Federal Leadership in Environmental, Energy and Economic Performance - EXECUTIVE ORDER 13514

Demonstrating a commitment to lead by example, on October 5, 2009, President Obama signed Executive Order 13514, that set sustainability goals for Federal agencies and focuses on making improvements in their environmental, energy and economic performance.  The Executive Order required Federal agencies to submit a 2020 greenhouse gas pollution reduction target within 90 days, and to increase energy efficiency, reduce fleet petroleum consumption, conserve water, reduce waste, support sustainable communities, and leverage Federal purchasing power to promote environmentally-responsible products and technologies.

The Federal Government occupies nearly 500,000 buildings, operates more than 600,000 vehicles, employs more than 1.8 million civilians, and purchases more than $500 billion per year in goods and services.  The Executive Order builds on and expands the energy reduction and environmental requirements of Executive Order 13423 by making reductions of greenhouse gas emissions a priority of the Federal government, and by requiring agencies to develop sustainability plans focused on cost-effective projects and programs.  Projected benefits to the taxpayer include substantial energy savings and avoided costs from improved efficiency.

The Executive Order requires agencies to measure, manage, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions toward agency-defined targets.  It describes a process by which agency goals will be set and reported to the President by the Chair of CEQ.  The Executive Order requires agencies to meet a number of energy, water, and waste reduction targets, including:

  • 30% reduction in vehicle fleet petroleum use by 2020;
  • 26% improvement in water efficiency by 2020;
  • 50% recycling and waste diversion by 2015;
  • 95% of all applicable contracts will meet sustainability requirements;
  • Implementation of the 2030 net-zero-energy building requirement;
  • Implementation of the stormwater provisions of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, section 438, and;
  • Development of guidance for sustainable Federal building locations in alignment with the Livability Principles put forward by the Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Department of Transportation, and the Environmental Protection Agency.

Meeting these goals will reduce costs, reduce air and water pollution, and drive investments in local, clean energy jobs.

Implementation of the Executive Order will focus on integrating achievement of sustainability goals with agency mission and strategic planning to optimize performance and minimize implementation costs.  Implementation will be managed through the previously-established Office of the Federal Environmental Executive, working in close partnership with OMB, CEQ and the agencies.

Under Executive Order 13514, Federal agencies were also asked to develop, implement and annually update a plan that prioritizes actions based on a positive return on investment for the American taxpayer and to meet energy, water, and waste reduction targets. Visit the Sustainability Plans webpage to view individual agency Strategic Sustainability Performance Plans.

On April 19, 2011, 24 Federal agencies and departments released, for the first time, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Sustainability and Energy Scorecards. These scorecards enable agencies to target and track the best opportunities to lead by example in clean energy; and to meet a range of energy, water, pollution, and waste reduction targets. On June 15, 2012, Federal agencies released their second annual scorecard.  On May 31, 2013 agencies released their third annual scorecard.  Visit the OMB sustainability and energy scorecards page to view individual agency scorecard results.

In January 2010, President Obama announced Federal Government-wide GHG emissions reduction targets for 2020 from 2008 levels of  28 percent of direct emissions, such as those from fuels and building energy use, and of 13 percent of indirect emissions, such as those from employee commuting and business travel. Reducing and reporting GHG pollution, as called for in Executive Order 13514 on Federal Sustainability, will ensure that the Federal Government leads by example in building our nation’s clean energy economy. 
Learn more about individual Federal department and agency inventories, accounting guidance, and the Federal greenhouse gas reduction goals for 2020 by visiting the Federal Greenhouse Gas Accounting and Inventories webpage.


Executive Order 13514

Testimony of Chair Nancy Sutley Before the U.S. Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, Subcommittee on Federal Financial Management, Government Information, Federal Services, and International Security

Read how Federal agencies are improving efficiency, reducing pollution, and saving taxpayer dollars by achieving the sustainability goals of Executive Order 13514.

For more information on the Office of the Federal Environmental Executive, please visit www.ofee.gov.