University of California-Berkeley buildings receive LEED Silver certification

September 27, 2011

The U.S. Green Building Council has announced that Durant Hall on the University of California-Berkeley campus has earned the official LEED Silver certification, according to The Daily Californian.

This designation serves as recognition for the environmentally-friendly practices implemented in the building and the use of energy-efficient technology. Two years of top-to-bottom renovations for the structure led to the award, reported the news source.

“Future steps involve actually educating occupants and visitors about utilizing the sustainable features of the building, as well as maintaining the sustainable operations,” Sruti Bharat, a lead program coordinator of Building Sustainability at the University, told the Californian.

New mechanical and electrical systems that were used for Durant Hall exceeded California’s mandated energy-efficiency standards by 17 percent and modern upgrades were installed throughout the building to minimize the use of electricity, according to the UC Berkeley News Center.

Efforts to increase the number of energy efficient buildings are growing across the country, as 40 percent of the total energy consumption in America is attributed to 5 million commercial buildings. Specific projects like the GPIC Initiative are testing structures that could serve as a model for the rest of the U.S.

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