The Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) has been named sixth in the nation for its number of ENERGY STAR-certified commercial and multifamily buildings, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The ranking highlights the region and the City of Riverside’s efforts to cut energy costs while increasing efficiency and reducing emissions.
Riverside’s commitment to sustainability
Mayor Patricia Lock Dawson expressed pride in the region’s commitment to sustainability, which is evident in these results. She credits the city, and Riverside Public Utilities, for taking the lead in helping residents and business owners become more efficient, thereby reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
The benefits of ENERGY STAR-certified buildings
ENERGY STAR-certified buildings use an average of 35% less energy and are responsible for 35% less carbon dioxide emissions than typical buildings. In many cities, buildings are the major contributor to emissions, responsible for 30% to more than 70% of a city’s total emissions.
Commercial buildings are responsible for 16% of the nation’s greenhouse gas emissions and spend more than $190 billion annually on energy. Implementing energy-efficient measures, such as those encouraged by Riverside Public Utilities, helps commercial building owners to save money and reduce their environmental footprint.
Riverside Public Utilities’ energy efficiency programs
Riverside Public Utilities has encouraged large and small customers to participate in its Energy Efficiency programs for almost a decade. Commercial customers can work with an account manager to implement industry best practices to save energy and help their bottom line. The program includes integrating energy efficiency tools and techniques for smaller business customers.
Also, the program consists of a refrigerated load program to support commercial customers highly dependent on refrigeration for their business and an outdoor lighting program that enables retail customers to replace energy-intensive parking lot lighting with modern, high-efficiency LED lighting. Each program helps support customers in achieving ENERGY STAR certification.
The impact of energy-efficient buildings on the environment
More than 7,000 commercial buildings earned the EPA’s ENERGY STAR last year. About 41,000 facilities across America have gained the certification, saving $5.4 billion on energy bills and preventing more than 22 million metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions. Since 1992, ENERGY STAR and its partners have helped American families and businesses avoid more than $500 billion in energy costs and achieve 4 billion metric tons of greenhouse gas reductions.
Mayor Pro Tem Clarissa Cervantes emphasized the importance of such investments, which are already paying dividends against increased energy efficiency. As the effects of climate change continue to manifest themselves, the role of energy-efficient buildings will become even more crucial in mitigating further damage.
Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario Metropolitan Statistical Area’s ranking among the Top 10 for Energy Efficient Buildings highlights the region’s commitment to sustainability and reducing its environmental footprint. The benefits of energy-efficient buildings are manifold, from reducing greenhouse gas emissions to saving money for building owners. Through programs like those offered by Riverside Public Utilities, the region is helping businesses achieve ENERGY STAR certification and contribute to a more sustainable future.