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Legal Requirements

Hot Annotations

Executive Order 13693:
Planning for Federal Sustainability in the Next Decade

Click through an annotated Executive Order 13693 to learn more about federal sustainability plans over the next decade. Click on language throughout the document to reveal strategies, definitions, and links to the best resources from around the web.

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Executive Order 13653:
Preparing the United States for the Impacts of Climate Change

Click through an annotated Executive Order 13653 to learn more about the impacts of climate change on environmental conditions. Click on language throughout the document to reveal strategies, definitions, and links to the best resources from around the web.

Explore Annotated EO 13653

Executive Order 13514:
Federal Leadership in Environmental, Energy, and Economic Performance (Archived)

Executive Order 13514 was replaced by Executive Order 13693. Click on language throughout the document to reveal strategies, definitions, and links.

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Laws

Energy Policy Act of 1992 (EPAct 1992)
The Energy Policy Act of 1992 established several energy management goals, as well as requirements for water and fleet fuel management. Many of the energy management requirements have been updated in EISA, EPAct 2005 and subsequent Executive Orders, but requirements for low-flow water fixtures and alternative fuel vehicles still apply. View Act
Energy Independence and Security Act (EISA)
The stated purpose of the act is "to move the United States toward greater energy independence and security, to increase the production of clean renewable fuels, to protect consumers, to increase the efficiency of products, buildings, and vehicles, to promote research on and deploy greenhouse gas capture and storage options, and to improve the energy performance of the Federal Government, and for other purposes." Search for excerpts relevant to Federal buildings here or view full text.
Energy Policy Act of 2005 (EPAct 2005)
The Energy Policy Act of 2005 established a number of energy management goals for Federal facilities and fleets. Many of the energy management requirements of EPAct have been updated in EISA and subsequent Executive Orders. Search for excerpts relevant to Federal buildings here or view full text.

Executive Orders

Executive Order 13423
E.O. 13423, Strengthening Federal Environmental, Energy, and Transportation Management, was signed on January 24, 2007, setting more challenging goals than the Energy Policy Act of 2005 (EPAct 2005) and superseding previous Executive Orders. View Order
Executive Order 13514
E.O. 13514, Federal Leadership in Environmental, Energy, and Economic Performance, was signed on October 5, 2009. It expanded upon the energy reduction and environmental performance requirements of E.O. 13423. View Order

Guiding Principles

Several Executive Orders and legislative mandates direct Federal Agencies to achieve specific High Performance and Sustainable Building (HPSB) goals. Most recently, EO 13693 requires that, where life-cycle cost-effective, new construction and major renovations comply with a set of six Guiding Principles:

  1. 1. Integrated Design Principles
  2. 2. Optimize Energy Performance
  3. 3. Protect and Conserve Water
  4. 4. Enhance Indoor Environmental Quality
  5. 5. Reduce the Environmental Impact of Materials
  6. 6. Assess and Consider Climate Change Risks

The Guiding Principles were originally established in 2006 in a Memorandum of Understanding signed by Federal agencies at the White House, updated in 2008 based on recommendations of the Interagency Sustainability Working Group, and updated again in 2016 in response to EO 13693. The White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) hosts the latest two documents:   Guiding Principles for Sustainable Federal Buildings and Associated Instructions and Determining Compliance with the Guiding Principles for Sustainable Federal Buildings. Note that the exact compliance criteria vary between new construction versus major renovation projects. In addition, leases are no longer included in reporting compliance, though “agencies should strive to incorporate as many of the Guiding Principles as possible in lease actions.”


For additional guidance on meeting the Guiding Principles, search SFTool or see the Whole Building Design Guide (WBDG).

Regulations

Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR)
The Federal Acquisition Regulation governs how all government agencies are to make procurements. Specifically, Subchapter D Part 23 dictates how the sustainability aspect of those purchases must be made. FAR - Part 23
Energy Efficiency Standard for Federal Buildings

10 CFR Part 433 is the energy efficiency standard for federal commercial and multi-family high-rise residential buildings and Part 435 is the standard for low-rise residential buildings. A final rule passed on July 9, 2013 updates the baseline Federal commercial standard to ASHRAE Std 90.1-2010. View Rule

Federal Energy Management and Planning

10 CFR Part 436 establishes the rules and objectives for Federal energy management and planning programs to promote life cycle cost effective investments in building energy systems, building water systems and energy and water conservation measures for Federal buildings. View Rule

Did You Know?

LED costs are declining rapidly. LED package prices declined to approximately $1/klm by 2016, resulting in dramatically reduced LED lamp and luminaire prices.

Source: LED Basics, U.S. Department of Energy


Case Study

Occupant Comfort

Comfortable workers are more likely to be productive and engaged with their work than those who struggle to work in spaces that create barriers and stresses. With an ever increasing number of environmental issues to be mindful of when designing spaces, GSA is developing practices that support both sustainability and worker comfort.

View Case Study