Friday, April 11, 2008 Lee Wetherington Homes joins ENERGY STAR® Campaign to ‘Change a Light, Change the World’

SARASOTA, FL—Lee Wetherington Homes, an official ENERGY STAR® partner, announced today its participation in the national ENERGY STAR® "Change a Light, Change the World" campaign, a growing community of businesses, schools, utilities, non-profit organizations and individuals who have made a firm commitment to help change the world, one light at a time.

As part of this national initiative, Lee Wetherington Homes asks people for a pledge to replace at least one standard bulb or fixture at home with one that has earned the government's ENERGY STAR® label before Earth Day, April 22. "Programs like these are an important step in saving energy and joining the fight against global climate change," says Lee Wetherington, company president.

It takes just a few new light bulbs and a couple clicks of the mouse to join the local builder--named “America’s Best Builder” by Builder magazine and the National Association of Home Builders--in reducing man’s carbon footprint by saving precious resources. The company’s goal is to get at least 150 people to make the pledge by visiting its home page at www.lwhomes.com and clicking on the banner that says, "Take the ENERGY STAR 'Change a Light' Pledge.”

In keeping with its ongoing commitment to environmentally aware building, Lee Wetherington Homes strives to make everyday Earth Day by increasing community awareness about energy conservation. Since March 2005, the award-winning custom home builder has employed Florida Green Building Coalition Green Home Standards for every home it has constructed. Last summer, Lee Wetherington Homes reached a milestone when it completed its 250th green home.

“Lee Wetherington Companies was the first builder to go Green across-the-board in Sarasota and Manatee Counties,” says Drew Smith, LEED, AP, CHIEQP. Smith is the president of Two Trails, Inc., an outside certifying agent that evaluates buildings for their compliance with Green Building standards. He says that although a number of builders observe Green Building standards in select homes, few have matched Wetherington’s commitment to include every home his company builds. “His decision is important because Green Certified Homes are energy-efficient, healthy, resource-conserving, sustainable, and less costly to operate.”

The Green Home leader also has received the ENERGY STAR rating in every home the company has constructed since November 1, 2007, according to Wetherington.

“Lee Wetherington Companies is the area’s first builder that’s made the commitment to provide only homes that have earned the ENERGY STAR,” says Salena Wilson. She is Energy Rater Division Manager for Florida-based Calcs-Plus, which evaluates homes for Energy Star specifications. “ENERGY STAR-qualified homes consume 15 percent less energy than a code-only home,” she says. In fact, some of the Wetherington homes exceed ENERGY STAR standards, reducing energy usage by more than 20 percent, Wetherington says.

"Like an increasing number of organizations, we want to do our part to reduce our country's greenhouse gas emissions and play a role in fighting climate change," Wetherington says. "We are proud to spread the word about the difference individuals in our community can make by acting together to take energy-saving steps at home."

Visit www.lwhomes.com and join America’s Best Builder in its efforts to preserve natural resources for future generations.

About ENERGY STAR®
ENERGY STAR was introduced by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in 1992 as a voluntary, market-based partnership to reduce air pollution through increased energy efficiency. Today, with assistance from the U.S. Department of Energy, the ENERGY STAR program offers businesses and consumers energy-efficient solutions to save energy and money, and help fight global climate change. More than 8,000 organizations have become ENERGY STAR partners and are committed to improving the energy efficiency of products, homes and businesses. For more information about ENERGY STAR, visit www.energystar.gov or call toll-free 1-888-STAR-YES (1-888-782-7937).

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