The White House-sponsored Better Buildings Initiative is looking to improve energy efficiency among commercial and multifamily building stock while likely adding more than 114,000 new jobs according to an analysis by The Real Estate Roundtable (RER).
The program, which was announced in January 2011, is a series of proposed legislation and actions by federal agencies targeting the improved efficiency of commercial building. By activating private sector spending in upgrades and retrofits, the initiative hopes to add construction-industry jobs.
The RER, USGBC and Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) recently commissioned the Political Economy Research Institute to analyze the Better Buildings Initiative to assess its potential to create jobs. According to the study:
- The Better Buildings Initiative would create more than 114,000 jobs.
- Over 77,000 new jobs would derive from a revised tax incentive to encourage building retrofits
- Jobs created at construction sites would spur more jobs in the manufacturing and private sectors
- Tax incentive would encourage at least three time as much private investment to make buildings more efficient.
- In all, savings to businesses in energy bills is expected to surpass $1.4 billion.
“This plan will help bring lenders into the retrofit market to provide financing for commercial building efficiency projects,” says Ashok Gupta, director of energy policy at the NRDC. “Improving buildings’ energy performance reduces harmful pollution associated with energy production while reducing bills for consumers and making business more competitive.”
A summary of the report can be downloaded at usgbc.org/advocacy/BBIJobs.