Boston, Mass. -- A total of 334 buildings across the six New England states are among more than 3,200 buildings across the country competing in the 2012 National Building Competition: Battle of the Buildings. These buildings are going head to head to improve energy efficiency, and find out who can be the biggest energy loser in the third annual EPA and Energy Star-sponsored competition.
Commercial buildings in the U.S. are responsible for about 20 percent of the nation’s energy use, at an annual cost of more than $100 billion in energy bills. By improving the energy efficiency of office buildings, hospitals, retail stores and schools, competitors will reduce energy, save on utility bills and reduce greenhouse gases.
In New England, the competitors range from the Island Institute in Rockland, Maine to the Plainfield, N.H. Elementary School. Major participants in New England include 161 buildings owned by Webster Bank, 51 buildings owned and managed by the U.S. General Services Administration, and one municipality, West Hartford, Conn., who entered 21 of their buildings into the competition. For this year’s competition, there will be the following number of buildings participating by New England state: Connecticut – 178; Massachusetts – 80; Rhode Island – 23; Maine – 20; Vermont – 17; New Hampshire – 16.
“Even school kids know that everyone can do their part to save energy. There are so many common sense steps to save energy in commercial buildings that are the same concept as in our homes,” said Curt Spalding, regional administrator of EPA’s New England office. “We applaud the organizations working hard to reduce their energy use, saving money and reducing emissions at the same time.”
More than 30 different types of commercial buildings are facing off in this year’s National Building Competition, representing all 50 states, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands and the District of Columbia. Combined, the competitors have more than 550 million square feet of floor space, equivalent to more than 9,600 football fields.
This is the third year that EPA has hosted the competition, which saw the number of participants nationwide jump from 14 buildings in 2010, to 245 in 2011, and to more than 3,200 this year.
Competitors use EPA's Energy Star online tool, Portfolio Manager, to measure and track their building's monthly energy consumption. In 2011, West High School in Manchester, N.H. was the New England winner by reducing it energy use by 16 percent, saving almost $75,000.00 in energy bills.
More information: List of competitors, social media updates, interactive map of buildings and photos of the competition: http://www.energystar.gov/BattleOfTheBuildings