Reducing Energy Consumption, Complying with Laws
Under EPAct, the AOC had to reduce the Capitol Complex’s energy use by 2 percent in 2006, compared to the 2003 baseline. EPAct’s long-term requirement is to continue reducing energy use per gross square foot annually until 2015. The AOC actually reduced its energy use by 6.5 percent in 2006. For 2007, the AOC also achieved a cumulative energy reduction of 6.7 percent, compared to 2003.
To comply with EPAct and lower the Capitol Complex’s energy use, the AOC:
• is replacing conventional incandescent light bulbs with compact fluorescent lamps
• has upgraded elevators and escalators with more energy-efficient, solid-state systems
• is installing more efficient HVAC systems and adjusting and controlling HVAC schedules
• has incorporated standards from the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design rating system.
In December 2007, efforts to improve energy efficiency in buildings nationwide continued to grow. Those efforts sparked more action in Congress, including EISA. The act increased the required energy reduction from 2 percent with EPAct to 3 percent, for a total reduction of 30 percent over 10 years, Ayers says.
“I have to tell you, that’s not going to be easy,” he says. “We have created a significant sense of urgency. We have jumped right on this situation.”