Driving Energy Efficiency through Better Buildings

by ‐ Tags: alternative energy, benchmarking policy, tracking and benchmarking, measurement and verification

We love energy tracking, the key idea behind the US Government's Better Building Challenge. Over the next few weeks there are a number of terrific events focused on reducing energy and saving money by improving the built environment through energy efficiency upgrades.

Annual Better Buildings Summit: May 30th-31st in Washington DC

2013 Better Building Alliance Efficiency Forum, May29-30th, Golden CO

LABBC Webinar: Baselining and Measurement & Verification of Energy Savings, May 22nd

Better Buildings Save Energy

Where did the name Better Buildings come from?  In 2010 the US Department of Energy faced a branding problem.  They had hundreds of millions of dollars to invest in saving energy and money through the competitive Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant (EECBG) program.   EECBG is a name that only a policy wonk could love.  So a team got together and asked what was the goal, and they came up with the simple name Better Buildings Challenge.  Out of this branding came a series of programs spearheaded by the US DOE and the White House.

Today

“Better Buildings is a broad, multi-strategy initiative with goals of reducing by 20 percent the energy intensity in the commercial and industrial sectors by 2020, catalyzing revolutionary change in energy use across U.S. buildings, and making a permanent impact on lowering energy bills, reducing pollution, and growing domestic jobs. “ – Better Buildings Progress Report 2012

More than 110 organizations ranging from cities to corporations to real estate property owners have committed.  This represents over two billion square feet of real estate.  They are using a variety of methods to create an energy baseline and energy benchmarks ranging from sophisticated building management systems, to EPA Portfolio manager, to automated benchmarking services like WegoWise.  Participating organizations then commit to share best practices.

The Better Building Challenge complements local initiatives accross the USA including energy benchmarking and disclosure laws in Philadelphia, Boston, DC, and California.

To learn more about the Better Buildings Challenge, here are some great resources

Better Buildings Challenge Home Page

Better Buildings 2012 Progress Report

Showcase Projects Highlighted on DOE Blog

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