WASHINGTON — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has released its annual list of United States metropolitan areas with the most Energy Star certified buildings for 2011. The list of 25 cities is headed by Los Angeles, Washington, D.C., Atlanta, Chicago, San Francisco, New York, Houston, Dallas, Riverside, Calif., and Boston. By the end of 2011, said EPA, the nearly 16,500 Energy Star certified buildings across America have helped save nearly $2.3 billion in annual utility bills.

“More and more organizations are discovering the value of Energy Star as they work to cut costs and reduce their energy use,” said EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson.

First released in 2008, the list of cities with the most Energy Star certified buildings continues to show how cities across America, with help from Energy Star, are embracing energy efficiency as a simple and effective way to save money and prevent pollution, said EPA. Los Angeles has remained the top city since 2008, while Washington, D.C., continues to hold onto second place for the third year in a row. Atlanta moved up from the number six spot in 2010 to third place this year and Boston and Riverside broke into the top 10.

For the full list of 25 cities, Tampa, Fla., Colorado Springs, Colo., and Salt Lake City are all new to the list for 2011. California has six cities on the 2011 list — more than any other state.

Commercial buildings that earn EPA’s Energy Star must perform in the top 25 percent of similar buildings nationwide and must be independently verified by a licensed professional engineer or a registered architect. Energy Star certified buildings use an average of 35 percent less energy and are responsible for 35 percent less carbon dioxide emissions than typical buildings. Fifteen types of commercial buildings can earn the Energy Star, including office buildings, K-12 schools, and retail stores.

For more on the 2011 top cities, go to www.energystar.gov/ia/business/downloads/2011_Top_Cities_chart.pdf.

Publication date: 04/23/2012