This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.

July 06, 2011

Initial Partners Named in the Better Buildings Challenge

Photo of the front of large box store Best Buy with customers camped in a tent on the sidewalk.

As part of the Better Buildings Challenge, participants such as Best Buy are committed to making their buildings more energy efficient—and ready to serve avid holiday shoppers like these.
Credit: Best Buy

DOE announced on June 30 the 14 initial partners committing to the Better Buildings Challenge. These participants, from the private sector and local governments, have committed more than $500 million to improving energy efficiency in 300 million square feet of floor space. The challenge is part of the Better Buildings Initiative that President Obama launched in February to spur private investment in commercial building upgrades. The goal is to make U.S. commercial buildings 20% more efficient over the next decade.

DOE will work with the 14 entities in the coming months to further develop the details of the challenge in advance of another round of partnership announcements in the fall. Commitments announced to date include a pledge by Lend Lease to retrofit 40,000 homes for military families and by Transwestern to upgrade energy efficiency in 78 million square feet of commercial real estate. Also, city groups in Los Angeles, California; Seattle, Washington; and Atlanta, Georgia will strive to upgrade real estate within their core urban areas. Enrolled companies and communities will provide data on their energy savings and share their efficiency strategies, which will serve as models to save money by saving energy. Additionally, a number of financial organizations have agreed to support the challenge by helping to provide financing for energy efficiency projects. See the DOE press release for a complete list of partners, and see also the DOE Better Buildings Web page.