Obama Administration Poised to Advancing a Cost-efficient and Energy-saving Green Building Agenda

New report identifies immediate opportunities for advancing a cost-efficient and energy-saving green
building agenda
Washington, DC (April 29, 2010) – The Obama Administration is authorized to play a more active and
supportive role in encouraging and progressing the energy efficiency and sustainability of America’s
multifamily and commercial building stock, according to a report released today by the U.S. Green
Building Council (USGBC) and other leading organizations in energy, housing, environment and real
estate.
The legal analysis, “Using Executive Authority to Achieve Greener Buildings: A Guide for Policymakers to
Enhance Sustainability and Efficiency in Multifamily Housing and Commercial Buildings,” concludes that
under current executive authority, the Obama Administration has the ability to use over 30 existing federal
programs worth $72 billion to enhance efficiency in commercial buildings and multifamily housing, with no
new legislation.
“As an early adopter of green buildings and the LEED green building certification system, the federal
government has been a leader in bringing green buildings to cities and towns across America,” said
Roger Platt, Senior Vice President, Global Policy & Law, USGBC. “This new report unveils an even larger
opportunity for the Obama Administration to increase our nation’s energy efficiency, while creating
thousands of jobs and saving taxpayers money.”
The report presents an extensive menu of options, across an array of programs, which the Obama
Administration could begin implementing immediately without having to seek new funds or authority from
Congress. Some of the most promising options with the largest reach include:
• Reforming appraisal and underwriting practices at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac;
• “Greening” federal banking regulation;
• Promoting flexible FHA insurance products, especially Section 241;
• Integrating energy efficiency and sustainability criteria into competitive grants and funding
formulas;
• Strengthening minimum property standards for federal housing and economic development
programs to reflect energy efficiency and sustainability standards;
• Improving performance standards applicable to federal buildings and leases;
• Refining guidance applicable to the energy efficient commercial buildings tax deduction and the
national historic preservation tax credit ;
• Using SBA funding mechanisms to support small business energy efficiency investments
• Streamlining Title 17 loan guarantees to make them suitable for buildings.
The report was prepared by Van Ness Feldman. Other sponsors of the report include The Real Estate
Roundtable, UDR, Johnson Controls, Inc., The Energy Foundation, Building Owners and Managers
Association International, The American Institute of Architects (AIA), Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning

Obama Administration Poised to Take Immediate Action to Help Transform America’s BuildingStockNew report identifies immediate opportunities for advancing a cost-efficient and energy-saving greenbuilding agendaWashington, DC (April 29, 2010) – The Obama Administration is authorized to play a more active andsupportive role in encouraging and progressing the energy efficiency and sustainability of America’smultifamily and commercial building stock, according to a report released today by the U.S. GreenBuilding Council (USGBC) and other leading organizations in energy, housing, environment and realestate.The legal analysis, “Using Executive Authority to Achieve Greener Buildings: A Guide for Policymakers toEnhance Sustainability and Efficiency in Multifamily Housing and Commercial Buildings,” concludes thatunder current executive authority, the Obama Administration has the ability to use over 30 existing federalprograms worth $72 billion to enhance efficiency in commercial buildings and multifamily housing, with nonew legislation.“As an early adopter of green buildings and the LEED green building certification system, the federalgovernment has been a leader in bringing green buildings to cities and towns across America,” saidRoger Platt, Senior Vice President, Global Policy & Law, USGBC. “This new report unveils an even largeropportunity for the Obama Administration to increase our nation’s energy efficiency, while creatingthousands of jobs and saving taxpayers money.”The report presents an extensive menu of options, across an array of programs, which the ObamaAdministration could begin implementing immediately without having to seek new funds or authority fromCongress. Some of the most promising options with the largest reach include:• Reforming appraisal and underwriting practices at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac;• “Greening” federal banking regulation;• Promoting flexible FHA insurance products, especially Section 241;• Integrating energy efficiency and sustainability criteria into competitive grants and fundingformulas;• Strengthening minimum property standards for federal housing and economic developmentprograms to reflect energy efficiency and sustainability standards;• Improving performance standards applicable to federal buildings and leases;• Refining guidance applicable to the energy efficient commercial buildings tax deduction and thenational historic preservation tax credit ;• Using SBA funding mechanisms to support small business energy efficiency investments• Streamlining Title 17 loan guarantees to make them suitable for buildings.The report was prepared by Van Ness Feldman. Other sponsors of the report include The Real EstateRoundtable, UDR, Johnson Controls, Inc., The Energy Foundation, Building Owners and ManagersAssociation International, The American Institute of Architects (AIA), Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning

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