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AstraZeneca earns top billing for green buildings

Release Date: 11/25/2008
Contact Information: Bonnie Smith, EPA, (215) 814-5543, smith.bonnie@epa.gov / Kate Klemas, AstraZeneca (302) 885-4642, kate.klemas@AstraZeneca.com

PHILADELPHIA (November 25, 2008) - Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Donald S. Welsh presented AstraZeneca with two ENERGY STAR labels for its energy-efficient buildings in Wilmington, Delaware. Only the top 25-percent of energy efficient buildings nationwide receive this distinctive label.

The U.S. Green Buildings Council also recognized AstraZeneca with its prestigious certification for green buildings. L.E.E.D is the leading certification process for sustainable building design granted by the U.S. Green Building Council.

"As our nation is shifting to a green culture, our ENERGY STAR partners are leading the way," said Donald S. Welsh, mid-Atlantic regional administrator. "We commend each company and each employee for their insightful work and dedication in creating green buildings. ENERGY STAR and L.E.E.D. certified buildings are a living commitment to a cleaner, greener and healthier America."

By developing meaningful partnerships with public and non-profit organizations, including EPA and the U.S. Green Building Council, AstraZeneca is building on its efforts to serve patients by conserving energy and designing sustainable buildings. "We’re working to help make the world a healthier place, so people feel better inside and out,” said Kathy Monday, Vice President of AstraZeneca’s U.S. Operations and Business Services.

Energy use in commercial buildings and manufacturing plants accounts for nearly half of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions and nearly 50 percent of energy consumption nationwide. ENERGY STAR labeled commercial buildings and manufacturing plants across the country have saved nearly $1.5 billion annually in lower energy bills and prevented carbon dioxide emissions equal to the emissions associated with electricity use of more than 1.5 million American homes for a year, relative to typical buildings.

EPA's ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager helps rate a building's energy performance relative to similar buildings nationwide. Although AstraZeneca had made energy efficiency improvements, its first ranking was not as good as it expected. AstraZeneca discovered the building's electric meter was not hooked up correctly. Once the problem was remedied, the company not only showed a higher energy rating in Portfolio Manager, it got a $1 million rebate from its utility supplier.

An AstraZeneca team drove energy efficient improvements ranging from simple steps like adding window blinds to reducing the amount of cooling needed in the summer, to more complex changes as high efficiency electric motors. Innovative building features, such as passive solar panels, a trombe wall and geo-thermal technology, powers 18 percent of one AstraZeneca building’s energy needs.

ENERGY STAR labeled buildings meet specific energy performance and indoor air quality requirements certified by a professional engineer. ENERGY STAR labeled office buildings typically use nearly 40 percent less energy than average buildings, with no compromise in comfort. They also emit 35 percent less carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, offering a significantly smaller carbon footprint.

AstraZeneca joins an elite group of office buildings nationwide that have earned the ENERGY STAR label, including five other facilities in Wilmington: the Veterans Administration Medical Center; Community Service Building; L. Caleb Boggs U.S. Courthouse/Federal Building; Shortlidge Academy; and Warner Elementary School.

To learn more about Energy Star buildings and facilities see http://www.energystar.gov/buildings.

To find Energy Star buildings and industrial facilities in your area: http://www.energystar.gov/LabeledList