This Fact Sheet provides an overview of the Better Buildings Workforce Guidelines project. The Department of Energy (DOE) and the National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS) are working with industry stakeholders to develop voluntary national guidelines that will improve the quality and consistency of commercial building workforce training and certification programs for five key energy-related jobs.
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The lack of empirical data on the energy performance of buildings is a key barrier to accelerating the energy efficiency retrofit market. The DOE’s Buildings Performance Database (BPD) helps address this gap by allowing users to perform exploratory analyses on an anonymous dataset of hundreds of thousands of commercial and residential buildings. These analyses enable market actors to assess energy efficiency opportunities, forecast project performance, and quantify performance risk using empirical building data. In this paper, we describe the process of collecting and preparing data for the database, and present a peer-group analysis tool that allows users to analyze building performance for narrowly defined subsets of the database, or peer groups. We use this tool to explore a case study of a multifamily portfolio owner comparing his buildings’ performance to the peer group of multifamily buildings in the local metro area. We also present a performance comparison tool that uses statistical methods to estimate the expected change in energy performance due to changes in building-component technologies. We demonstrate a low-effort retrofit analysis, providing a probabilistic estimate of energy savings for a sample building retrofit. The key advantages of this approach compared to conventional engineering models are that it provides probabilistic risk analysis based on actual
measured data and can significantly reduce transaction costs for predicting savings across a portfolio.
The Smart Monitoring and Diagnostic System (SMDS) is a low-cost technology that helps building owners and managers keep rooftop air conditioner and heat pump units (RTUs) operating properly at peak efficiency. The SMDS technology has the potential to significantly benefit small commercial buildings, which predominately use RTUs for space conditioning. Through the Better Buildings Alliance, a field demonstration was conducted at four sites using two SMDS prototypes. This case study provides a summary of the field demonstration results.
The full report is available at: https://buildingdata.energy.gov/cbrd/resource/1927
The principal objective of the ECoMIC project is to develop integrated control solutions that reduce energy consumption in new and existing commercial buildings while improving comfort. In this report, we summarize the technical progress that has been achieved in Phase 1 and provide the technical basis for determining whether the research results to date satisfy the success criteria for the Phase I work.
This document provides in-depth instructions and examples for creating useful information from the interval data gained from using the Energy Charting and Metrics (ECAM) tool developed by the California Energy Commission.
This guide discusses how to achieve greater energy efficiency through occupancy behavior analysis and energy auditing to create targeted and strategic behavior change.
This guide explains the benefits and process of building commissioning thereby providing owners and other stakeholders a tool to improve building efficiency and operation. It is intended to be a resource, as well as a call to action, for building owners and facility managers who want to verify their buildings are not only operating as originally intended, but also as efficiently as possible. Commissioning of new construction and major renovations is the primary focus, although commissioning of existing buildings is also briefly discussed as well.
This guide provides an overview of the different energy audit options available and information on how to select an energy auditor.
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) with funding from the U.S. Department of Energy's Building Technologies Program (BTP) evaluated a number of control strategies that can be implemented in a controller, to improve the operational efficiency of the packaged air conditioning units. The two primary objectives of this research project are: 1) determine the magnitude of energy savings achievable by retrofitting existing packaged air conditioning units with advanced control strategies not ordinarily used for packaged units and 2) estimating what the installed cost of a replacement control with the desired features should be in various regions of the U.S. This document reports results of the study.
Miscellaneous electrical loads (MELs) are building loads that are not related to general lighting, heating, ventilation, cooling, and water heating, and typically do not provide comfort to the building occupants. MELs in commercial buildings account for almost 5% of U.S. primary energy consumption. On an individual building level, they account for approximately 25% of the total electrical load in a minimally code-compliant commercial building, and can exceed 50% in an ultra-high efficiency building such as the National Renewable Energy Laboratory's (NREL) Research Support Facility (RSF). Minimizing these loads is a primary challenge in the design and operation of an energy-efficient building. A complex array of technologies that measure and manage MELs has emerged in the marketplace. Some fall short of manufacturer performance claims, however. NREL has been actively engaged in developing an evaluation and selection process for MELs control, and is using this process to evaluate a range of technologies for active MELs management that will cap RSF plug loads. Using a control strategy to match plug load use to users' required job functions is a huge untapped potential for energy savings.