SACRAMENTO, Calif. /California Newswire/ — In a move that will shrink the state’s environmental footprint and save millions of taxpayer dollars, California Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. issued a sweeping executive order today directing agencies and departments to take immediate steps to green the state’s buildings, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve energy efficiency.
“Doing something real about the growing threat of global warming requires more than just new laws. We must lead by example,” said Governor Brown. “Greening the state’s buildings will shrink our environmental footprint and save taxpayers millions of dollars.”
Today’s executive order calls for new or renovated state buildings larger than 10,000 square feet to achieve the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED “Silver” certification or higher and to incorporate clean, on-site power generation, such as solar photovoltaic, solar thermal and wind power generation and clean back-up power supplies.
The order also sets a target of zero net energy consumption for 50 percent of the square footage of existing state-owned buildings by 2025 and zero net energy consumption from all new or renovated state buildings beginning design after 2025.
Additionally, the executive order directs state agencies and departments to:
• Reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 10% by 2015 and 20% by 2020, as measured against a 2010 baseline;
• Reduce overall water use by 10% by 2015 and 20% by 2020, as measured against a 2010 baseline; and
• Reduce grid-based energy purchases and other non-building, grid-based retail energy purchases by 20% by 2018, as compared to a 2003 baseline.
Under the directive, state agencies and departments will also purchase and use environmentally preferable products and provide electric vehicle charging stations at employee parking facilities in new and existing buildings.
These measures could save taxpayers millions of dollars. For example, reducing state energy purchases by 20% by 2018 could save $45 million per year and reducing water use by 20% by 2020 could save $7 million per year and a billion gallons of water.
As a result of California’s efficiency policies, the state’s per capita use of electricity has remained virtually flat over the past 30 years, despite rapid economic growth. Since 1978, these policies have created 1.5 million jobs and saved Californians more than $1,000 per household.
California is home to more LEED certified buildings than any other state, with twice as many as the next state, Texas.
Governor Brown’s executive order is copied below:
Executive Order B-18-12
WHEREAS green building practices use energy, water, and materials efficiently throughout the building life cycle, enhance indoor and outdoor air quality, improve the health, productivity, and working lives of state employees, incorporate environmentally preferable products, and substantially reduce the costs and environmental impacts associated with operating State buildings; and
WHEREAS energy and water efficiency improvements in State buildings and operations save the State money and boost California’s economy by investing in green technology companies and green jobs; and
WHEREAS the California Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006 requires the State to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020 and beyond, and the energy used in buildings accounts for the second largest contribution to California’s greenhouse gas emissions.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Edmund G. Brown Jr., Governor of the State of California, do hereby issue the following orders to become effective immediately:
IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that State agencies, departments, and other entities under my direct executive authority (State agencies) take actions to reduce entity-wide greenhouse gas emissions by at least 10% by 2015 and 20% by 2020, as measured against a 2010 baseline.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that all new State buildings and major renovations beginning design after 2025 be constructed as Zero Net Energy facilities with an interim target for 50% of new facilities beginning design after 2020 to be Zero Net Energy. State agencies shall also take measures toward achieving Zero Net Energy for 50% of the square footage of existing state-owned building area by 2025.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that State agencies continue taking measures to reduce grid-based energy purchases for State-owned buildings by at least 20% by 2018, as compared to a 2003 baseline, and reduce other non-building, grid-based retail energy purchases by 20% by 2018, as compared to a 2003 baseline.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that State agencies participate in “demand response” programs to obtain financial benefits for reducing peak electrical loads when called upon, to the maximum extent that is cost-effective for each State-owned or leased facility, and does not materially adversely affect agency operations.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that any proposed new or major renovation of State buildings larger than 10,000 square feet use clean, on-site power generation, such as solar photovoltaic, solar thermal and wind power generation, and clean back-up power supplies, if economically feasible.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that new or major renovated State buildings and build-to-suit leases larger than 10,000 square feet obtain LEED “Silver” certification or higher, using the applicable version of LEED.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that new and existing buildings incorporate building commissioning to facilitate improved and efficient building operation.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that State agencies identify and pursue opportunities to provide electric vehicle charging stations, and accommodate future charging infrastructure demand, at employee parking facilities in new and existing buildings.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the Department of General Services work with other State agencies to develop by July 1, 2013, policies and guidelines for the operation and maintenance of State buildings to achieve operating efficiency improvements and water and resource conservation, and to continually update and incorporate these into the State Administrative Manual.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that State agencies implement relevant and feasible voluntary measures from Divisions A4.5 and A5.5 of the California Green Building Standards Code, to ensure healthy indoor environments for occupants.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that State agencies reduce overall water use at the facilities they operate by 10% by 2015 and by 20% by 2020, as measured against a 2010 baseline.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that State agencies purchase and use environmentally preferable products that have a lesser or reduced effect on human health and the environment when compared with competing goods that serve the same purpose whenever they are applicable, perform well, and are cost-effective per Public Contract Code section 12400.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that State agencies identify and pursue available financing and project-delivery mechanisms to achieve these goals.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that State agencies measure, monitor, report, and oversee progress on measures in this Order.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that State agencies implement the measures described in the accompanying Green Building Action Plan for facilities owned, funded, or leased by the state.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that Executive Order S-20-04 is rescinded immediately.
IT IS REQUESTED that entities of State government not under my direct executive authority also implement similar measures.
This Executive Order is not intended to create, and does not create, any rights or benefits, whether substantive or procedural, or enforceable at law or in equity, against the State of California or its agencies, departments, entities, officers, employees, or any other person.
I FURTHER DIRECT that as soon as hereafter possible, this Order shall be filed with the Office of the Secretary of State and that it be given widespread publicity and notice.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Great Seal of the State of California to be affixed this 25th day of April 2012.
EDMUND G. BROWN JR.
Governor of California
Secretary of State.