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

February 05, 2014

Los Angeles Recognized for Leadership in Energy Efficiency

The Energy Department on January 29 recognized the City of Los Angeles, California, for its leadership in the Energy Department’s Better Buildings Challenge—helping the city save on energy costs and cut greenhouse gas emissions. Through the Better Buildings Challenge, Los Angeles has pledged to reduce the energy intensity for 30 million square feet of city-owned facilities and private buildings by 20% by 2020.

As part of the Better Buildings Challenge, Los Angeles is working to benchmark 250 of the city’s most energy-intensive facilities and develop a plan to improve building performance by 2020. More than 25 owners of large commercial buildings, including Transwestern, Kaiser Permanente of Southern California, Kilroy Realty, and the Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles, have joined the Challenge and are reporting their results annually to help others save money and energy.

Each year, the 500,000-square-foot Los Angeles Central Library uses approximately 7 million kilowatt hours—equivalent to the annual electricity consumption of about 600 households. Through the Better Buildings Challenge, Los Angeles has retrofitted the library, including replacing an aging roof with a cool roof, updating the HVAC system, and replacing old lighting with new, energy efficient bulbs. As a result of these upgrades, the library is on track to save about $175,000 in energy costs per year. See the Energy Department press release and Better Buildings Challenge website.