The Environmental Protection Agency launched its first National Building Competition in April 2010. Fourteen buildings across the country competed to see who could reduce their energy use the most in a year. The winner was Morrison Residence Hall at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, with a reduction in energy use of 35.7 percent. Among a number of strategies, the residence hall retrofitted their lighting, replacing 54-watt CFLs with 13-watt CFLs.
In this year’s “Battle of the Buildings, ” 245 buildings across the nation are competing for the energy-saving challenge. So far, the 245 buildings have already saved a cumulative $3.7 million in energy costs and cut greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to what 2,300 homes would generate in a year.
It’s at the midway point (the winners will be announced November 2), and the EPA has announced the top contenders in each building category and their percentage of energy reduction to date. Another residence hall from UNC-Chapel Hill is in the mix, but there are quite a few buildings ahead of them!