Seattle Properties Among First Multifamily Buildings to Earn Energy Star Certification
New York, November 13, 2014 — TIAA-CREF, a U.S. financial services organization and one of the world's leading real estate investors, has been recognized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as being among the first multifamily housing owners to earn Energy Star certifications.
A total of 17 multifamily properties are being recognized with Energy Star ratings. Of those, three properties — the Aspira , Circa Green Lake and the Prescott Wallingford apartments, all in Seattle — are owned by TIAA-CREF. The recognition signifies that these pioneering properties are more energy efficient than 75 percent of similar properties nationwide. In addition, the City of Seattle, which requires annual benchmarking and reporting of energy performance, has profiled the Aspira's success on its web site (PDF).
This is the first time existing multifamily properties have been eligible for Energy Star certification. Previously, only new construction multifamily properties had been able to earn certification by meeting prescriptive design requirements for high performance.
"This recognition offers validation for the work we have been doing to reduce energy consumption across our portfolio," said Nick Stolatis, TIAA-CREF's Senior Director and Head of Global Sustainability. "Through this achievement, we have further demonstrated our commitment to protecting the environment, serving our community and lowering costs for our residents."
"TIAA-CREF's achievement demonstrates that it's possible to overcome the many traditional barriers to energy efficiency in the multifamily housing market and reap significant energy and cost savings," said Jean Lupinacci, Chief of the Energy Star program for commercial and industrial buildings. "Through the example they've set, we see how we can all help to make properties more cost-effective for renters, while cutting greenhouse gas emissions."
According to the EPA, energy costs for renters have risen by 20 percent on average over the past decade, so energy efficiency represents a significant opportunity to reduce utility costs and the greenhouse gas emissions associated with the production of energy, which contribute to climate change. Energy Star certified buildings use an average of 35 percent less energy and are responsible for 35 percent fewer carbon dioxide emissions than typical buildings. Many types of commercial buildings can earn the Energy Star, such as office buildings, K-12 schools, hotels, and retail stores.
The new 1-100 Energy Star score and certification for existing multifamily properties is based on nationally representative survey data provided by Fannie Mae and will be integrated into other green building certification programs, including the U.S. Green Building Council's popular Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design rating system.
TIAA-CREF (www.tiaa.org) is a national financial services organization with $840 billion in total assets under management (as of 10.1.14) and is the leading provider of retirement services in the academic, research, medical and cultural fields.
TIAA-CREF Individual & Institutional Services, LLC, Teachers Personal Investors Services, Inc., and Nuveen Securities, LLC, Members FINRA and SIPC, distribute securities products.
About Energy Star
For more than 20 years, people across America have looked to EPA's Energy Star program for guidance on how to save energy, save money, and protect the environment. Behind each blue label is a product, building, or home that is independently certified to use less energy and cause fewer of the emissions that contribute to climate change. Today, Energy Star is the most widely recognized symbol for energy efficiency in the world, helping families and businesses save $300 billion on utility bills, while reducing greenhouse gas emissions by two billion metric tons since 1992. Join the millions who are already making a difference at energystar.gov.
More on the first multifamily properties to earn Energy Star ratings: www.energystar.gov/multifamilyhousing