By Dan Shapley
CB Richard Ellis Group Inc., which manages 1.7 billion square feet of commercial real estate, will go carbon neutral by 2010. It's the first company of its kind and size to take the step, and the move highlights the huge role that buildings play in the carbon footprint of America. In the 1990s, 48 percent of the increase in U.S. carbon emissions was attributed to increasing emissions from the building sector, according to the Department of Energy. Ellis will make the milestone by boosting the energy efficiency of its buildings with a variety of upgrades, and by buying carbon offsets to make up for any remaining emissions. The moves it makes to retrofit older buildings may not be as sexy as new certified green buildings that come on the market, but upgrading existing buildings is among the most green things they -- or any homeowner for that matter -- can do, according to a story in the May 31 Los Angeles Times.