California Wins 4 LEED Gold Ratings

Four California State buildings have earned LEED Gold ratings, the state has announced. The four are in Sacramento ’s 1.6 million-square-foot Capitol Area East End Complex. They house the California Department of Health Care Services and the Department of Public Health.The green push comes as a result of the Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger-initiated Global Warming Solutions Act and the Green Building Initiative. These require state agencies to cut energy use by 20 percent at state-owned buildings before 2015. The initiative also mandates that all new and existing state buildings must fulfill at least the minimum of the LEED Silver requirements to save energy, conserve water, cut greenhouse gas emissions, and divert waste from landfills.  It further directs an ongoing drive for LEED certification for maintenance and operations on all buildings that have already previously received LEED certification for new construction.The four buildings earning gold ratings did so thanks to improvements in central HVAC, mechanical and lighting systems, and an ENERGY STAR-compliant cool roof, as well as energy efficient measures that are expected to be 30 percent above those achieved by the current California Building Codes. In addition, these new methods are predicted to cut waste going to landfills by about 140 tons each year, to use 265 tons of salvaged marble and enable 12,272 tons of construction and demolition waste to be recycled. Currently, 13 California state buildings are LEED certified, and more than 200 new state buildings are being designed and constructed to achieve LEED certification. Also, some 200 existing state facilities are pursuing LEED certification for operations and maintenance practices.