Chicago, SF, Atlanta Lead in ‘Green Building Adoption”

Green Building Adoption, Wikimedia Commons, Chicago

Chicago, San Francisco and Atlanta — in that order — lead the nation in “green building adoption,” according to an analysis by real estate giant CBRE and Maastricht University. According to the report:

“Green” office buildings in the U.S. are defined as those that hold either an EPA ENERGY STAR® label, USGBC LEED® certification or both.

The study found that institutional owners of office buildings continued to pursue green building certifications in the 30 largest U.S. markets. 10.3 percent of all buildings surveyed are Energy Star labeled, while 4.7 percent are LEED certified, both slightly ahead of last year’s totals, although the total percentage of certified space fell slightly due to expiration of some certifications.

This year’s study also examined the potential impact of municipal energy disclosure regulations on green building adoption rates. Nine of the top 10 cities have implemented benchmarking ordinances, and several of those have experienced measurable increases in green certifications. Cities with benchmarking ordinances have 9 percent more Energy Star and LEED certified buildings, and 21 percent higher Energy Star and LEED certified square footage.

At the end of 2016, Chicago led the nation, with 66 percent of total its commercial square footage under LEED or Energy Star certification. San Francisco was at 61.8 percent and Atlanta at 55 percent.

Review the full report here. The report maps out LEED and Energy Star buildings for the top 30 markets in the United States, and offers up neatly organized green building data on each of those markets.

The CBRE finding was the second time this month that Atlanta was able to toot its green horn on commercial real estate. At the annual meeting of the Atlanta Better Buildings Challenge, advocates and industry leaders celebrated the city’s national  leadership in energy and water use reductions tied to the Better Buildings Challenge.




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