Federal officials from the U.S. General Services Administration announced a $2 billion investment for more than 150 construction projects to make federal buildings more eco-friendly.
The initiative, which calls for the use of cleaner construction materials known as “low-embodied carbon” (LEC) materials, is part of the Biden-Harris administration’s Investing in America agenda.
Funds from the Inflation Reduction Act will support projects across 39 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico.
The array of investments includes facade and window replacements, structural repairs, repaving projects, and seismic upgrades in buildings ranging from the historic Alexander Hamilton U.S. Custom House in New York City to the Henry M. Jackson Federal Building in Seattle, to land ports of entry across the northern and southern borders.
“The announcement from GSA shows that the federal government is leading by example on tackling the climate crisis by spurring demand for low-carbon manufacturing,” said John Podesta, senior advisor to the president for Clean Energy Innovation and Implementation. “This is exactly what President Biden’s Investing in America agenda is all about--boosting American innovation, building a clean energy economy, and creating good-paying jobs all across the country.”
Through the life of the projects, these investments are estimated to reduce up to 41,000 metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions and support over 6,000 jobs annually.
Asphalt, concrete, glass, and steel are some of the most carbon-intensive construction materials accounting for nearly half of all U.S. manufacturing greenhouse gas emissions and representing 98% of the construction materials purchased and funded by the government for its infrastructure investments.
GSA has identified over 150 federal government buildings projects that will prioritize the procurement of LEC materials. This includes:
- $384 million for asphalt.
- $767 million for concrete.
- $464 million for glass.
- $388 million for steel
By increasing demand for American-made LEC materials, the federal government believes these investments will strengthen the country’s industrial base, catalyze innovation, and stimulate job growth in industries that produce next-generation materials.
The projects are a step toward achieving President Biden’s federal sustainability goals, including a net zero emissions federal building portfolio by 2045 and net zero emissions procurement by 2050.