Green Building and Energy Reduction Standards for State Agencies (Washington)

From Open Energy Information

Last modified on February 12, 2015.

Rules Regulations Policies Program

Place Washington
Name Green Building and Energy Reduction Standards for State Agencies
Incentive Type Energy Standards for Public Buildings
Applicable Sector State Government
Eligible Technologies Comprehensive Measures/Whole Building, Biomass, CHP/Cogeneration, Daylighting, Geothermal Heat Pumps, Passive Solar Space Heat, Photovoltaics, Small Hydroelectric, Solar Space Heat, Solar Water Heat, Wind, Specific technologies not identified, Bio-gas
Active Incentive Yes
Implementing Sector State/Territory
Energy Category Energy Efficiency Incentive Programs, Renewable Energy Incentive Programs

Goal All state agencies, institutions of higher education, public schools, and commissions create a 10% reduction in energy purchases from fiscal year 2003 levels by September 2009.

Zero fossil-fuel greenhouse gas emission homes and buildings by 2031.

Requirement State construction projects must meet the LEED “Silver” Standard, or other green building standards (vary by project type and size).

Date added to DSIRE 2006-08-01
Last DSIRE Review 2013-06-11

References DSIRE[1]


On January 5, 2005, Washington’s governor signed Executive Order 05-01, directing state agencies to adopt green building practices in the construction of all new buildings and in major (over 60%) renovation of existing buildings. Beginning in 2005, building projects over 25,000 square feet must meet the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) “Silver” Standard, or be certified by a credible third party. The Department of General Administration (GA) is required to develop and implement a review process to make sure that these standards are applied in building projects of 5,000 to 25,000 square feet entering the pre-design or design phase when such projects apply for certification. The GA has to ensure the integration of green building and design practices into all new construction and renovation projects, and provide reimbursable training and support to affected project managers.

The Executive Order set the goal that - by September 2009 - state agencies must use all practicable and cost-effective means available, including energy efficiency and renewable energy measures, to reduce energy purchases by 10% from fiscal year 2003 levels. Procedures for monitoring, documentation, and reporting of the progress of these efforts are outlined in the order. In addition to energy efficiency in state buildings, this order also set requirements for fuel efficiency in state vehicle fleets and life-cycle impacts of paper use in state agencies. Executive Order 07-02 reaffirmed these goals.

Effective July 2005, SB 5509 set guidelines for major facility projects for buildings over 5,000 square feet. This law (RCW39.35D) requires all state agencies, institutions of higher education and other entities receiving state funding to meet at least the LEED “Silver” Standard in design, construction, and maintenance, to the extent appropriate.

Public K-12 school construction projects receiving state assistance must be built to the Washington Sustainable Schools Protocol (WSSP), or to LEED silver. The WSSP requires a 10% reduction in energy use beyond what is required by the Washington State Energy Code. The Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction will enforce these guidelines and provide relevant information to school districts. The GA will develop and issue guidelines for state agencies. The Department of Commerce (formerly the Department of Community, Trade, and Economic Development) adopted sustainable building standards in July 2008, and set a minimum level of sustainable performance for projects applying to the Housing Trust Fund (HTF). As part of this, Commerce developed The Evergreen Sustainable Development Standard.

In 2009, SB 5854 required the Department of Commerce to conduct a study on tax incentives to encourage green building in commercial, residential, and public buildings. It also divided the state into two climatic zones, set various insulation and efficiency standards for residential buildings, and required more inclusive data collection methods from utilities. Finally, it set the goal for zero fossil-fuel greenhouse gas emission homes and buildings by 2031.

Incentive Contact

Contact Name Stu Simpson
Department Washington Department of General Administration
Address 210 - 11th Avenue SW
Address 2 P.O. Box 41000
Place Olympia, Washington
Zip/Postal Code 98504-1012
Phone (360) 902-7199

Contact Name Patricia Jatczak
Department Washington Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction
Address Old Capitol Building 600 Washington St. S.E.
Address 2 P.O. Box 47200
Place Olympia, Washington
Zip/Postal Code 98504-7200
Phone (360) 725-4973
Phone 2 (360) 725-6000
Contact Name Greg Black
Department Washington Department of Commerce
Division Housing Trust Fund
Address 128 10th Avenue SW
Address 2 P.O. Box 42525
Place Olympia, Washington
Zip/Postal Code 98504-2525
Phone (360) 725-2916
Phone 2 (360) 725-4000

Authorities (Please contact the if there are any file problems.)

Authority 1: WA Executive Order 05-01
Date Enacted 01/2005

Authority 2: RCW § 39.35D.010 et seq.
Date Effective 07/2005

  • Incentive and policy data are reviewed and approved by the N.C. Solar Center's DSIRE project staff.[1]


  1. 1.0 1.1  "Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE)"