Phoenix is among the top 10 cities with the most Energy Star certified buildings in 2012, the EPA said.
The Valley broke into the top 10 list for the first time, and is the only Arizona city in the top 25. California leads with six cities on the top 25 list, more than any other state.
Nationally, more than 20,000 Energy Star certified buildings across America helped save more than $2.7 billion in annual utility bills while preventing greenhouse gas emissions equal to emissions from the annual electricity use of more than 2 million homes in 2012, the EPA said.
Also on this list is Washington, D.C., landing in second place with 462 buildings. Chicago has risen through the rankings each year, starting in sixth place in 2008 and increasing the number of buildings certified by an average of 32 percent each year.
Commercial buildings that earn EPA's Energy Star must perform in the top 25 percent of similar buildings nationwide, as verified by a professional engineer or a registered architect.
Energy Star certified buildings use an average of 35 percent less energy and are responsible for 35 percent fewer greenhouse gas emissions than average buildings, the EPA said. Fifteen types of commercial buildings can earn the Energy Star, including office buildings, K-12 schools, and retail stores.
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