Washington State Agencies Ordered to Cut Building Energy 20% by 2020

November 27, 2012

Washington Governor Chris Gregoire on October 1 announced she had signed an executive order directing all cabinet agencies to reduce total building energy use by 20% by 2020. In March, Gregoire joined the governors of Oregon and California, as well as the premier of British Columbia, in announcing a West Coast initiative on energy efficiency. All four jurisdictions made a joint commitment to improve the energy efficiency of state buildings, and to adopt the goal of reducing energy use in state buildings by 20 percent by 2020.

In Washington state, heating, cooling and operating state buildings is the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions resulting from state operations, producing almost 80% of carbon emissions in the state's emission inventory. State agencies, colleges and universities over the last five years have made significant progress in reducing energy use, including investments of more than $325 million in energy efficiency projects. Agencies have been directed to use a 2009 baseline use of energy to monitor progress. Exceptions can be made by the Department of Enterprise Services. See Governor Gregoire's press release.