DOE launches high-efficiency indoor lighting campaign for commercial buildings; honors Advanced Roof-top Unit Campaign partners, Green Lease Leaders

by Brianna Crandall — May 29, 2015—On Wednesday, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) launched a new indoor lighting campaign to increase the use of high-efficiency lighting technologies in commercial buildings. Through the Better Buildings Alliance, the Department is working with key stakeholders and end users in both the public and private sectors to install and demonstrate advanced technologies. Additionally, the Department recognized Advanced Roof-top Unit Campaign (ARC) partners and Green Lease Leaders for collaboration between building owners, landlords, and tenants to improve energy efficiency.

Interior Lighting Campaign

Currently, interior lighting accounts for 20% of U.S. commercial buildings energy use. More energy efficient troffer lighting offers savings of 25% (57 kilowatt-hours) or $6 over a typical T8 troffer used today. The Better Building Alliance’s Interior Lighting Campaign (ILC) will support building owners as they commit to upgrade current fluorescent lights. The goal for the first year is for partners to install 100,000 high-efficiency troffers and share their success and learning with others. Upgrading 100,000 fixtures can reduce energy use by 5 million kWh, cut greenhouse gas emissions by 3,000 metric tons of carbon, and save $500,000 in electricity bills annually, estimates DOE.

Advanced Roof-top Unit Campaign

Similar to ILC, the Advanced Roof-top Unit Campaign (ARC) is part of a suite of efforts designed to accelerate the adoption of new technologies. On Wednesday, the Energy Department also announced ARC results of building owners that are replacing or retrofitting the aging heating and cooling technologies installed on roofs of many of U.S. commercial buildings. Since 2013, ARC has spurred over 190 public and private sector organizations to replace or retrofit 40,000 high-efficiency commercial building roof-top units, saving 4 trillion BTUs of energy or $37 million dollars.

The following organizations were recognized for achieving significant energy savings by replacing or retrofitting RTUs:

  • adidas for its innovative RTU management approach and updates to the equipment replacement strategy from replace-upon-failure to proactive replacement;
  • Target gained the largest efficiency improvement from a single building RTU replacement project, as well as the largest efficiency gain for a multi-building RTU replacement project;
  • U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, U.S. General Services Administration, Pizzagalli Properties, and Elman Investors installed 66 RTUs, the most installed on one building;
  • U.S. Navy, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam retrofitted 30 RTUs with advanced controls, resulting in over 100 kWh of energy savings;
  • Walmart Stores Inc. completed over 10,000 high-efficiency RTU installations in new and existing stores; and
  • Whole Foods Market retrofitted 107 RTUs with advanced controls, resulting in an estimated 836,535 kWh of energy savings.

Green Lease Leaders

In 2013, the Better Buildings Alliance deployed the Green Lease Leaders program. On average, DOE calculates that about 10-20% can be saved each month on a building’s energy and water bills with a green lease. This year, Green Lease Leaders signed leases representing 415 million square feet, with the culminated square footage totaling 800 million square feet.

The following organizations were recognized as Green Lease Leaders for their leadership as landlords, tenants, and brokers.


  • Bentall Kennedy
  • Boston Properties
  • Cadillac Fairview
  • Deutsche Asset & Wealth Management*
  • Forest City Enterprises*
  • NEO Realty Group
  • Shorenstein Properties*
  • Weingarten Realty Investors


  • TD Bank
  • Capital One


  • Laurie McMahon, DTZ
  • Sally Wilson, Newmark Grubb Knight Frank
  • Greta Garner, Green Coast Realty
  • Meade Boutwell, CBRE
  • Randolph (Randy) Harrell, CBRE
  • Brant Smith, NEO Realty Group

* The starred organizations are also committed to achieving a 20-percent energy savings goal in ten years through the DOE’s Better Buildings Challenge.

Read more about Better Buildings partner results, and the innovative solutions being shared with others, in the Better Buildings Solution Center.