Better Buildings - U.S. Department of Energy





The Better Buildings Bulletin is a bi-monthly feature to help keep you up-to-date on partner successes, program updates, opportunities to participate, and more. To view the Bulletin online, click here.

In This Issue

Latest News and Announcements

U.S. Department of Energy and National Association of Manufacturers Announce Sustainability in Manufacturing Partnership

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) are pleased to announce the Sustainability in Manufacturing partnership. Through this partnership fostered by DOE’s Better Plants program, DOE and the NAM will work together to help U.S. manufacturers drive energy productivity improvements and accelerate adoption of energy efficient technologies.

The Sustainability in Manufacturing partnership will provide DOE and the NAM the opportunity to engage directly with manufacturers, identify opportunities for energy efficiency improvements, and serve as a platform to recognize companies and leaders that have led the way in the application of innovative strategies.

Energy Department Recognized Leadership in Commercial Building Rooftop Efficiency – 2018 Advanced Rooftop Unit Campaign Awards

DOE’s Advanced Rooftop Unit (RTU) Campaign is recognizing seven organizations for their leadership in installing more energy efficient RTUs in commercial buildings. As part of the Better Buildings Initiative, the Advanced RTU Campaign works with commercial building owners, managers, and operators that wish to upgrade to high-efficiency RTU technologies and practices in commercial buildings, as well as utilities, energy efficiency organizations, contractors, and manufacturers that can assist. Since its 2013 launch, more than 300 partners have replaced or upgraded close to 115,000 units, saving more than $90 million in energy costs annually.

Together, these seven organizations replaced and/or retrofitted more than 10,000 units and installed 5,800 Automated Fault Detection and Diagnostics (AFDD) systems in a single year, realizing an annual savings of more than 50 million kilowatt hours (kWhs), equivalent to $5 million. New recognition categories for AFDD and intelligent controls were included this year to align with the campaign’s enhanced focus on operational efficiency.

COMING SOON: Season 4 of the Better Buildings SWAP

The Better Buildings Challenge SWAP is back for a fourth season! L’Oréal USA and General Motors swap energy teams in this manufacturing-focused installment of the hit Department of Energy web series. Season 4 debuts April 24, so be sure to bookmark the SWAP homepage so you don’t miss a minute!

Registration is Open for the Better Buildings Summit

The Better Buildings Summit is teaming up with DOE’s Energy Exchange for a one-of-a-kind event in Cleveland, Ohio. From August 21-23, attendees will be treated to technical discussions and trainings, diverse panel sessions with industry-leading speakers, networking opportunities, and much more.

The 2018 Summit will feature over 150 sessions, trainings, and workshops, and participants will be able to earn Continuing Education Unit (CEU) credits. There will also be tours of local high-performing buildings, and Summit attendees will have access to the Energy Exchange Trade Show.

Review the Event Schedule now and get registered today: early-bird registration ends June 15.

Better Plants Partners Featured in Direct Current Podcast

A pair of energy detectives are hunting down waste and saving money at two big U.S. manufacturing companies. Tari and Kurt Emerson are the energy managers for Charter Steel and Harley-Davidson, respectively. Direct Current, an podcast, featured their story on the episode "Power Couple." Listen and learn how the Better Plants program is helping partners across the nation find similar success.

Top 10 Solutions in March

Cherry blossoms are blooming and springtime is here, along with our 10 most-viewed solutions from March. With solutions from schools, hotels, industrial facilities, and more, these innovative projects and resources have something to offer regardless of your building sector. Make sure to check out past Top 10s!

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Welcome New Partners!

Better Buildings Challenge

  • Bozzuto Management Co.

Better Buildings Alliance

  • Neema Hospitality

Better Plants

  • Donsco, Inc.
  • Texas Nameplate Co.

Better Plants Challenge

  • L'Oréal USA

Better Buildings Accelerators

Smart Labs

  • Emory University
  • UCI Medical Center
  • USDA Agricultural Research Service

Better Buildings Residential Network

  • Affordable Custom Builders
  • BEST-Techs Contracting
  • CA Hub for Energy Efficiency Financing
  • ClearlyEnergy
  • Hartford Steam Boiler & Insurance Co.
  • Inspection Perfection
  • United Energy Advisors

New Partner Solutions

The following Implementation Models, Showcase Projects, and Solutions at a Glance demonstrate the hard work and innovative thinking of Better Buildings partners. Take advantage of their success and check them out in the Better Buildings Solution Center.

Implementation Models

Energy Efficiency in Multi-Tenant Data Centers

At multi-tenant, colocation data centers, customers have varied needs and at times non-standard IT equipment, making the implementation of hot aisle containment complicated and potentially more expensive. Sabey Data Centers designed the Intergate Quincy – Building C facility to require hot aisle containment from all customers, while ensuring Sabey maintains ample flexibility in deploying the containment.

Home Depot Renewable and Alternative Energy Market Options Enable Expanding Commitments (RILA Retail Energy Management Program)

Throughout the years, Home Depot has taken advantage of the most appropriate market options to implement a variety of onsite and offsite renewable energy projects to help achieve its targets: 135 megawatts (MW-ac) of energy through renewable and alternative sources by 2020 (approximately 62 MW of wind, 43 MW of fuel cells, 15 MW of offsite solar, and 15 MW of rooftop solar).

