Many businesses and commercial property managers are working to ensure that they demand less energy from utilities and attempt to cut the level of greenhouse gas emissions throughout the United States.
There was an energy consumption reduction of approximately 3.2 percent from buildings between 2012 and 2013, according to a report from the Urban Land Institute’s Greenprint Center for Building Performance, using data from members of the center. Additionally, there was also a 3.4 percent drop in the level of carbon emissions from these properties.
The decline in carbon emissions was notable for multiple reasons. The report showed that the decline during the period represented the equivalent of 2.9 million trees planted, more than 24,000 cars removed from the road and close to 268,400 oil barrels unused.
“The reduction in both energy consumption and carbon emissions are very encouraging signs and a clear indication that the global real estate sector is moving in the right direction,” said Charles Leitner, III, chairman of Greenprint. “Greenprint continues to drive progress in improving the environmental performance of the real estate industry in ways that enhance the long-term value of our investments. I am proud of the progress we have made, but I know we can achieve more through leadership, commitment and stakeholder engagement.”
The continued efforts to reduce emissions from these properties will continue through the next several years. The report explained that the Greenprint Center plans to cut emissions at these buildings by as much as 50 percent by 2030. With these parameters, there are more buildings participating in the program. In the past year, the number of buildings looking to cut emissions through the initiative rose 20 percent, which also was 15 percent when considering total floor area.
Utilities savings important to many in American commercial industry
Further savings from buildings in the American market is underway, and this already had a notably positive effect. Overall operating expenses declined to $7.86 per square foot in 2012, which was 3.9 percent lower than 2011′s figure of $8.18 per square foot, according to a report from the Building Owners and Managers Association.
A sizable portion of the savings is coming from utilities. The report added that the utilities made up for close to two-thirds of the total savings, as it fell to $2.12 per square foot in 2012, which was 9 percent lower than a year earlier.