Here’s a roundup of some of the most recent businesses that have earned the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification. These include luxury hotel Fairmont Pittsburgh, office building Bank of America Tower, Frito-Lay, education services provider Pearson, and multi-tenant building Atlantic Center Plaza.
Here are highlights for each LEED certification project.
Atlantic Center Plaza: The plaza is the first multi-tenant building in Midtown Atlanta and the first managed by Colonial Properties Trust to earn LEED Gold as an existing building. The building implemented several programs to save water, improve energy efficiency, and reduce waste, reports Earth Times. As an example, a condensate water recovery system used for supplementing cooling tower water and irrigation saved more than 200,000 gallons of water during its first year of use.
Other projects include the installation of a CO2 demand control system, lighting occupancy controls and lighting retrofits. The use of single stream recycling has resulted in 50 percent less waste going to the landfill.
Because of these energy-efficient and conservation strategies Atlantic Center Plaza earned a 92 Energy Star rating and was recently named a Bronze Partner by The Partnership for a Sustainable Georgia.
Bank of America Tower: The 55-story office building at One Bryant Park officially has achieved Platinum LEED certification for the core and shell of the building, reports Sustainable Business.
The office building, touted as the first in the world designed and constructed to LEED Platinum standards, has implemented several features that protect indoor air quality, prevent mold, conserve water, save energy and reduce waste. However, the 4.6-megawatt co-generation plant installed in One Bryant Park, which provides approximately 65 percent of the building’s energy, was a key component in achieving enough points to win LEED Platinum certification, according to the article.
Fairmont Pittsburgh: The new luxury hotel, touted as the only LEED certified hotel in the city, received LEED certification at the Gold level.
Fairmont Pittsburgh is part of Three PNC Plaza, a 23-story high-rise owned by The PNC Financial Services Group. Three PNC Plaza is said to be one of the nation’s largest green, mixed-use buildings.
The hotel has implemented several energy-saving features, including the use of LED and compact fluorescent bulbs, guestroom occupancy sensors, and access to natural light, which are expected to cut the hotel’s annually lighting energy use by 75,000 kWh and CO2 emissions by 97,500 lbs (45 metric tons) annually.
In addition, approximately 80 percent of all equipment and appliances used in the project are Energy Star compliant, which will annually reduce energy use by about 100,000 kWh and CO2 emissions by 130,000 lbs (60 metric tons). By installing water conserving fixtures, including low-flow toilets, aerators and automatic sensors on the public restroom sinks, the hotel will save about 930,000 gallons of water annually.
Pearson’s Sandy, Utah, facility: Pearson’s facility achieved its LEED certification for Commercial Interiors through several environmentally friendly construction and development practices. The facility was designed with high-efficiency lighting and controls to reduce energy use and used materials and a configuration that maximize natural lighting and maintain optimal air flow throughout the building.
The project also used mostly recycled furniture and construction materials, fabricated finishes from sustainable sources as well as installed plumbing that conserves water.
PepsiCo’s Frito-Lay Perry facility: The Perry, Ga., facility became the state’s first building to be awarded LEED for Existing Buildings (EB) Gold certification. To achieve certification, the Perry facility implemented a number of green design and construction features, as well as water reduction technologies and practices.
As an example, Perry facility has reduced its natural gas consumption by 35 percent and its electricity use by 27 percent per pound of product since 2000 by implementing changes such as installing waste heat recovery boilers, improved maintenance systems, and upgraded oven burners.
It also has reduced its water consumption by 38 percent per pound of product since 2000 through a company-wide low water corn cook process, and installing low-flow solar-powered faucets and flush valves. In addition, none of the site’s process wastewater goes to the sewer. All of the process wastewater is used to irrigate the facility’s 1,500-acre lot.
It also improved waste management. Less than 1 percent of the Perry facility’s solid waste goes to landfill as of July 2010.