Why new doesn’t always mean efficient

Contrary to popular opinion, new buildings don’t always perform among the best. Some studies even show that they may be slightly less efficient than their sturdy, thick-walled ancestors! Consider these results:

  • New York City Benchmarking Analysis – New York City requires annual reporting of energy use across all commercial buildings over 50,000 square feet. In their benchmarking report, the city explains that for offices, the newest buildings were found to use more energy than the oldest.
  • New Buildings Institute LEED Study – An analysis by the New Buildings Institute found that 25 percent of LEED certified new buildings received a 1–100 ENERGY STAR score below 50; that means they’re performing worse than the national median. In fact, more than half of LEED certified new buildings in the study didn’t earn a 75 or higher on the ENERGY STAR scale, which is EPA’s specification for superior energy performance.

The single most effective way to design an energy-efficient building is to design it to earn EPA’s ENERGY STAR from the start.

Get started with EPA’s step-by-step process today.