California named second most energy-efficient state in the United States

More Americans than ever are turning toward home builders and real estate development companies requesting the presence of sustainable technology within their homes. Energy-efficient solutions such as light emitting diodes (LEDs), radiant heating and insulation with high R-values are beginning to be incorporated into everyday construction projects.

Homebuyers considering buying real estate in Orange County may want to check out the properties with energy-efficient technology incorporated into the design. The decrease in operational costs could save a new owner significant sums of money in everyday living expenses.

Green homes make up larger portion of the residential market
Eco Homes Magazine reports that green homes made up 17 percent of all new residential construction in 2011. By 2016, green homes are expected to encompass between 29 and 38 percent of the market.

The increase from $17 billion in 2011 to between $87 billion and $114 billion in 2016 is based on a five-year forecast of the residential construction market, the news source reports.

"This study demonstrates phenomenal growth in green building and indicates that we can expect even larger increases in the coming years," NAHB chairman Barry Rutenberg told the news source. "In a sample of NAHB builder and remodeler members, nearly 90 percent reported building green at some level. This is a powerful testament to the importance of green home building - and transforms the way we think of homes overall."

Some housing experts are predicting an even larger jump in green construction rates. Eco Homes Magazine reports that a study by McGraw-Hill Construction claimed that 34 percent of remodelers expect a majority of their work to be comprised of sustainable projects by 2016 – a 150 percent increase over 2011 levels.

California takes second place for green
The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy’s (ACEEE) 2012 State Energy Efficiency Scorecard has named California as the second greenest state in the United States. The ACEEE claims that California has been a leader with utility-sector customer energy efficiency programs that date back to the 1970s.

California's electricity use per capita has essentially remained the same over the past 30 years thanks to various state-mandated programs to regulate residential energy use. California utilities are currently operating within a 2010 to 2012 program period, which means the state should save approximately 7,000GWh in electricity and 150MMTh in natural gas.