CLEVELAND, Dec. 19, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — Forest City Enterprises, Inc. (NYSE: FCEA and FCEB) today announced its participation in the Better Buildings Challenge, part of the Better Buildings Initiative, which was launched in February by President Barack Obama, and is being spearheaded by former President Bill Clinton and the President''s Council on Jobs and Competitiveness .
The initiative supports job creation by catalyzing private-sector investment in energy upgrades to make America''s commercial and industrial buildings 20 percent more efficient over the next decade, reducing energy costs for American businesses by nearly $40 billion.
"Sustainability is a core value for Forest City, and reducing energy consumption in our portfolio is not only the right thing to do, it also makes bottom-line sense," said David J. LaRue, Forest City president and chief executive officer. "The Better Buildings Challenge spotlights the importance of reducing energy consumption, while also demonstrating the positive business case for doing so. We''re pleased to partner with the U.S. Department of Energy on this innovative program."
As a partner of the Better Buildings Challenge, Forest City is committed to reduce energy consumption by 20 percent by 2020 across a 14-million-square-foot segment of its overall real estate portfolio.
Jon Ratner, Forest City''s vice president of Energy and Sustainability, along with other private-sector leaders, met with President Obama and former President Clinton at the White House earlier this month as part of a national dialogue on making U.S. buildings more efficient.
Forest City is already engaged in a range of energy-saving initiatives across its portfolio, including the following examples:
A comprehensive efficient lighting retrofit at Tower City Center, a 2.8 million-square-foot mixed-use property in Cleveland, Ohio. Supported by a State of Ohio grant from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, the initiative involved replacing thousands of lamps and fixtures, and is expected to realize annual energy savings of 1.4 million KWH, cutting annual greenhouse gas emissions by 982 metric tons of carbon dioxide .
Installation of a 355 KW solar array at the company''s Midtown Towers apartment community in suburban Cleveland. The project received funding from a $1 million grant from the State of Ohio. The array is expected to offset approximately 40 percent of the property''s annual energy use, the equivalent to removing 246 tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere per year.
In addition to these and many other property-level initiatives, approximately 17 percent, by cost, of Forest City''s total real estate portfolio of more than 210 retail, office and apartment properties has achieved some form of sustainability related certification, including EnergyStar, LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design), and other similar programs.
To learn more about Forest City''s sustainability initiatives, visit http://www.forestcity.net/
Logo courtesy of Forestcity.com