Washington, D.C. — (Jan 25, 2017) — Today, the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) released its national ranking of the top states in the country for LEED green building and Washington is the ninth state in the nation for 2016.  The annual list highlights states throughout the country that made significant strides in sustainable building design, construction and transformation over the past year.  With a total of 105 LEED certified projects representing 2.25 square feet of certified space per resident, Washington is leading the charge in the green building movement in the United States.

“Washington has been a phenomenal trailblazer in green building and LEED certifications and is leading the way toward a more sustainable future for generations to come,” said Mahesh Ramanujam, president and CEO of USGBC. “The success of LEED could not happen without support from states likes Washington that believe in being environmentally and socially responsible and have committed to transforming the built environment. With each new LEED certification, we are lowering carbon emissions, creating a healthier environment, driving economic growth and prioritizing sustainable practices that will positively impact the way residents, communities and cities live, work and play.”

According to USGBC’s 2015 Green Building Economic Impact Study, LEED construction is expected to support 147,000 jobs and impact GDP by $12.87 billion from 2015-2018 in Washington.

“Washington continues to set the pace of LEED certifications nationally as we absorb leading tech company expansions into the Pacific Northwest,” said Tom Paladino, CEO of Paladino and Company and an integral co-creator of the original LEED program. “Why are they coming? Fortune brands are discovering that a sustainability platform simply furthers their ability to continue. As one of the top 10 states ranked for healthy living, we have a robust economy and an attractive lifestyle for people that work to live. As the number two state economically, we’ve proven a community can prosper at the intersection of business, design and the environment.”

Now in its seventh year, the ranking assesses the total square feet of LEED-certified space per resident based on U.S. Census data and includes commercial and institutional green building projects certified during 2016. The full ranking is as follows:

LEED Green Building
*Included in 2015 Top 10 States for LEED list

**Washington, D.C. is not ranked as it is a federal district, not a state

A few notable projects that certified in Washington in 2016 include:

  • Google Phase II in Kirkland; LEED Platinum
  • Bainbridge Island Museum of Art in Bainbridge Island; LEED Gold
  • Allen Institute for Brain Science in Seattle; LEED Gold

Collectively, 1,819 commercial and institutional projects achieved LEED certification within the Top 10 States for LEED in 2016, representing 309.12 gross square feet of real estate. Across the United States, 3,366 projects were certified in 2016, representing 470.39 million square feet.

The LEED green building certification system is the foremost program for the design, construction, maintenance and operations of green buildings. More than 59,000 commercial, neighborhood and residential projects are currently LEED certified, comprising more than 6 billion square feet of construction space in all 50 states in the U.S. and in more than 164 countries and territories globally.


About the U.S. Green Building Council

The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) is committed to a prosperous and sustainable future through cost-efficient and energy-saving green buildings. USGBC works toward its mission of market transformation through its LEED green building program, robust educational offerings, a nationwide network of chapters and affiliates, the annual Greenbuild International Conference & Expo, the Center for Green Schools and advocacy in support of public policy that encourages and enables green buildings and communities. For more information, visit usgbc.org and connect on TwitterFacebook and LinkedIn.


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