Wednesday, March 5, 2014

USGBC Announces Top 10 LEED States

USGBC Releases the Top 10 States for LEED Building Certification in 2013
Source: USGBC's Top 10 LEED States
The USGBC recently released "The Top 10 States for LEED in 2013." Based off of census data, commercial, and institutional green building projects, the USGBC has determined which states are the leaders in LEED and the sustainable building movement. According to recent predictions by studies such as McGraw Hill, green building continues to grow as a multibillion dollar industry and is expected to double in value within the next two years. 4,642 new green building projects and an accumulative total of 596.8 million square feet became LEED certified in 2013. The USGBC calculated the top LEED states by determining the square footage of LEED projects divided by the state population according to U.S. Census data.

LEED, the most widely used and recognized green building rating system in the world, not only uses less energy and resources, but also saves money, promotes healthier living environments, and decreases our carbon footprint. USGBC CEO, president, and founding chair, Rick Fedrizzi, is predicting high growth for the green building industry: “As the economy recovers, green buildings continue to provide for jobs at every professional level and skill set from carpenters to architects. I congratulate everyone in these states whose contributions to resources saved, toxins eliminated, greenhouse gases avoided and human health enhanced help guarantee a prosperous future for our planet and the people who call it home.”

  1. Illinois is at the forefront of the LEED building movement. With a population of 12,830,632 in 2013, 29.42 million square feet and 171 projects were certified in 2013. That's 2.29 square feet per capita. Illinois Governor, Pat Quinn, expressed her pride in Illinois' emphasis on long-term investments in sustainable design in a recent USGBC report: "Illinois is proud to be the nation’s green buildings leader, and we are proof that a smaller environmental footprint can help us step toward energy independence."
  2. Maryland ranks #2 on the USGBC's list with 2.20 square feet of LEED certified buildings per person in 2013. 119 projects were certified last year. 
  3. Virginia had 160 projects become certified in 2013. With 16.87 million square feet and a population of 8,001,024, Virginia ranked #3 with 2.11 square feet per person in 2013.
  4. Massachusetts ranks #4 on USGBC's list with 2.09 square feet certified per person in 2013. Massachusetts had 101 projects become LEED certified last year.
  5. New York and California tied for 5th place with 1.95 square feet per person. New York had 37.84 million square feet certified and 259 projects. Similarly, California had 72.73 million square feet and 595 projects LEED certified in 2013.
  6. Oregon came in 6th place with 1.83 square feet certified per person, 47 projects certified, and 6.99 million square feet become LEED certified in 2013.
  7. North Carolina is a newcomer to the list and had 133 projects and 17.18 million square feet become LEED certified in 2013. In 7th place, it had 1.80 square feet per capita.
  8. Colorado had 124 projects, 8.89 million square feet, and 1.77 square feet per person certified in 2013. 
  9. Hawaii is another new state to make the top 10. With only a population of 1,360,301 total, it had 2.32 million square feet certified in 2013 and 17 projects--or 1.71 square feet per person.
  10. Minnesota was the final state to make USGBC top 10 list, with 1.55 square feet certified per person in 2013. Minnesota had 8.21 million square feet total certified and 51 projects certified last year.
The USGBC also recognized Washington D.C., which didn't make the Top 10 State List, since it is a federal district. Washington D.C had 32.45 square feet certified per person. The U.S. federal government has aimed to achieve LEED certification for all of its buildings. 106 projects and 19.52 million square feet were LEED certified in D.C. last year.

For more information on the USGBC's Top 10 LEED States and their notable achievements, click here

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