Energy efficiency league tables in the US have confirmed California as the top state for energy conservation in buildings.
The Environment Protection Agency’s (EPA) list of cities with the most Energy Star rated buildings is an indicator of how serious each is taking efforts to cut energy use.
California held six places in the top 25 including Los Angeles in the number one spot and San Francisco at number six.
Washington DC, Chicago, New York and Atlanta made up the rest of the top five.
Commercial buildings that earn the EPA’s Energy Star must perform in the top 25% of similar buildings nationwide.
Energy Star certified buildings use an average of 35% less energy and are responsible for 35% fewer greenhouse gas emissions than average buildings.
During 2012, 20,000 buildings were certified nationally saving a total of $2.7bn in their utility bills and enough electricity for two million homes for a year.
The EPA regulates pollutants in the USA including CO2 which was controversially certified as a pollutant in 2009. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act 2009 allocated $94bn for energy efficiency measures.
In addition to monitoring energy efficiency in buildings, the EPA has also set limits on emissions from the US electricity generation sector.
More than 50GW of coal power capacity has closed or is scheduled to.
The switch to cheaper gas and the cost of upgrades to bring dirtier coal plants in line with regulations contributed to a cut in emissions from US power stations of 4.6% in 2011.
The Top 25 Energy Star Cities