US Energy-Saving Embassy Makeovers ‘Sweep’ Europe and show just how simple it can be to green public buildings
The Alliance to Save Energy and the U.S. State Department’s League of Green Embassies have launched an “Energy Efficiency Sweep of Europe”. The initiative, which will run until spring 2012, will result in energy and money savings at the residences and offices of 11 U.S. ambassadors across Europe. It was inspired by the successful Alliance-League collaboration on an energy efficiency makeover of the historic Brussels residence of U.S. Ambassador to Belgium Howard Guttman unveiled last April at EE Global, a joint event with the Alliance to Save Energy and EU-ASE.
Ten companies have contributed energy-efficient equipment to the sweep, including LED lighting, wireless radiator controls, water conservation products, energy-efficient appliances, window film, energy-efficient power strips and chargers and educational kiosks. The U.S. Department of State has provided $500,000 to defray some of the costs of 11-city sweep. Participating embassies will handle the logistics and coordinate the retrofits.
Commenting on the sweep, U.S. Ambassador to Finland and League Chair Bruce Oreck said: “The Sweep of Europe will help the federal government of the United States meet its own aggressive targets for greening its fleet of buildings*. What better example than having U.S. Ambassadors lead in our new relationship with energy in the 21st century”.
Monica Frassoni, President of the European Alliance to Save Energy, added, “As EU Member State governments deliberate the Energy Efficiency Directive, they would do well to note the efforts of the US government. The initiative has shown that greening government buildings is possible with relatively little cost or effort, it is an initiative that could easily rolled out across many government buildings in all 27 EU member states.”
The upgrades will take place in Berlin, Germany (to be unveiled in March 2012); Bern, Switzerland (December 6, 2011); Bratislava, Slovakia (December 6); Lisbon, Portugal (December 7); Madrid, Spain (November 28); Paris, France (spring 2012); Rome, Italy (January 2012); Sofia, Bulgaria (December 13); Warsaw, Poland (December 6) and Vienna, Austria (in conjunction with the embassy’s Green Business Expo May 11-13, 2012).
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*In January2010, the President Obama announced a Federal Government-wide GHG emissions reduction targets for 2020 from 2008 levels of 28 percent of direct emissions , these included building energy use. Source: http://www.whitehouse.gov/administration/eop/ceq/sustainability