Energy Star-certified buildings are on the rise in the United States! In 2010 alone, the number of Energy Star buildings in big cities has doubled in size compared to the past ten years combined. A qualified building must use on average 35 percent less energy and emit 35 percent less carbon emissions to be certified by the government as an Energy Star building. We’re thrilled to see greener buildings gaining momentum across the states – read on to see which cities made the biggest gains!

Energy Star, EPA, top ten cities, Carbon Emissions, Smart Planet, sustainable design, green design, top energy star cities, most energy star buildings, green building, sustainable architecture, energy-efficient architecture

In 2008, only a paltry two cities had over 150 Energy Star buildings. The country has caught up to the benefits of energy efficiency, as now nine out of ten of the top cities in the U.S. boast over 150 Energy Efficient buildings, with 6,200 soon to be certified nationwide.

The new buildings have reduced CO2 emissions by a figure comparable to the emissions of 1.3 million homes. Aside from saving energy and waste, these buildings are also saving a lot of money – to the tune of $1.9 billion dollars a year.

And the winners are:

1. Los Angeles (510 Energy Star buildings, $117.9 cost savings in millions)
2. Washington D.C. (301, $74.2)
3. San Francisco (248, $75.1)
4. Chicago (232, $62.7)
5. New York City (211, $86.6)
6. Atlanta (201, $38.7)
7. Houston (175, $62.9)
8. Sacramento (168, $19.1)
9. Detroit (151, $18.7)
10. Dallas Fort-Worth (148, $35.2)

Via Smart Planet

Lead photo by Thomas Pintaric