Jack Hogan//May 26, 2023
//May 26, 2023
A new conservation goal from Maryland Gov. Wes Moore to decrease energy usage in state-owned buildings 20% by 2031 is expected to lower the state’s energy costs by up to $20 million per year.
The previous goal, which former Republican Gov. Larry Hogan established in an executive order in 2019, was to reduce energy consumption in state-owned buildings by 10% over the course of a decade.
“This administration is taking unprecedented action to address climate change and our state agencies will lead the way,” Moore said in a statement. “Achieving more ambitious greenhouse gas emissions reduction goals is a means to promote the health and wellness of Marylanders not only for tomorrow, but for generations to come.”
Energy usage in the state’s buildings declined 12% between 2018 and 2022, according to the Maryland Department of General Services.
Buildings that comply with the new energy conservation goal are expected to lower the state’s energy costs by between $15 million and $20 million per year, according to the Department of General Services.
The roughly 8,000 state-owned facilities in Maryland vary in size, ranging from small, state park campground structures to large government office complexes in Annapolis and Baltimore; from the Old Treasury Building on State Circle built in 1736 to facilities currently under construction.
Moore’s executive order contributes to a state program for new buildings and major renovations that aims to reach net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2045.
Moore has also directed the Department of General Services to identify contracts that contribute to energy savings at state-owned facilities, and at buildings that have the highest energy use per square foot and the greatest greenhouse gas emissions, according to the governor’s office.
The Department of General Services will be required to conduct annual audits of energy usage in state buildings and facilities that will note best practices and additional cost-saving measures for energy conservation, according to the governor’s office. Moore has also directed the department to maintain a database of the state’s utility records.t