WASHINGTON – The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) recently released its Top 10 List of legislation advancing green building and the economic activity and jobs that come with it. In conjunction with this announcement, congressional members, including Rep. Ben Chandler, D-Ky., and Sen. Olympia Snowe, R-Maine, will be honored at an event for their support of green building.
“Green building saves energy, water and money,” notes Roger Platt, senior vice president of global policy and law, USGBC. “It is one of the most promising solutions to critical global issues such as climate change, resource depletion and dependence on foreign energy sources. These bills will create jobs and pump money into our economy.”
The USGBC Top 10 list honors The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and spotlights nine other pending bills in the House and 10 in the Senate that represent the best proposals to advance green building. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which was signed into law last February, dedicates more than $22 billion for energy- efficiency projects, including $346 million for energy-efficient building technologies specifically.
“The members of Congress and Senators we are honoring are all demonstrating bold leadership toward a clean energy future, a sustainable built environment and a sustainable economy,” adds Platt.
The Top 10 List includes bills that have been introduced in Congress in the last year that would enable innovative financing for homeowners and building owners to make efficiency improvements, increase and extend incentives for improving our schools and existing building stock, and encourage job growth and training in new fields of building energy management and retrofits.
"Our country will rise and fall based on how we educate our children, and study after study shows that where children learn has a huge impact on what they learn,” says Rep. Chandler. “Not only will this bill begin to fix our crumbling public schools, but it will create local jobs that cannot be shipped overseas, save energy, and during these tough economic times, make a significant long-term investment in our country's most valuable resource: our children."
“With our crippled economy, continuing energy crisis, and changing climate, Americans need timely and effective solutions to set a new course for how we use and think about energy,” says Sen. Snowe. “Energy efficiency has emerged as one of the most effective and expeditious actions that can be taken to preserve valuable resources for producers and consumers. I am pleased to work with Senators Feinstein and Bingaman to build upon the success of past tax credits and provide critical energy efficiency tax incentives that will spark innovation in our housing and commercial building sector and pave the way for economical and environmentally-conscious living.”
The Top 10 list includes:
- The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act – Public Law
- The American Clean Energy and Security Act – Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) and Ed Markey (D-Mass.)
- The 21st Century Green High-Performing Public School Facilities Act – Ben Chandler (D-Ky.)
- The Expanding Building Efficiency Act – Dave Reichert (R-Wash.)
- The Property Assessed Clean Energy Tax Benefits Act — John Sarbanes (D-Md.)
- An Act to Enhance Private Financing for Clean Energy Technology Deployment – Steve Israel (D-N.Y.)
- The Energy Efficiency Modernization Act of 2009 – Mary Jo Kilroy (D-Ohio)
- The Water Accountability Tax Efficiency Reinvestment (WATER) Act – Michael Coffman (R-Colo.)
- The Livable Communities Act of 2010 – Ed Perlmutter (D-Colo.) **pending introduction**
- The Federal Personnel Training Act of 2010 – Russ Carnahan (D-Mo.) **pending introduction**
- The Clean Energy and American Jobs Act – John Kerry (D-Mass.) and Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.)
- The American Clean Energy and Leadership Act – Jeff Bingaman (D-N.M.) and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska)
- Energy Efficiency in Housing Act (EEHA) of 2009 – Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.)
- The Livable Communities Act of 2009 – Christopher Dodd (D-Conn.)
- The Expanding Building Efficiency Incentives Act of 2009 – Olympia Snowe (R-Maine)
- The School Building Fairness Act – Tom Harkin (D-Iowa)
- Clean Energy for Homes and Buildings Act of 2009 – Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) and Richard Lugar (R-Ind.)
- The Energy Efficiency Modernization Act of 2009 – Michael Bennet (D-Colo.)
- The Water Accountability Tax Efficiency Reinvestment (WATER) Act of 2009 — Mark Udall (D-Colo.)
- The Federal Agency Energy Efficiency Improvement Act of 2009 – Susan Collins (R-Maine)
About the U.S. Green Building Council
The Washington, D.C.-based U.S. Green Building Council is committed to a prosperous and sustainable future for our nation through cost-efficient and energy-saving green buildings. With a community comprising 78 local affiliates, more than 18,000 member companies and organizations, and more than 140,000 LEED Professional Credential holders, USGBC is the driving force of an industry that is projected to contribute $554 billion to the U.S. gross domestic product from 2009-2013.
The U.S. Green Building Council's LEED green building certification system is the foremost program for the design, construction and operation of green buildings. More than 35,000 projects are currently participating in the LEED system, comprising over 6.9 billion square feet of construction space in all 50 states and 114 countries. By using less energy, LEED-certified buildings save money for families, businesses and taxpayers; reduce greenhouse gas emissions; and contribute to a healthier environment for residents, workers and the larger community.
For more information, visit www.usgbc.org.