The company is offering grants of up to $5,000 to defer the costs of seeking certification from the U.S. Green Building CouncilÂ’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design program.
In addition, the company is offering a $5,000 bonus to buildings that achieve the programÂ’s Â“GoldÂ” rating. Gold is the second highest of four LEED ratings that recognize environmental stewardship in building design and construction.
Â“By thinking Â‘greenÂ’ in building design and renovation, companies can save energy, conserve natural resources, help protect the environment and make their buildings better places to work,Â” said David G. DeCampli, president of PPL Electric Utilities.
Â“By seeking LEED recognition, companies can demonstrate their commitment to the environment and the communities they call home,Â” he said.
LEED-certified buildings typically use 25 to 30 percent less energy than their traditional counterparts. Savings can be even higher for buildings with LEEDÂ’s Gold and Platinum ratings. Among their features, LEED-certified buildings include energy-efficient lighting, heating and cooling systems; incorporate recycled materials in the building design; use less water; and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
The Plaza at PPL Center in Allentown was the first privately owned building in Pennsylvania and the eighth in the nation to receive the LEED Gold rating.
PPL Electric Utilities has pledged up to $150,000 in support for the LEED initiative. Companies in PPL Electric UtilitiesÂ’ service territory can receive up to $5,000 reimbursement in 2008 for LEED registration fees, and for design, construction and initial certification review fees.
The LEED initiative is part of PPL Electric UtilitiesÂ’ broader e-power effort to promote energy efficiency and give customers tools and information that can help them reduce their electric bills.
PPL Electric Utilities also recently announced $250,000 in support for a small-business energy efficiency rebate program. That program, run by the Sustainable Energy Fund Â— a private, nonprofit organization based in Pennsylvania Â— provides rebates to small businesses that upgrade to energy-efficient lighting.
The company also offers its Energy Analyzer online. The Energy Analyzer gives daily electricity usage information to all customers and provides energy-saving tips to residential and small business customers.