HOUSTON, June 10, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The U.S. Department of Energy has recognized Transwestern for its leadership in the first year of the Better Buildings Challenge. Launched in December 2011, the Better Buildings Challenge is a national leadership initiative that calls on chief executive officers, university presidents, state officials and local leaders to reduce their portfolio-wide energy use by 20 percent by 2020 and share results of their energy reduction strategies with the marketplace.
Transwestern was recognized May 30, 2013 at the Better Buildings Alliance Efficiency Forum held in Golden, Colo., for presenting the firm's implementation model, a key requirement of the Better Buildings Challenge. To date, only seven of the 89 participating Partners in the Better Buildings Challenge have submitted an implementation model. Transwestern also received praise for sharing two showcase projects on the Better Buildings Challenge website when only one is required by the program.
"Through the Better Buildings Challenge, our Partners are breaking through barriers to reduce energy intensity and achieve lasting results that save money and create jobs," said David Danielson, assistant secretary for energy efficiency and renewable energy within the U.S. Department of Energy. "We applaud these Partners for their leadership in making their organizations more energy-efficient, which keeps American businesses competitive."
Transwestern intends to further improve energy efficiency in the buildings it manages on behalf of clients by comparing data from like buildings to pinpoint where additional measures need to be implemented. The firm will also ensure that all of its managed office facilities are benchmarked in ENERGY STAR® to provide a clear picture of energy consumption in the overall portfolio. Transwestern's future plans to meet energy reduction goals include encouraging owners of offices with lower ENERGY STAR performance ratings to complete energy audits and implement no- and low-cost energy conservation measures. Transwestern will continue to educate tenants on their building's goals to reduce energy consumption and how each of them can reduce their own energy consumption.
To date, more than 110 organizations representing more than 2 billion square feet of space have joined the Better Buildings Challenge and committed to share portfolio-wide energy consumption data. The Partners also agreed to publicize their cutting-edge projects that demonstrate significant energy savings and share their approaches to overcoming barriers.
"Transwestern has committed 442 office buildings totaling 78 million square feet in its managed portfolio to the Better Buildings Challenge," said Al Skodowski, Transwestern's managing senior vice president and director of LEED® and sustainability services.
"Implementing sustainable improvements lowers energy costs and optimizes financial performance through environmentally responsible operating practices," Skodowski said. "This is the ultimate goal of Transwestern's GOOD, BETTER ... BEST program, which measures sustainable improvements at our managed buildings."
According to the Energy Department, each year the U.S. spends about $200 billion to power commercial buildings and another $200 billion to power industrial facilities. Together, commercial and industrial buildings account for roughly half of the nation's energy use and more than 40 percent of its carbon emissions. In many buildings, these costs can be reduced by 20 percent or more through various energy efficiency measures and approaches. Energy efficiency projects may include changing to LED lighting, upgrading heating and cooling systems and utilizing new refrigeration technologies.
In addition to the Better Buildings Challenge Partners, financial institutions and utilities participate in the Better Buildings Challenge as Allies. Financial Allies are working to drive innovative solutions and fund products for energy efficiency, while Utility Allies are working to provide commercial customers with multi-measure energy efficiency programs and access to the energy usage data that helps them better manage their energy use.
For more information on Transwestern's activities and accomplishments in the Better Buildings Challenge, please click here. A full list of the corporate, state, municipal, educational and industrial Partners in the Better Buildings Challenge can be found here. For more details on the Better Buildings Challenge participants and their energy efficiency goals and projects, please visit www.energy.gov/betterbuildingschallenge and follow the program on Twitter: @BetterBldgsDOE.
Transwestern is a privately held real estate firm specializing in agency leasing, property and facilities management, tenant advisory, capital markets, development, research and sustainability. The fully integrated enterprise leverages competencies in office, industrial, retail, multifamily and healthcare properties to add value for investors, owners and occupiers of real estate. Transwestern facilitates better decision-making for clients by combining penetrating local market intelligence and macro-market research through its affiliate, Delta Associates. Transwestern has 33 U.S. offices and assists clients through more than 180 offices in 36 countries as part of a strategic alliance with Paris-based BNP Paribas Real Estate. For more information, please visit www.transwestern.net and follow us on Twitter: @Transwestern.