The ongoing energy-efficiency work at the Empire State Building has achieved another milestone on its journey toward sustainability leadership in the commercial real estate community by receiving its second Energy Star certification from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Energy Star recognition was a stated objective in the iconic property’s overall sustainability retrofit initiative, which launched in April 2009.

“Receiving an Energy Star rating is a significant accomplishment for any building, and we are proud that our prewar trophy Empire State Building has again qualified,” said Anthony E. Malkin of Malkin Holdings, which directs the operation of the international icon on behalf of building owner Empire State Building Co. (ESB). “This is only a part of our ongoing commitment to sustainability and reduced environmental impact.”

In April 2009, ESB, alongside former President Bill Clinton and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, announced details of the groundbreaking $20 million sustainability retrofit aimed at reducing energy consumption, and operating costs. The replicable program will reduce energy usage by more than 38 percent and save the building more than $4.4 million annually. Key initiatives include the introduction of tenant energy management systems to allow for efficient control of power usage.

ESB further strengthened its sustainability efforts in 2011 by announcing the use of 100 percent wind power, becoming New York’s largest commercial purchaser of renewable energy. Most recently, ESB shared details of a multiyear contract with Otis to fully refurbish and modernize the building’s 68 elevators. As a result of this upgrade, regenerated energy will be returned back into the building grid, reducing elevator energy by 30 percent.

In addition to Energy Star certification, the work at the Empire State Building would qualify under current standards for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design—Existing Buildings Gold certification from the United States Green Building Council.