The City of Chicago has found out the results of its first-ever assessment of energy use in the city's largest commercial and municipal buildings, based on reporting from 348 nonresidential buildings representing 260 million square feet of space and approximately 11 percent of citywide energy use in buildings.
State Electric Efficiency Regulatory Frameworks reveals that spending and budgets for customer-funded utility electric-efficiency programs continue to grow, driven, in part, by the evolution of state policies that allow utilities to pursue efficiency. In fact, utility company electric efficiency budgets totaled $7 billion in 2013, a 30 percent increase from 2010.
A partnership between the Institute for Market Transformation (IMT) and the Council of Smaller Enterprises (COSE) could indicate a trend that would break down the barriers holding back energy efficiency in commercial buildings, especially when it comes to the lease.
The U.S. military was an early leader in investigating, testing and adopting renewable energy technologies in a variety of settings, including battlefield energy security and enhancing energy efficiency at its military bases. In its latest iteration, the U.S. Navy has signed a deal with SolarCity to provide solar powered military housing in San Diego.
Energy efficiency and renewable energy investments totaling in excess of $18 million made by the DC Sustainable Energy Utility (DCSEU) during Fiscal Year 2014 will result in more than $100 million in lifetime energy savings for District residents and businesses, according to the DCSEU's 2014 Annual Report.
Europe is getting serious about energy efficiency in its commercial buildings. As a result of legislation, mandatory changes to country-level building codes are increasing the performance requirements that apply to new construction and major renovations of existing buildings. These codes are pushing toward the delivery of nearly zero energy buildings by 2019 and 2021 for public and private buildings, respectively.
Arizona has one the toughest sets of standards for utility energy efficiency programs in the country. But the Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC) has proposed eliminating at least a portion of the requirements, specifically the mandate that utilities realize 22 percent in energy savings for their customers by 2020.
Superstorm Sandy demonstrated the need to proactively strengthen critical infrastructure so it is more resilient to extreme weather. A series of storm resiliency measures and energy-efficiency upgrades have been completed at New York's Coney Island Hospital in an effort to protect critical equipment from extreme flooding like what the hospital experienced in 2012 during Superstorm Sandy.
The California Energy Commission (CEC) is poised to move ahead on its promise to adopt energy-efficiency standards for plug-in digital devices, including desktop computers, monitors, displays and other devices later this month. The recent publication of a research report by the University of California, Irvine for the CEC showing the large amounts of electricity wasted by computers in California demonstrates the economic burden, the undue waste and costs these devices place on consumers. New standards for these devices are long overdue.
Denver, Colorado has announced a plan that will unlock $1.3 billion in energy savings through a targeted effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the energy used by commercial and multi-family buildings. So far, 57 building owners have committed to benchmarking and measuring their performance.