The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) has earned its fourth ENERGY STAR designation for the National Housing Center, the downtown Washington, D.C. office building that serves as the association's headquarters.
The designation recognizes buildings that conserve natural resources while providing a comfortable and healthy environment for employees and visitors.
Since the building was significantly expanded and renovated in 2001, the Housing Center's property manager, Transwestern, has continued to fine-tune the details of the original energy-efficient construction project. This year, the improvements included at least two measures that consumers can try at home, said NAHB Executive Vice President Jerry Howard.
"We continue to replace traditional incandescent light bulbs with compact florescent light bulbs, which use two-thirds of the energy and last 10 times longer," Howard said. "We have also installed more motion detectors in little-used rooms rather than leave the lights on when they aren't in use."
Transwestern staff also regularly inspects and maintains the heating and air conditioning equipment used in the building to optimize its performance and prolong its life, Howard said. The Housing Center's continued ENERGY STAR designations save money and energy while they also send a strong signal regarding housing industry support for voluntary energy guidelines, he added.
"Many of our members build homes with appliances and heating and cooling systems that meet the ENERGY STAR guidelines. In fact, more than 800,000 ENERGY STAR-rated homes have been constructed in the past 10 years," Howard noted. "These home builders' business practices show how NAHB members are at the forefront of green building - and that's reflected in how we operate our national headquarters."
A plaque recognizing the ENERGY STAR achievement has been posted near the building's entrance.