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Displaying 21 – 40 of 199 files

Beyond the CFL: Winning Imagery for Energy Efficiency

Public opinion research demonstrates widespread support for energy efficiency among Americans. Yet, research also shows that in the context of broader energy issues, energy efficiency emerges as a relatively low priority compared to energy sources like wind, solar, natural gas and more. Those working to advance energy efficiency policies and practices have struggled to capitalize on positive views of energy efficiency to advance energy efficiency policies. Resource Media commissioned testing of energy efficiency imagery to identify visual strategies that can help bridge from the positive associations Americans have with energy efficiency to support for the bigger picture policy initiatives needed to advance energy efficiency at the scale that’s required. The testing confirms that visuals have the power to bring energy efficiency home for people in a way that is simply not possible with wind, solar and other types of energy. This is in part because many people have experience doing simple things to make their own homes more efficient, which allows them to relate to energy efficiency personally. The research likewise confirms clear challenges when it comes to translating personal support for energy efficiency improvements in one’s home to support for energy efficiency policies in commercial and residential building sectors. People most often view energy efficiency as a personal responsibility, and not the job of government and regulations. The research demonstrates that images can inspire visceral, angry responses about energy waste, get people excited about doing things to reduce energy use in their homes, and pique interest in how businesses and institutions are saving energy and money. Ultimately, images that tap into Americans’ very positive and personal experiences with energy efficiency generate the most enthusiasm, creating a constructive context for conversations about programs that drive energy efficiency in homes and businesses.
Report/Research Brief Resident Engagement
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2.45MB

Saving Energy in Existing Multifamily Buildings

This presentation explored challenges and opportunities in achieving energy savings in multifamily buildings from an “on the ground” perspective. Using case studies and examples from recent CEE research and energy-efficiency programs, this presentation provides an overview of technologies and strategies that have proven to be effective and marketable energy-efficiency measures in Minnesota multifamily buildings, including: ventilation system retrofits, optimizing boiler control systems, optimizing condensing boilers, retrofitting trash chutes, and adding demand-based controls to domestic hot water recirculation pumps.
O&M PTEEMN Retrofit Water

Rooftop solar finds out utilities can disrupt, too

The article below points out how the utilities are fighting the solar industry by increasing their demand charges to compensate for customers generating their own power from solar. As some states and utilities define the rules of the game other states will follow suit. It also mentions how the regulations being in a state of flux may impact future investments.
Solar Utility Incentives & Programs

Valuing the Financial Benefits of Energy Efficiency in the Multifamily Sector

This paper focuses on how efficiency upgrades affect the financial performance of multifamily buildings. It also provides a replicable methodology for similar research to be carried out on Elevate Energy’s growing portfolio as well as other multifamily buildings nation-wide. Increasing the energy efficiency of multifamily buildings not only helps owners improve building operation, but also provides a lending opportunity for financial institutions. Energy efficiency program implementers and policy makers who aid in shaping utility Energy Efficiency Portfolio Standards also benefit from understanding the full range of positive effects associated with multifamily energy efficiency improvements. These non-energy benefits (NEBs) can range from improved health to job creation and lower greenhouse gas emissions. In this study, we analyzed the financial benefits of energy efficiency upgrades in multifamily buildings. We also examined building owners’ motivations for investing in energy efficiency. We looked at a group of thirteen buildings upgraded through the Elevate Energy efficient buildings program, formerly known as Energy Savers, and compared them to twenty-one buildings that underwent an energy assessment, but did not complete an upgrade. We also interviewed five building owners who completed upgrades through the program. Interviews focused on learning more about their motivations for investing in their buildings and the financial outcomes they perceive. All of the buildings in this study have naturally occurring affordable rents in low-income neighborhoods. Based on the quantitative analysis of pre- and post-upgrade data, buildings that completed an upgrade experienced a 1.6% median increase in net operating income ($29.10 per unit), a $0.12 per square foot decrease in gas costs, and a $0.34 per square foot increase in rental income six months to a year after the upgrade. In the interviews, building owners emphasized the impact of turnover costs and associated lost rental income on the success of a building. They also discussed the importance of keeping rent affordable to maintain a core group of stable, happy tenants. Overall, our results highlight the financial benefits of energy efficiency upgrades among owners who choose to complete the improvements. The paper concludes with specific recommendations for lending entities, energy efficiency programs, and building owners.
Benchmarking Database Finance Retrofit
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1.1MB

Green Tax Incentive Compendium: Federal and State Tax Incentives for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency

This volume presents certain federal and state tax incentives promoting the renewable energy and energy efficiency industries. Each section outlines the basic features and regulatory requirements for a tax program which provides financial incentives for clean technology development through renewable energy and energy efficiency projects.
Finance Incentives Renewable Energy Retrofit
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1.24MB

