Green Building

We’re making County buildings greener for a safer, more sustainable future.

Buildings produce more greenhouse gases than many people realize — about a third of the total greenhouse gas emissions for Alameda County operations.

We’re working across all departments to make County buildings more sustainable — more sustainably built and more sustainable to run.

Here’s how we did it, and how we’re doing it better, by the numbers:

  • 11 County buildings have achieved at least LEED® Silver designation, with six buildings achieving a Gold rating or better
  • The County produces about 16% of the electricity it needs to run its buildings through onsite solar generation
  • County buildings are powered with 100% carbon-free energy, 75% from renewable sources, provided by East Bay Community Energy, the public power agency launched by the County in 2018

Green Building at GSA: Learn more about our green building initiatives.

Energy Initiatives: We’re developing and implementing cutting-edge energy solutions to move County buildings toward a carbon-zero future.

The Juvenile Justice Center is the first U.S. Green Building Council LEED® Gold rated facility of its kind. When it opened, green features included:


  • Energy-efficient design that maximizes natural light to reduce energy use
  • An 850 kW rooftop solar panel that provides more than 60% of the building’s electricity needs
  • Water-wise landscaping that reduces site water consumption by more than 50% and saves over five million gallons of water annually
  • A full green cleaning program including green cleaners, microfiber cloths and mops, and entryway matting
  • Recycling of 93% of construction waste
  • Environmentally preferable carpet, paint and furniture

Modern libraries provide not only books, but also public access to the internet, community gathering spaces, and educational opportunities for youth and adults alike. The Castro Valley Library provides all of this in a green facility that is U.S. Green Building Council LEED® Gold rated. When the library opened, green features included:


  • A 277-kilowatt solar energy installation provides 100% of the library’s electricity needs
  • A raised floor system to maximize the energy efficiency of heating and cooling systems
  • Energy-efficient lighting and mechanical equipment
  • Creek restoration, including a pedestrian bridge made from converted railroad flat car
  • Bay-friendly landscaping
  • Paints and sealants that emit low or no volatile organic compounds (VOCs), resulting in improved air quality

The U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED® green building program is the preeminent program for the design, construction, maintenance and operations of high-performance green buildings. Learn more at