California Governor Arnold Schwarzengger’s December 14 Executive Order commits California to a Green Building Action Plan based on the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating system. The Order calls for aggressive action in reducing state-building electricity usage by retrofitting, building, and operating the most energy- and resource-efficient buildings in a cost-effective manner.
Building on the fact that California places conservation and energy efficiency first in the loading order of energy resources, the new Green Building Action Plan includes measures outlining that the design, construction, and operation of all new and renovated state-owned facilities paid for with state funds must acquire “LEED Silver” or higher certification.
Governor Schwarzenegger’s Executive Order applies to facilities owned, funded, or leased by the state, and encourages all cities, counties, and schools to do the same. The practices outlined in the Green Building Action Plan are projected to save California taxpayers $100 million per year, and have the potential to save California’s commercial and industrial buildings (existing and new construction) more than $2 billion per year.