Rebuilding America Highlighted at Clinton Global Initiative-America
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Submitted by EFC Team on July 8th, 2011

On June 30, 2011, U.S. Secretary of Energy Steven Chu announced the Better Buildings Challenge at the Clinton Global Initiative – America conference in Chicago.  Rebuilding America’s work to develop an innovative financing model to jump-start energy efficiency investments in Atlanta’s commercial building core was featured as part of the announcement.  The Better Buildings Challenge goal is to reduce energy use by 20% in the commercial building sector by 2020, saving American businesses up to $40 billion per year in the process.
“Improving building energy efficiency on a large scale is a challenge we can’t afford not to take,” said Secretary Chu. “It will create jobs, reduce energy waste, save our businesses and institutions money, and reduce our dependence on foreign oil.”
The commitment connects 14 partners, representing 300 million square feet of real estate and $500 million in financing for energy upgrades.  Three cities have partnered with the White House and the Department of Energy, including Atlanta, Seattle, and Los Angeles.
The Energy Future Coalition, through the Rebuilding America initiative, has been working with the City of Atlanta to develop a public-private energy efficiency financing mechanism that would unite the City with local businesses and the nonprofit community to reduce energy use 20% by 2020.  From the U.S. Department of Energy’s press release:
“Working with the Department of Energy, the effort is already underway with a benchmarking initiative for Atlanta’s 220-block downtown improvement district, including City Hall, the Civic Center, and other municipal facilities, as well as to eventually include landmark buildings in the downtown area. Going forward, project partners will work with banks, funds, Energy Service Companies (ESCOs), and others to enable substantive retrofits of downtown university, healthcare, municipal, and commercial buildings. Enrolled buildings participating in substantive retrofits will initially exceed 2 million square feet, with broader participation expected in energy monitoring and action.”
Better Buildings Challenge partners include:
  • Best Buy
  • Citi
  • City of Atlanta
  • City of Los Angeles
  • City of Seattle
  • Green Campus Partners LLC
  • Green Sports Alliance
  • Lend Lease
  • Metrus Energy
  • Renewable Funding
  • Transcend Equity
  • Transwestern
  • USAA Real Estate Company
  • Abundant Power

Watch the Better Buildings Challenge press conference:

Watch the Energy Innovation and the Built Environment session:

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