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In Visit to Kansas City, GSA Administrator Touts Benefits of Inflation Reduction Act for Workers and Innovators

Law boosts GSA efforts to help achieve Biden-Harris administration goal of net zero emissions from federal operations by 2050

KANSAS CITY, MO. — Today, Administrator Robin Carnahan of the U.S. General Services Administration joined Congressman Emanuel Cleaver, II (MO-5), Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas and Alise Martiny, Business Manager, Kansas City Building and Construction Trades Council in Kansas City, Missouri, to promote the Inflation Reduction Act and the Biden-Harris Administration's efforts to create clean energy jobs, catalyze American innovation, and achieve net-zero emissions from federal operations by 2050.

The Inflation Reduction Act provides a boost to GSA's efforts to leverage the federal government's buying power and use its real estate portfolio to reduce emissions and accelerate the adoption of emerging technologies. The law provides $2.15 billion for low-embodied carbon materials in construction projects; $975 million to support emerging and sustainable technologies; and $250 million for measures to convert federal facilities into High Performance Green Buildings.

In Kansas City, Administrator Carnahan met with students at the University of Missouri-Kansas City's Renewable Energy Lab, where she highlighted GSA's efforts to use federal facilities as proving grounds for clean energy technologies.

“The Inflation Reduction Act will help supercharge GSA's efforts to use the federal government's buying power and real estate footprint to reduce harmful emissions and spur American innovation,” said GSA Administrator Robin Carnahan. “Through initiatives like our Green Proving Ground program, GSA has demonstrated how the federal government can partner with the private sector to catalyze clean energy innovation and encourage the broader adoption of clean energy technologies. The technologies these students are learning about are a prime example of how tackling the climate crisis can be an opportunity to reduce energy costs and create next-generation clean energy jobs.”

Earlier this week, GSA and the U.S. Department of Energy announced that they are seeking input from the private sector on technologies that help reduce greenhouse gas emissions in commercial buildings. Technologies will be considered for either GSA's Green Proving Ground program (for federally-owned facilities) or voluntary partnership programs facilitated by DOE (for privately-owned facilities).

GSA's Green Proving Ground Program has evaluated hundreds of technologies in GSA buildings, including the Bannister Federal Facility and the Robert J. Dole Courthouse in the Kansas City area. For example, GSA's 2012 evaluation of condensing boilers, which capture the heat that traditional boilers lose through steam, helped condensing boilers become standard both in GSA and the commercial building sector. The latest installation of condensing boilers at the Bannister Federal Facility raised equipment efficiency from 65% to 94%. This increase in efficiency translates to an estimated $41,000 in annual savings.

Other recent sustainability initiatives GSA has completed in the Kansas City area include:

  • Working customer agencies, including the National Archives and Records and Administration and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, to replace thousands of commercial lighting fixtures with LED lighting, which can reduce energy consumption by up to 90%.
  • A major modernization of the Banister Federal Facility, which included installing energy efficient equipment. The project was also able to recycle over 2,100 tons of material, the equivalent to 71% of the construction waste being diverted from landfill.
  • In addition, GSA is underway with a more than $50 million repair and alteration project for the Whittaker Courthouse, which will reduce emissions through increasing operational efficiency, optimizing daylight, and other features.
  • As of July, as of July, GSA's Heartland Region had reduced energy usage by 7.3% over the prior 36 month period.

In addition to creating jobs through construction and renovation projects, GSA's efforts through the Inflation Reduction Act will also spur demand for low-embodied carbon construction materials manufactured in the U.S. In support of the Biden-Harris Administration's Federal Buy Clean Initiative to spur markets for low-carbon products made in America, GSA recently released a Request For Information to learn more about the availability of domestically manufactured, locally sourced low-carbon construction materials. For the first time, the entire federal government will prioritize the use of American-made, lower-carbon construction materials in federal procurement and federally funded projects.

For more information on the Inflation Reduction Act's impact on Missouri [PDF] and Kansas [PDF], see the White House fact sheets, highlighting how the law tackles the climate crisis in states across the country and how families and communities can benefit from a clean energy future.