Caretakers of the Empire State Building announced that the architectural icon recently set a new standard for excellence by becoming the largest commercial purchaser of renewable power in the state.
According to the New York Times, the Empire State Building will purchase over 50 million kilowatt-hours worth of renewable energy certificates annually — enough to cover its yearly electricity consumption.
The two-year renewable energy contract was purchased from carbon offset retailer Green Mountain Energy Company (recently acquired by NRG Energy New Jersey), and will be sourced through wind power facilities.
The iconic building occupies about 2.85 million square feet and is estimated to use approximately 55 million kilowatt-hours of energy each year (Seer Press). By offsetting all of its electricity consumption, the Empire State Building will avoid 100 million pounds of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.
That’s the equivalent of:
- Nearly every house in New York State turning off all their lights for a week;
- Taking approximately 40 million fewer cab rides; or
- Planting nearly 150,000 trees–more than 6 times the number of trees in Central Park.
In July 2010, the Empire State Building unveiled a $2 million interactive, multi-media sustainability exhibit at the second floor visitor’s center, which showcases a $20 million energy retrofit project aimed at educating the millions of people who visit the building every year on the positive global impact of both energy-efficient building and sustainable living practices.
“It was a natural fit for us to combine 100% clean energy with our nearly completed, ground breaking energy efficiency retrofit work,” said Anthony E. Malkin, president of Malkin Holdings which supervises the Empire State Building.
“Clean energy and our nearly 40 percent reduced consumption of watts and BTUs gives us a competitive advantage in attracting the best credit tenants at the best rents,” Malkin continued. “Our program of innovation at the Empire State Building shows simple, replicable, non-proprietary steps for other landlords to follow to be more energy efficient, cleaner and greener.”
Image Credit: Flickr - Ami's