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2020 Getting to Zero Buildings List

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NBI's 2020 list of pioneering zero energy (ZE) projects represents the latest growth in a rapidly expanding market. ZE buildings are extremely energy efficient, with a median site EUI of only 23 kBtu/sf/yr*, and consume only as much energy as is produced onsite with clean, renewable energy resources such as solar.


As policies and programs advance, designers and building owners continue to seek ever-higher levels of performance and environmental stewardship. In this list you will find ZE projects with ZE performance that has been certified by a third party or verified by NBI.


These trailblazing buildings, portfolios, districts, and campuses have demonstrated that getting to zero energy design and operation is feasible in every climate, market sector, size, and building type across the U.S. and Canada.


To date, New Buildings Institute is tracking 136 certified or verified and 547 emerging zero energy projects across North America. Since the last publication of this list in 2019, the total number of ZE projects has grown by 15% and the number of certified or verified ZE projects has grown by 68%.


Many projects joining the list are part of a portfolio of energy efficient buildings with dedicated shared renewable energy resources such as large-scale offsite solar installations. The number of designers delivering ZE projects has grown as well, indicating newcomers to the zero energy design market.


This list includes all Certified and Verified ZE projects known to NBI as of September 2020. There are over 500 additional ZE projects in the Emerging category (projects that have not yet achieved ZE, or for which NBI does not have data to verify ZE performance) that are not listed here.


You can access a live, comprehensive map and list of all ZE Certified, Verified, and Emerging projects across North America and explore trends in ZE buildings with interactive charts and customizable graphics.

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