Looking Back, Looking Ahead at Energy Policy

“As a building operator, four years is a short period of time in a building’s life,” says Skodowski. “We’re going to be fine.” I was quoting Allan Skodowski, managing senior vice president and director of LEED and sustainability services at Transwestern, to wrap up my energy policy forecast article in Building Operating Management earlier this year. I wanted to finish on an optimistic note. It did not seem like a Pollyanna-ish choice. At the time I was conducting interviews, the new administration had just barely been sworn in. Most of my sources had an abundance of reserve with a sprinkle of optimism regarding the future of commercial real estate over the next four years. I've thought about that quote a lot over the intervening weeks. 

What's new since I wrote the article? Energy Star, for one, seems to be in greater peril than before and the industry has already started discussing what it would do in a post-Energy Star world. What has borne out? States and local jurisdictions are continuing to move forward on their own accord to address energy security and climate change, such as Atlanta recently passing legislation to go to all renewable energy by 2035, with all municipal facilities leading the way by 2025. 

It's still relatively early days, with a lot still on the table. What have you been thinking around your own facilities and energy policy at the national and local level? Have you changed your strategy, or are you staying the course of a strategy long established? I'd love to hear your thoughts. 

My energy policy forecast article was the March cover story for Building Operating Management. You can find it at http://www.facilitiesnet.com/17085bom


  • Al is right on target. Energy Star has helped thousands of buildings do a better job becoming more efficient, and saving money. All of us need to continue seeking improved performance. It is the intelligent choice for investors seeking the best returns. Many groups have announced their willingness to pick up the reins if EPA stops supporting Energy Star, but I can't imagine that the government won't support a program that has paid for itself many times over in cost savings and reductions in carbon emissions.
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