On average, commercial buildings account for 40% of greenhouse gas emissions. Energy Secretary Steven Chu has described improving energy efficiency in buildings as not just low-hanging fruit, but "it is fruit that is lying on the ground." Several states and local governments have already mandated increased energy efficiency in public and private buildings, and proposed federal climate change legislation appears likely to include comparable provisions. This program will discuss the status of federal, state and local legislation addressing energy efficiency in buildings and describe options to improve Energy Star ratings. The panel will explore contracting models for building retrofits, including a case study of Holland & Knight's recent work negotiating an energy performance contract for the Empire State Building.