2014 City of Chicago Building Energy Benchmarking Report

As an economic hub, a global destination, a great place to live, and a leader on environmental sustainability, Chicago is defining what it means to be a world-class city. Chicago’s 500,000 buildings are vibrant connections to the city’s history, and these buildings house the activities that are carrying Chicago forward into the 21st century. The energy used by buildings powers Chicago’s economy and profoundly impacts the natural environment. By raising energy performance awareness and transparency, Chicago’s Building Energy Use Benchmarking Ordinance unlocks information to help accelerate efforts to save energy and strengthen the economy. The ordinance delivers on ambitious energy priorities outlined in Sustainable Chicago 2015, Mayor Emanuel’s three-year action agenda to make our city more livable, competitive, and sustainable. In 2014, the initial phase of Chicago Energy Benchmarking required municipal and commercial buildings larger than 250,000 square feet to track whole-building energy use, verify data accuracy, and report to the City. The policy is creating a foundation of information for efforts to unlock significant energy savings, and phased implementation through 2016 will include commercial, municipal, and residential buildings larger than 50,000 square feet.
Benchmarking

Net Zero and Living Building Challenge Financial Study: A Cost Comparison Report for Buildings in the District of Columbia

The District of Columbia Department of the Environment have released the findings of a recent study detailing how the District, already home to more green buildings per capita than other large cities, can best craft policy and create incentives to build zero energy, zero water and Living Buildings™. The study, Net Zero and Living Building Financial Study: A Cost Comparison Report for the Buildings in the District of Columbia, was conducted by New Buildings Institute, International Living Future Institute and Skanska and conceptually transformed three LEED v3 Platinum designed buildings to net zero energy, net zero water and Living Buildings. Its scope focused on three commonly developed building types in the District: office new construction, multifamily new construction and office renovation. “The findings in this report are eye-opening. It presents us with a policy framework that will help us achieve our goal to slash energy use to half of what it was in 2010 by 2032, and provides us with the data to back it up,” says Bill Updike, green building specialist for the District Department of the Environment. “The District has a history of leading on progressive green building policies. This report will aid our efforts to further advance the building industry toward more resilient, restorative facilities.”
Renewable Energy Retrofit Water
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3.92MB

Making Your Mark

Most operational tasks at multifamily communities strive to maximize efficiency in order to increase the bottom line. The web-based revolution in the past 10 to 15 years has helped these businesses to streamline their operations and as that technology evolves, companies are taking a closer look at, and improving, the ways they are spending money on property utilities through benchmarking.
Benchmarking

A Guide to Green Purchasing for Multifamily Housing

In order to improve building operations and contain and reduce costs, a purchasing strategy or policy should be part of any building operation and maintenance plan. One of the first steps in establishing a purchasing program is to create a green purchasing policy. A purchasing policy sets the purchasing objectives for the organization, establishes criteria, and sets goals based on organizational mission.
O&M

Making Your Mark

Most operational tasks at multifamily communities strive to maximize efficiency in order to increase the bottom line. The web-based revolution in the past 10 to 15 years has helped these businesses to streamline their operations and as that technology evolves, companies are taking a closer look at, and improving, the ways they are spending money on property utilities through benchmarking. So what is benchmarking? Putting it simply, benchmarking is the process of taking an entity’s specific set of metrics and measuring or comparing those metrics to the metrics of another entity or the average of metrics of other similar entities. In multifamily—and commercial and industrial buildings as well—an example would be taking the total use of electricity at one building and comparing that usage against other similar buildings, or the average usage of multiple buildings that are similar in stature.
Benchmarking
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220.32KB

Show Me the Money: Energy Efficiency Financing Barriers and Opportunities

This paper briefly characterizes energy efficiency market sectors; describes the major players in the energy efficiency financing market; describes the key barriers facing each market sector; reviews primary internal and external financing strategies used by each market sector; summarizes our investor discussions; and offers conclusions and recommendations for catalyzing large-scale deployment of capital to the energy efficiency sector.
ESCO Finance Split Incentive
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416.75KB

Removing First-Cost Hurdles for Energy Efficiency

This paper provides policy makers, regulators and private sector firms engaged in the design and implementation of efficiency programs with a series of innovative financing options that can be used to achieve comprehensive energy savings across a broad spectrum of residential, commercial and industrial market segments.
Energy Performance Contract On-Bill Utility Payment PACE PPAs Utility Incentives & Programs
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1.74MB

Setting the PACE: Financing Commercial Retrofits

Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) finance is a new and growing municipal approach to support energy efficiency and renewable energy upgrades in commercial buildings in the United States. As of February 2013, there were 16 commercial PACE programs accepting applications to finance building efficiency projects. Most of these have been active for less than a year, and some are just now working on their first projects. As this new market develops, early-stage PACE programs have taken different approaches to program design and administration. Lessons learned from their experiences may well shape the overall success of PACE in the years to come.
PACE
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1.05MB

Green Building and Property Value: A Primer for Building Owners and Developers

So, you are thinking about retrofitting an existing building or building a new one with green, high performance, and energy-efficient features. What is the best way for you to position your building from a valuation standpoint? Because these buildings are different, owners have had to change not only how they design, build, and market, but also how they approach financing and construction processes. Otherwise you may pay for green—with certifications, capital improvements, and marketing—and not fully realize the expected market benefits. Moving beyond the value that accrues to owners from rents, operational savings, and market recognition at sale, this guide will help building owners and developers understand the appraisal process and how green, high performance characteristics and data can be used by appraisers to help fully maximize valuation.
Valuation
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12.58MB

