In April 2005, Iowa governor Tom Vilsack issued Executive Order No. 41, directing state agencies to reduce electricity and natural gas use in buildings by an average of 15% by 2010, relative to their energy use in 2000. In February 2008, Governor Chet Culver issued Executive Order No. 6 (EO 6), rescinding the earlier order and providing for a further 15% reduction in the use of natural gas, fuel oil, electricity, and water in state buildings within 5 years. The new goal will also take into account growth in the state workforce and changes in building operations. A joint committee called the Energy Excellent Buildings Task Force and composed of representatives from various state agencies will provide guidance towards achieving this goal. This program update is part of Culver's broader Green Government Initiative, which also created a Sustainable Materials Task Force and a Biofuels Task Force.
In compliance with EO 6, a Green Government Master Plan has been developed outlining the results of a state agency survey on energy use and offering recommendations for improvement. Regarding building energy use, the Master Plan recommends that all agencies should: complete energy audits during the next year; limit the use of personal appliances (e.g., coffee makers, microwaves, etc.) in favor of centralized facilities; and invest in information systems that allow computers to be turned off at night and on weekends. The plan also recommends that the Green Government Steering Committee develop a report for the Governor with suggestions for improving data collection beginning in Fiscal Year 2010.
In December 2009, Governor Culver also issued Executive Order 20, which sets out measures for improving overall government efficiency. The order includes a measure requiring all state buildings to conduct energy efficiency retrofits.
The Iowa Department of Administrative Services (DAS), which operates the Capitol Complex, has adopted an extensive energy management strategy which includes revised building temperature settings and limitations on off-hour use of general lighting. The DAS is also working on implementing additional recommendations regarding energy efficient lighting equipment, the use of outside air to meet cooling needs, automation of heating and cooling systems, and motion detector use in common areas. Click here for more information on the DAS energy management strategies.