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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Re-tuning focuses on a number of commonly occurring operational problems in buildings. These guides, through examples, provide details on how to detect good (normal) and bad (abnormal) operations. The purpose of the central utility plant (CUP) heating control guide is to show, through
examples of good and bad operations, how CUP heating can be efficiently controlled. This guide will focus on hot water boilers and their operations
This project focuses on testing and demonstrating both the hardware and Cloud versions of theSMDS under field conditions. The objectives for testing and demonstrating the hardware are to 1) characterize the performance of the SMDS technology, 2) estimate the savings-to-cost ratio for demonstration units, and 3) characterize the usability of the SMDS including ease of installation and use. The SMDS provides information to the user, but to realize savings, actions must be taken by the user. The hardware demonstrations seek to discover how effective information is in influencing actions, including which faults generate the most servicing actions by the user.
These field demonstrations are of prototype SMDS units, which have not yet completed the product development process. These early demonstration projects are critical to understanding SMDS performance in the field and to gaining a better understanding of the potential performance or user interface enhancements needed in the next generation SMDS units. Conclusions related to the larger commercial building market, such as the incidence of performance degradation and specific faults and the energy savings resulting from addressing them are beyond the scope of this study and not compatible with the current stage of SMDS development.
The demonstration was performed separately for the hardware and Cloud versions of the SMDS. Both demonstrations involved selecting buildings, installing the required hardware (although it requires less hardware, the Cloud version requires sensors and cell modems), collecting and processing data, and viewing and tabulating results. Details of the procedures are presented later in this report.
Comprehensive commissioning can greatly improve the quality and energy efficiency of commercial refrigeration systems. This guide provides direction to owners and managers of commercial and industrial facilities that use refrigeration systems to help ensure that project requirements are met and that owners' expectations are achieved. This includes retail grocery, food service, refrigerated warehousing, and industrial refrigeration systems. The guide was produced as an ASHRAE special publication with funding from DOE/NREL.
NorthBay VacaValley Hospital completed lighting retrofits to their 150,000 square foot parking lot and its 225 parking spaces. They did so with help from The California Lighting Technology Center (CLTC) at the University of California, Davis. The project has achieved 65% savings and received a 2014 Lighting Energy Efficiency in Parking (LEEP) Campaign’s award for best use of lighting controls. In addition, the retrofits improved lighting maintenance operations and end-user satisfaction.
The lighting retrofit included replacing roughly 50 induction luminaires with new LED fixtures with embedded lighting controls.
The new LED fixtures were coupled with various kinds of lighting control systems, including a radio frequency (RF) connectivity control system that was installed in dedicated zones with passive- infrared (PIR) and long-range microwave sensors to achieve energy savings. An “ultra-smart” lighting control network was also put in place, giving facility managers the ability to adjust lighting schedules, light levels and time-out settings, monitor the system’s energy use, and receive automated alerts when luminaires require maintenance.
A net zero-energy community (ZEC) is one that has greatly reduced energy needs through efficiency gains such that the balance of energy for vehicles, thermal, and electrical energy within the community is met by renewable energy. Past work resulted in a common zero-energy building (ZEB) definition system of “zero energy” and a classification system for ZEBs based on the renewable energy sources used by a building. This paper begins with a focus solely on buildings and expands the concept to define a zero-energy community, applying the ZEB hierarchical renewable classification system to the concept of community. A community that offsets all of its energy use from renewables available within the community’s built environment and unusable brownfield sites is at the top of the ZEC classification system at a ZEC of A. (A brownfield site is where the redevelopment or reuse may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant or contaminant.) A community that achieves a ZEC definition primarily through the purchase of new off-site, Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) is placed at the lowest end of the ZEC classification but is still considered a good achievement.
On December 6, 2016, the U.S. Department of Energy announced the launch of a new partnership to jump-start zero energy schools across the country. The Zero Energy Schools Accelerator enables states and school districts alike to design, construct, and operate these cutting-edge, energy-saving schools. This press release highlights the importance of the Accelerator by featuring a completed zero energy school, Discovery Elementary in Arlington, Virginia.
The Department of Energy’s (DOE) National Renewable Energy Laboratory’s (NREL) goal is to expand our leadership as a state-of the-art laboratory that supports innovative research, development, and commercialization of renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies that address the nation’s energy and environmental needs. Fundamental to this goal is NREL’s commitment to sustainability--operating in a manner that balances environmental, economic, and social values in the delivery of our mission. At NREL, sustainability is integral to both our research and operations. NREL is committed to demonstrating federal leadership in sustainability, working to continuously improve our performance and lead by example. This document provides an updated NREL site sustainability plan for 2014.
Momentum behind zero energy building design and construction is increasing, presenting a tremendous opportunity for advancing energy performance in the commercial building industry. At the same time, there is a lingering perception that zero energy buildings must be cost prohibitive or limited to showcase projects. Fortunately, an increasing number of projects are demonstrating that high performance can be achieved within typical budgets. This factsheet highlights replicable, recommended strategies for achieving high performance on a budget, based on experiences from past projects.
There is mounting evidence that zero energy can, in many cases, be achieved within typical construction budgets. To ensure that the momentum behind zero energy buildings and other low-energy buildings will continue to grow, this guide assembles recommendations for replicating specific successes of early adopters who have met their energy goals while controlling costs. Contents include: discussion of recommended cost control strategies, which are grouped by project phase (acquisition and delivery, design, and construction) and accompanied by industry examples; recommendations for balancing key decision-making factors; and quick reference tables that can help teams apply strategies to specific projects.