WEC advocated first-in-the-nation legislation that required state buildings, schools, and universities to be built and certified as high performance green buildings (though schools can meet a local rating system instead of LEED). These green buildings save energy, conserve water, minimize waste, and improve indoor air quality – all at a minimal increase in construction costs but saving $50 per square foot over a 20 year period. Using LEED Silver Certification in buildings across Washington has increased the market share of these construction projects by over four fold and helped establish sustainable building practices in the industry.