The purpose of this handbook is to furnish guidance for planning and conducting a highperformance building charrette, sometimes called a "greening charrette." The handbook answers typical questions such as, "What is a charrette?", "Why conduct a charrette?", "What topics should we cover?", "Whom should we invite?" and "What happens after the charrette?". Owners, design team leaders, site planners, state energy office staff, and others who believe a charrette will benefit their projects will find the handbook helpful.
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This report documents outcomes of the effort to rebuild Greensburg, Kansas, a town devastated by tornado damage in 2007. Key strategies include a sustainable comprehensive master plan, an ordinance specifying LEED Platinum ratings and 42% energy savings for city-owned buildings, focus on integrated design processes, and linkage of renewable and energy efficiency technologies with business development.
This paper presents a method for harnessing a discrete optimization algorithm to obtain significantly different, economically viable building designs that satisfy an energy efficiency goal. The method is demonstrated using NREL’s first-generation building analysis platform, Opt E-Plus, and two example problems. We discuss the information content of the results, and the computational effort required by the algorithm.
This paper describes how net-zero energy buildings will produce, during a typical year, enough renewable energy to offset the energy they consume from the grid.
This conference paper discusses four well-documented definitions of net-zero energy: net-zero site energy, net-zero source energy, net-zero energy costs, and net-zero energy emissions, along with pluses and minuses of each.
The new Research Support Facilities (RSF), currently in construction on the campus of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), is utilizing a wide variety of energy efficiency measures to reduce energy consumption by 50% over standard commercial buildings. But the goal to achieve a LEED Platinum rating didn’t override a focus on cost. The RSF’s construction costs are competitive with today’s less energy efficient commercial buildings, proof that energy efficiency doesn’t have to come at a premium.
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Building Technologies Program has set the aggressive goal of producing marketable net-zero energy buildings by 2025. This goal will require collaboration between the DOE laboratories and the building industry. We developed standard or reference energy models for the most common commercial buildings to serve as starting points for energy efficiency research. These models represent fairly realistic buildings and typical construction practices. Fifteen commercial building types and one multifamily residential building were determined by consensus between DOE, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, and represent approximately two-thirds of the commercial building stock.
This report overviews trends in the construction industry and the resulting impacts on energy consumption. The report provides a specific profile of the construction industry and patterns of energy use followed by sections providing product and market insights and information on policy efforts, such as taxes and regulations, which are intended to influence building energy use. Information on voluntary programs is also offered.
This paper describes efforts to develop a computerized tool that can rapidly execute and evaluate many building energy simulations. Building energy simulations are often used for trial-and-error evaluation of “what-if” options in buildingdesign—a limited search for an optimal solution, or “optimization.” Computerized searching has the potential to automate the input and output, evaluate many options, and perform enough simulations to account for the complex interactions among combinations of options.
This paper introduces a classification system for net-zero energy buildings (ZEB) based on the renewable sources a building uses.