WASHINGTON — The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) released its annual list of the Top 10 States for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), ranking states in terms of square feet of LEED space per state resident.
“Every story about a green building is a story about people,” said Rick Fedrizzi, CEO and founding chair, USGBC. “USGBC’s annual recognition of the Top 10 States for LEED goes beyond gross square footage or number of projects and factors in LEED’s potential in a given state to be part of the daily life of the state’s residents. This per-capita approach tells a great story about how LEED has become an important benchmark in the transformation of the nation’s built environment. LEED-certified buildings and the innovations they have driven contribute substantially to our national economic growth, create jobs, and improve the quality of life in the communities where they are found.”
Illinois retained its top national position for the second year in a row with 174 LEED certifications representing 3.31 square feet of LEED-certified space per resident.
Two newcomers to the list, Georgia and Arizona, show that 2014 was a year of major growth for LEED in the South and Southwest, while the continued strong performance of Maryland and Virginia helped the mid-Atlantic region remain the epicenter of green building across the country. Washington, District of Columbia, which is not included on the official list of top states due to its status as a federal territory, is notable as it continues to lead the nation with 29.44 square feet of space per resident certified in 2014. Maryland and Virginia finished third and fourth, respectively, and both states increased their per capita totals to 2.70 and 2.33 square feet of LEED space per resident, respectively, in 2014.
The 2014 list had the highest average (2.34) of per capita space certified per resident per state since 2010, and the second highest average to date. Illinois and Colorado are the only two states to make the list every year since 2010. The full ranking is as follows: Illinois, Colorado, Maryland, Virginia, Massachusetts, Hawaii, California, Georgia, Minnesota, and Arizona and New York tied for 10th place.
Collectively, 1,662 commercial and institutional projects became LEED-certified within the top 10 states in 2014, representing 251.7 million square feet of real estate. Now in its fifth year, the per-capita list is based on 2010 U.S. Census data and includes commercial and institutional green building projects certified throughout 2014.
Publication date: 3/2/2015