|BeGreen Launches First-of-Its-Kind Calculator to Help Businesses Achieve Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) Certification|
Online Tool Allows Architects and Builders to Easily Calculate and Purchase Renewable Energy Credits to Gain Points for Achieving LEED Certification
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AUSTIN, Texas — June 24, 2008 — With the growing popularity of the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating system, Green Mountain Energy Company announced today the launch of its new Web-based BeGreen Business LEED calculator that makes it easy for businesses to calculate and purchase certified renewable energy credits (RECs) to qualify for Green Power points for LEED certification. BeGreen is Green Mountain’s one-stop shop for carbon offsets, RECs and other innovative carbon management and renewable energy products and services for businesses, institutions and individual consumers nationwide.
Designed for architects, builders and building managers, the BeGreen Business LEED calculator may be used with all four primary LEED certification types: new construction and major renovation, existing buildings, commercial interiors and core and shell construction (which includes base building elements such as structure, envelope and heating, ventilation and cooling systems). The tool allows businesses to calculate the number of RECs required to meet the Green Power LEED certification standard, based on actual or estimated energy usage. Users are provided with a summary of the energy usage and a cost estimate for purchasing the RECs.
LEED Made Simple
Businesses can easily calculate the estimated amount of RECs needed for LEED certification credit by entering basic information such as the building’s square footage, the type of LEED certification desired, the building’s principal activity and the number of years to be covered by the REC purchase. The calculator totals the amount per year, increasing the amount of RECs over the course of the contract to account for inefficiencies that may come as the building ages. With each purchase, businesses immediately receive a certificate of purchase and a power content label verifying that the RECs meet the Green Power LEED certification standard via e-mail.
BeGreen’s New Brand — BeGreen Business
The unveiling of the new BeGreen Business LEED calculator coincides with the launch of BeGreen Business — Green Mountain’s new carbon management brand identity for commercial and institutional customers. BeGreen Business provides commercial clients with innovative and cost effective carbon solutions designed to help improve their environmental position. The new branding platform simplifies and combines the identity of BeGreen’s business and consumer products.
“Each year, we’ve seen an increase in the number of businesses looking for help in navigating the often complicated LEED certification process," said Gillan Taddune, chief environmental officer of Green Mountain Energy Company. “And having been through the process of achieving LEED certification for our corporate offices in Austin, Texas, firsthand, we know what it’s like for businesses going down that path. We’re confident that this tool will make it easier for more companies to achieve LEED certification while ultimately reducing their collective environmental footprint at the same time.”
Since 2006, Green Mountain has provided RECs to businesses, such as Honda Motor Co., Herman Miller and Wachovia as part of LEED certification projects. With Herman Miller, for instance, BeGreen provides RECs for more than a dozen manufacturing sites and corporate office locations around the country.
“As a founder of the U.S. Green Building Council and an early adopter of its LEED program, we’ve welcomed the trend toward sustainable buildings as more and more businesses strive to reduce their global footprint through LEED certification each year,” said Mark Schurman, Herman Miller’s director of corporate communications. “BeGreen has been a valued partner in helping us progress in our own sustainable goals. We hope that this new tool will encourage and enable others to consider their own renewable energy strategy and LEED certification.”
BeGreen is a division of Green Mountain Energy Company, the longest serving green power provider in the U.S. BeGreen offers businesses and consumers simple and effective ways to reduce their carbon footprint through the purchase of renewable energy, forest sequestration and other project-based offsets. BeGreen’s carbon calculators follow the EPA Climate Leaders methodology, which is based on the World Resources Institute’s Greenhouse Gas Protocol (WRI GHG), a widely accepted industry standard. All purchases and sales of BeGreen’s carbon offset and REC products are also verified by an independent auditing firm to ensure their quality and effectiveness.
About Green Mountain Energy Company
Green Mountain, the nation’s leading provider of cleaner energy and carbon offset solutions, began in 1997 with a simple idea: “to change the way power is made.” The company offers consumers and businesses the choice of cleaner electricity products using renewable sources such as wind, water and solar that help reduce the amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) emitted into the air. Green Mountain customers have collectively helped avoid over 4.1 million tons of CO2 emissions .
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