USGBC names top 10 states for LEED projects

March 3, 2011
States were ranked based on their per-capita square footage of green buildings.

The state that tops the United States Green Building Council's (USGBC) list of most-active in terms of Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) buildings in 2010 is not a state at all. By the USGBC's metric, the District of Columbia was more than twice as active in LEED projects as the second-place finisher.

The USGBC used 2010 Census data as a starting point, then determined the square-footage of green buildings, per capita, in each state. By that measurement the nation's capital comes in at 25.15 square feet per capita. The second-place finisher, Nevada, has 10.92 square feet.

Scott Horst, who is the USGBC's senior vice president for LEED, explained the council's approach. "Using per capita, versus the more-traditional numbers of projects or pure square footage, is a reminder to all of us that the people who live and work, learn and play in buildings should be what we care about most," he said. "2010 was a difficult year for most of the building industry, but in many cases the hunger for sustainable development kept the markets moving."

USGBC pointed out that of the newly certified projects in 2010, the most common project type was commercial office and the most common owner type was for-profit organization. Chicago and Washington DC were the most-represented cities.

Here is the top 10 list with square-footage metric for each.

  1. District of Columbia - 25.15
  2. Nevada - 10.92
  3. New Mexico - 6.35
  4. New Hampshire - 4.49
  5. Oregon - 4.07
  6. South Carolina - 3.19
  7. Washington - 3.16
  8. Illinois - 3.09
  9. Arkansas - 2.9
  10. Colorado - 2.85
  11. Minnesota - 2.77

The full list of LEED-certified projects, organized as an Excel spreadsheet, can be found here.

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