Salt Lake City

Salt Lake City and Salt Lake Chamber partner on the Third Annual Skyline Challenge to accelerate commercial building energy efficiency

As part of her mission to improve air quality, reduce carbon emissions, and form strong partnerships with the business community, Mayor Jackie Biskupski is pleased to launch the Third Annual Skyline Challenge—this year with the Salt Lake Chamber joining the roster of partners.

The annual Skyline Challenge is a voluntary program to accelerate investment in energy efficiency from large commercial buildings and raise public awareness of building energy performance, while creating jobs and fostering a stronger local economy.

According to the Utah Geological Survey, 68 percent of all electricity consumption and 41 percent of all natural gas consumption in Utah is represented by the commercial building sector alone.

Unlike transportation, which is quickly becoming cleaner, nearly two-thirds of our current building stock will still be standing 30 years from now. This makes energy efficiency improvements for existing buildings critical for improving air quality.

Since 2015, Salt Lake City has used the Skyline Challenge to motivate and recognize commercial building owners who are leading the industry with their commitment to air quality and energy efficiency.

“We continue to promote energy efficiency among our city’s commercial building owners and tenants because the impacts are so tangible,” Mayor Biskupski said. Bolstering the efficiency of our largest buildings improves the air we breathe and puts money back into our pockets. It’s also key to achieving Salt Lake City’s ambitious climate goals over the coming years.”

Businesses that join the Challenge are encouraged to evaluate their building’s energy use, set energy savings goals, and conduct energy-saving improvement projects to meet or exceed those goals. This results in significant air quality and carbon reduction benefits, while also lowering energy costs for buildings.

Last year’s winners include Wingcrest, 170 S. Main, Intermountain Healthcare, and Rocky Mountain Power.

As part of their focus on how the business community can take actionable measures to improve air quality, the Salt Lake Chamber this year is joining forces with Salt Lake City to expand and promote involvement in the Skyline Challenge among Chamber members.

“The business community remains committed to improving Utah’s air quality,” said Lane Beattie, president and CEO of the Salt Lake Chamber. “This partnership with Salt Lake City will help provide resources, tools and networking opportunities for businesses to be successful in their ongoing efforts to improve air quality and enhance the energy efficiency of their buildings.”

The Salt Lake Chamber also sponsors several other clean air programs, including the annual Clear the Air Challenge—which has saved more than 3,600 tons of emissions since its inception—and the new Clean Air Champions program, aimed at inversion mitigation strategies for businesses.

“With its participation in the Skyline Challenge, the Salt Lake Chamber brings with it an engaged group of Utah organizations that are already acting on clean air efforts,” Mayor Biskupski said. “We look forward to seeing what they can do as they direct their efforts to energy efficiency in buildings.”

The Skyline Challenge culminates in an annual awards event in July, during which the Mayor and the Chamber will recognize those buildings which have cut energy usage the most. Buildings outside of Salt Lake City, but located along the Wasatch Front, are encouraged to participate in the expanded Challenge this year.

In addition to the Salt Lake Chamber, other sponsoring partners of the Skyline Challenge include Rocky Mountain Power, Questar Gas, the Building Owners and Managers Association of Utah, EPA’s EnergyStar program, Utah Clean Energy, and the Utah Chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council.

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