtain the publication:

To learn more about the Energy Star Commercial and Industrial Program: