For Immediate Release
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
Contact: Shannon Whalen McDaniel 703-228-3685 (voice) 703-228-4711(TTY)
ARLINGTON, Va. --- Arlington County today made available on its website detailed energy data for all 67 of its government buildings. The report cards are part of Arlington’s commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions through its Fresh AIRE – Arlington Initiative to Reduce Emissions – program.
The data compares energy consumption in buildings in 2007 with energy consumption in the same buildings in 2008. It shows that Arlington’s efficiency efforts saved more than 900,000 kWh of electricity and more than 15,000 therms of natural gas. That translates into energy savings of approximately $100,000, even though the winter months were colder in 2008 than in 2007.
The energy intensity (how much energy a building uses per square foot), of the County’s continuing buildings fell 2% between 2007 and 2008. The County added several new or renovated buildings in 2008, including the new Fire Station 5 and the renovated Fairlington Community Center, but energy use in all County buildings still declined by slightly less than 1%.
“Improving energy efficiencies of large public facilities is an enormous challenge,” said Department of Environmental Services Director Robert Griffin. “Having robust data is a vital first step. We hope that by publishing these detailed reports, we will inspire others to follow our lead.”
Buildings contribute the largest portion (39%) of Arlington County government’s total greenhouse gas emissions. This is why the Fresh AIRE team focused first on building energy data.
The new Energy Report Cards show two years of energy data for all Arlington County buildings, including energy consumption, energy intensity, and carbon footprint. Also included are actions taken and next steps for each facility. Some highlights:
The building energy report cards are part of a community effort to be as transparent as possible about energy usage and costs at county facilities. The voluntary federal ENERGY STAR program encourages building owners to make this information publicly available. Arlington has taken this first step and encourages others to do so. Arlington will continue to share information on Arlington’s activities to reduce its carbon footprint.
As part of its Fresh AIRE program, in 2007 Arlington pledged to reduce carbon emissions from 2000 to 2012 by 10 percent. It frequently achieves 20% return on investment for energy efficiencies.
Fresh AIRE – Arlington Initiative to Reduce Emissions – was launched by Arlington County in January 2007 as Arlington County Government’s program for combating climate change. AIRE is a collaboration effort between Arlington County government, businesses, and residents designed to reduce harmful greenhouse gases through energy efficiency measures, green building technologies and practices, transportation alternatives, improved recycling, and water conservation. Learn more at www.arlingtonva.us/aire.
Arlington, Va., is a world-class residential, business and tourist location that was originally part of the "10 miles square" parcel of land surveyed in 1791 to be the Nation's Capital. It is the geographically smallest self-governing county in the United States, occupying slightly less than 26 square miles. Arlington maintains a rich variety of stable neighborhoods, quality schools and enlightened land use, and received the Environmental Protection Agency's highest award for "Smart Growth" in 2002. Home to some of the most influential organizations in the world - including the Pentagon - Arlington stands out as one of America's preeminent places to live, visit and do business.