The U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation that will create a voluntary energy-efficiency program modeled after Energy Star for commercial and government buildings.
President Obama is expected to sign the so-called Tenant Star law, which authorizes the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to set up a branding, recognition, and certification program. Tenant Star is targeted for property owners and tenants who design, build, and operate leased spaces in office buildings.
Tenant Star encourages tenants, who, in some buildings, consume more than half of the power used by the building, to take measures to save energy. If the program is widely adopted, it could save landlords and tenants an estimated $2 billion by 2030 and reduce carbon emissions by nearly 12 million metric tons.
"Tenant Star will also go a long way to help ensure that U.S. buildings—and the separate spaces leased within them—are at the vanguard of technology and energy conservation,” says Anthony E. Malkin, Chair of The Real Estate Roundtable's Sustainability Policy Advisory Committee and Chairman and CEO of Empire State Realty Trust, Inc. “The program will allow building owners to attract financiers, investors, and tenants in the increasingly competitive national and global markets for real estate.”