On-Bill Financing for Energy Efficiency Improvements

Energy efficiency retrofits in our homes and buildings can achieve large monetary and energy savings across the buildings sector, but face numerous barriers. High upfront costs continue to be one of the significant barriers to tapping into this savings potential. Addressing the financial barrier to investments in energy efficiency has been a complex hurdle, which is evident from the number of innovative energy efficiency financing program designs that have emerged over the past several decades. To achieve higher savings from energy efficiency programs for buildings, it is imperative to assist property owners with financing the upfront costs of efficiency improvements. On-bill financing (OBF) can support this goal by leveraging an electric or natural gas utility’s unique relationship with their energy customers to provide convenient access to funding for energy efficiency investments. This access to financing can then enable customer participation in other energy efficiency programs. Credit losses on both consumer and commercial utility bills tend to be far lower than for other obligations. OBF allows utility customers to invest in energy efficiency improvements and repay the funds through additional charges on their utility bills. If structured properly, an OBF program can substantially reduce the cost of and improve access to financing. In many cases, the product can be “bill-neutral,” meaning that energy savings are sufficient to cover the monthly payments for the financing so that the total monthly charge on utility bills is less than or equal to the pre-investment amount. On-bill programs have been piloted as early as 1993 (New London Resource Project, Wisconsin), but have recently seen a surge in popularity. Currently, utilities in at least 23 states have implemented or are about to implement OBF programs, many of which (Illinois, Hawaii, Oregon, California, Kentucky, Georgia, South Carolina, Michigan, and New York) have legislation in place that supports adoption. Additionally, a number of state utility regulators have taken action to explore the feasibility of on-bill programs.
On-Bill Utility Payment

Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) Toolkit

Buildings account for approximately 70% of electricity use and 40% of greenhouse gas emissions in the United States, and offer significant opportunities for energy savings and GHG emissions reductions through the installation of energy efficiency retrofits and small renewable energy systems. Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) legislation — first introduced in Berkeley, CA in 2008 and since adopted by 21 states — addresses these opportunities while overcoming several recognized barriers to their implementation: high first costs, high transaction costs involved in deciding on and financing projects, and payback times that often exceed expected occupancy. Based on the concept of special municipal tax districts, PACE districts are established by local governments to issue loans to residential and commercial property owners who want to make voluntary energy efficiency retrofits or install small renewable energy systems. The loans generally originate from municipal bonds or other similar municipal capital sources. Loan payments take the form of an assessment added to the property tax on the building, typically with a 20-year payoff period.
PACE

Energy Efficiency Finance 101: Understanding the Marketplace

The number and diversity of energy finance programs have increased dramatically in recent years. Likewise, there is a growing interest among different types of financial institutions in participating in local initiatives. However, finding a financial partner that best fits a particular program can be a challenge. This paper attempts to catalog the different categories of institutions in the marketplace so that readers will be more equipped to determine which type may offer the best fit for a local initiative. In addition, the paper offers descriptions of the different types of loan structures and mechanisms most often used in energy finance.
Finance Utility Incentives & Programs
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334.04KB

EarthCraft Multifamily 2014 Technical Guidelines

EarthCraft™ green building programs, which were first developed in 1999 through a partnership between the Greater Atlanta Home Builders Association and Southface Energy Institute, are designed to specifically address the challenging energy, water and climate conditions of the Southeast. EarthCraft certification helps ensure that buildings and communities in the region meet strict criteria for saving energy and water, ensuring high indoor air quality, and protecting our land and natural resources. To achieve an EarthCraft certification, a building is required to undergo independent third-party verification by a qualified EarthCraft Technical Advisor, who confirms the building meets all program requirements. EarthCraft™ green building programs, which were first developed in 1999 through a partnership between the Greater Atlanta Home Builders Association and Southface Energy Institute, are designed to specifically address the challenging energy, water and climate conditions of the Southeast. EarthCraft certification helps ensure that buildings and communities in the region meet strict criteria for saving energy and water, ensuring high indoor air quality, and protecting our land and natural resources. To achieve an EarthCraft certification, a building is required to undergo independent third-party verification by a qualified EarthCraft Technical Advisor, who confirms the building meets all program requirements.
EarthCraft
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3.22MB

Multifamily Energy Audit Guide

The purpose of this document is to establish best practices and guidance for conducting the energy analysis required for multifamily (MF) building energy improvement projects funded by the various programs of the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD). The intended audience includes energy auditors, building owners and operators, contractors, designers, architects, engineers, and energy efficiency consultants and program staff. Use of the best practices in this guide will improve the accuracy and uniformity of energy audits, and increase the alignment between predicted and actual energy savings in retrofitted MF buildings.
Energy Audit
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306.96KB

Displaying 21 – 40 of 199 files