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CO, NC, MA, WI, HA, Utah Starting Building Retrofit Programs

green building houston courthouseA pilot program will help institute energy efficiency building retrofit programs in six states.

The National Governors Association announced the program, which is funded by the U.S. Department of Energy as part of its $11 billion building retrofit and weatherization stimulus program, according to a press release.

Colorado, Hawaii, Massachusetts, North Carolina, Utah and Wisconsin were selected to participate in the program, which officially is called the Policy Academy on State Building Efficiency Retrofit Programs.

The program will help states develop and refine policy options such as funding and financing mechanisms to encourage building retrofits, as well as building energy use benchmarking tools.

The program also will develop outreach, education and workforce training.

The end goal of the program is to help states decrease building energy use and related emissions, as well as create new jobs.

Building retrofits will run the gamut from air sealing and insulation to upgrading or replacing heating or hot water systems, as well as lighting upgrades, window replacement and the addition of solar thermal hot water.

Companies retrofitting buildings will be encouraged to use Energy Star appliances, as well as install energy management systems.

In one estimation of the retrofit and renovation market activity by value, green building currently accounts for five to nine percent, which equates to a $2 billion to $4 billion marketplace for major projects, according to a new report from McGraw-Hill Construction. By 2014, this share is projected to grow to 20-30 percent, making it a $10 billion to $15 billion market for major retrofit projects.

Another recent study predicted that companies providing energy efficiency consulting services to U.S. commercial building owners are expected to make about $5.6 billion a year.

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