The United Nation's Building renovation will cost $1.9 billion. The result will be a building that is pretty much the same as the current one. A big reason for the run up in in cost is an effort to make the building green. The renovation will improve the efficiency of the building by 30%.
The article does not say how much energy the building consumes; however, I find it safe to guess that the $1.9 billion dollar renovation effort will consume far more energy than the efficiency gains.
Sadly, I fear that the UN renovation is symbolic of the international left's effort to stop global warming through government funding. Resources consumed by the left's stab at controlling nature is likely to be equal if not greater than the resource savings. The economic costs will dwarf the economic benefits. Finally, the primary beneficiaries of all the hot air blown by the efforts will be the elite core. As with the majority of efforts dreamed up by the left, the elitist will reap the rewards from the effort and the people will languish.
I like the UN. I wish that we had opted for the lower cost effort that would have involved building a new UN building. Moving the Bureaucrats, then renovating the old UN building. The smart path would have given us a second building for the massive investment. The UN may not be popular, but it is worth the effort to keep as much of it in the US as is possible.
Back to alternative energy: It seems to me that Natural Capitalism by the Rocky Mountain Institute is a better approach to the energy problem. Natural Capitalism wishes to make resource consumption a bigger part of the cost equation. With the cost of resources taken into account properly, the market will find ways to adjust to the new equation.