Did you know that the average human being will spend about 90% of their time indoors on an average day? Our interaction with buildings have become a significant part of our daily lives. Going from home to work, we find ourselves sitting indoors most of the time. Therefore, it is no surprise that buildings utilize a substantial amount of energy. With heating, cooling, lighting, and turning on appliances, it creates a lot of carbon dioxide emissions as byproduct. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in 2012, US heating and cooling for commercial and residential sectors contributed nearly 9% of the total carbon dioxide emissions. This 9% only accounts for emissions caused by heating and cooling, not including electricity usage. Electricity usage alone is such a large number that it has its own sector, making up 38% of carbon emissions, according to the EPA.  To better understand why carbon dioxide emissions cause climate change, please visit here

People are responding in a number of ways; retrofitting, using energy and water more wisely, and building on-site generation capacity. In addressing this issue, building retrofits have become a go-to method to make buildings more energy efficient to reduce their carbon footprint. Ever since the enactment of the Clean Air Act of 1970 and theEnergy Policy Act of 2005, the EPA and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has been identifying and promoting energy efficient products and buildings. In 1992, the EPA established Energy Star, which is a program to certify products, commercial buildings, and industrial plants for its energy efficiency. Energy Star works to incentivize the market for energy efficient products and buildings.  Not only will a business get certified as an Energy Star partner, but will save the business a lot of money by making a building more energy efficient!  Energy has become a serious economic issue as well as an environmental issue. As electricity prices increase due to the decrease in supply of non-renewable sources like coal, gas, and oil, companies are paying much more for energy costs compared to past decades. By investing in clean and renewable technology now, a business will be more profitable in the long run.

Do you know of any successful energy or water retrofit commercial, hospitality or multifamily projects? 
Scope and cost of investment? 
What kind of payback in years? 
Were the final returns proven through post measurement and verification protocols? 
Would the owner retrofit again? 

The questions go on as to why businesses should enter the green building movement and what they can benefit out of their green decision. Thank you for your comments.

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