WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is recognizing 30 Sunrise Senior Living communities as the first senior care facilities to earn EPA’s Energy Star for superior energy performance. The communities have upgraded to more efficient lighting and improved operations of heating and hot water systems to improve their energy efficiency and save money while contributing to cleaner air and protecting people’s health.
The 30 communities, located in eight states across the country, join more than 12,600 Energy Star certified commercial buildings that are performing in the top 25 percent for energy efficiency when compared to similar buildings nationwide. The certified buildings typically use 35 percent less energy and produce 35 percent fewer greenhouse gas emissions. Sunrise Senior Living owns 277 senior care communities in the United States, of which 11 percent are now Energy Star certified.
Nursing homes, assisted living communities, and certain types of continuing care retirement communities are now eligible to earn EPA’s Energy Star, in addition to 14 other commercial building types, such as schools and retail stores. There are more than 38,000 residential care communities in the United States and together they spend more than $1.5 billion annually on energy use. If each community reduced its energy use by just 10 percent, Americans could save more than $150 million per year.
Energy Star was started by EPA in 1992 as a market-based partnership to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through energy efficiency. Today the Energy Star label can be found on more than 60 different kinds of products, as well as new homes and commercial and industrial buildings that meet strict energy-efficiency specifications set by EPA. Last year alone, Americans, with the help of Energy Star, saved approximately $18 billion on their energy bills while preventing greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to the annual emissions of 33 million vehicles.