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Green Certification and Energy Efficiency
Green Business Certification Inc. (GBCI) and Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) have announced that GBCI, who recognizes excellence in green business industry performance and practice globally, is now administering certifications for commercial and multifamily projects pursuing the Investor Confidence Project’s (ICP) Investor Ready Energy Efficiency (IREE) certification. As an underwriting standard for energy efficiency projects, ICP works to increase confidence in the predicted energy and financial savings for building owners and investors, and helps companies and governments as they work toward their climate change goals by giving them tools to reduce building emissions.
“Buildings account for nearly 40 percent of all energy use, so if we are going to continue reducing U.S. emissions, we must utilize tools and resources that allow us to standardize our approach,” said Mahesh Ramanujam, president and CEO, U.S. Green Building Council and GBCI. “ICP plays an important role in helping buildings improve and uncover efficiency opportunities. The program delivers confidence to the market.”
“At a time when businesses and cities around the world are making commitments to fight climate change, reducing energy use in buildings is essential,” says Andy Darrell, chief of strategy at Environmental Defense Fund. “ICP’s integration into the GBCI platform offers a system for investors and developers to tap into the trillion dollar energy efficiency market, and will help cities value the energy efficiency upgrades they’ll need to reduce carbon emissions.”
Energy efficiency projects often face challenges because they are not prepared or packaged consistently, making it difficult to compare potential projects for investment decisions and track results. ICP applies a standard method for engineering, documenting, evaluating and implementing projects. The IREE certification system provides a roadmap to help projects and investors reduce transaction costs and engineering overhead through industry-accepted best practices. An ICP certification training is now available and provides the basic knowledge of ICP methodology, protocols and tools, and outlines how to develop projects to obtain IREE certification.
ICP’s integration into the GBCI portfolio of rating systems, which includes the LEED green building program, will further help drive change and work toward carbon reduction goals. Through GBCI, ICP is supporting the adoption of green business practices and serves as a complement to GBCI programs, like LEED, GRESB, SITES and others.
“Global investment in energy efficiency continues to grow and investors need to feel confident that a project will provide a reliable financial and environmental return while reducing operating costs,” says Panama Bartolomy, director at ICP. “GBCI provides a streamlined experience as projects work toward IREE certification that will ultimately help building owners and managers improve performance.”
ICP provides access to more than 70 project developers, who are a part of its growing Project Developer Network, and have the necessary credentials and experience to develop IREE projects. Through ICP’s Investor and Ally Networks, more than 200 leaders in finance, engineering and real estate have endorsed the program’s standards and approach to increasing investment in energy efficiency. ICP was originally conceived, incubated, developed and deployed by EDF.