Innovations for Incentivizing Energy Conservation

Aurora Public Schools designed an incentive-based energy conservation program to promote the district's energy reduction goal of 20 percent by 2023. As of 2017, the district has measured a 12 percent reduction from a 2013 baseline.

Portfolio-Wide Capital and Energy Planning

The New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) set a goal to reduce per-square-foot energy consumption by 20 percent by 2025. Meeting this goal across more than 176,000 apartments in 2,600 buildings will require both operational improvements and a substantial investment in capital upgrades. NYCHA decided to employ multiple large-scale Energy Performance Contracts (EPCs) to kick-start investment in energy efficiency while developing a long-term strategy for energy-smart capital investments.

Showcase Projects

Comfort Inn & Suites Boston Logan International Airport

Saunders Hotel Group achieved 21 percent energy savings at the Comfort Inn and Suites Boston by installing a new cost-effective cogeneration unit and implementing other energy conservation measures throughout the hotel, contributing to Saunders' corporate sustainability initiatives.

Department of Inspectional Services

The heating and cooling rooftop units (RTUs) in the Worcester, Massachusetts Department of Inspectional Services were 20 years old and failing. Facing the inevitable cost of replacing non-functioning equipment, the city replaced all four RTUs with energy-efficient units.

Distributed Site Consolidation and Continuous Energy Improvement

Schneider Electric sought a 30-50 percent reduction in data center operations costs attributed to energy consumption, so it consolidated one primary legacy data center and multiple distributed data centers into a modern facility that offered greater reliability and energy efficiency.

Intergate Quincy, Building C

By requiring customers to utilize hot aisle containment and by installing variable and efficient infrastructure, Sabey Data Centers was able to achieve Energy Star certification for this data center with a perfect score of 100, and a 57 percent reduction in energy use.

Woodland Hills – 21555 Oxnard Street

Anthem implemented a landscaping redesign plan to reduce water demand and create a more resilient environment at the 21555 Oxnard Street campus in Woodland Hills, California, which reduced its water demand by 46 percent annually.

Solutions at a Glance

Energy Data Optimization – Dashboards, Utility Bill Verification, and Open Data

To improve the city’s energy management process, Boston implemented a programmatic overhaul in how energy data was collected, analyzed, and reported. Boston incorporated a blend of in-house and outsourced strategies to optimize resources and staff availability.

Loews Score Card

Loews Hotels & Co. developed a Score Card tool to evaluate physical and operational performance across their building portfolio. This tool provides accountability for the engineering staff who are tasked with meeting the company’s corporate sustainability goals and helps direct capital investment in renovations and upgrades.

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Mark Your Calendar: Upcoming Webinars, Industry Events

Better Buildings Webinars

April 25: 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM ET
Advanced Energy Design Guidelines for K-12 Schools

Every school district should be able to create zero energy schools because of recent advancements in technology. What are some strategies to get there? Join us for a review of the recently released Advanced Energy Design Guide for K-12 School Buildings: Achieving Zero Energy (AEDG). If you are an educator, administrator, architect, engineer, or other buildings operations professional who is interested in pursuing zero energy schools, or has experience in zero energy projects, sign up today.

Register here

May 10: 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM ET
Making the Grid Smart: Moving Toward Two-Way Communication in the Digital Age

Join this peer exchange call with the Better Buildings Residential Network to learn more about smart grid at a scale, the potential for increased energy reliability, and gain a better understanding of energy data through two-way, real-time data exchange.

Register here

May 10: 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM ET
Implementing ESPC Projects

This training features practical tips for carrying out an Energy Savings Performance Contracting (ESPC) project. Tool highlights include: ESPC Virtual Technical Assistant, Financing Decision Tree, Best Practices for Selecting an Energy Service Company, Model ESPC Contract Documents, and eProject Builder.

Register here

June 14: 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM ET
Establishing an ESPC Program

This training is geared towards state and local governments establishing support and services for ESPC as the go-to project financing mechanism in their jurisdictions. Tool highlights include: ESPC Key Attributes, Guidelines for Establishing ESPC Support Program, Virtual Technical Assistant for download, Networking Toolkit, Champions Toolkit, and State ESPC Program Examples.

Register here

July 10: 3:00 PM – 4:00 PM ET
Financing 2.0: Navigating 3rd-Party Financing for Efficiency and Renewables

This webinar introduces the Better Buildings Financing Navigator 2.0, the latest iteration of DOE’s online tool that helps connect organizations with financing for energy efficiency and renewable energy projects. Join to learn about the new features and key trends in financing.

Register here

Tech Team Calls and Technology Webinars

April 17: 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM ET
Electric Vehicles: Opportunities and Business Models

During this Renewables Integration Tech Team meeting, attendees will be treated to a discussion of Electric Vehicle (EVs): what's new, the latest opportunities, and solar photovoltaic (PV) integration with EVs. John Gartner of Navigant will be available to answer questions.

Register here

April 19: 12:00 PM – 1:30 PM ET
GPG Outbrief Webinar: Electrochromic Windows

Part of the GSA’s Proving Ground series, this webinar will feature researchers and facility managers discussing findings from test-bed evaluations of electrochromic windows in buildings with glass curtain-wall facades, as well as in Land Ports of Entry. Presenters from Lawrence Berkeley National Lab will also share operational guidance and answer questions.

Register here

April 19: 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM ET
Lessons Learned from IoT/Smart Lighting Installations

Facilities managers are increasingly looking at upgrading existing equipment to LEDs coupled with luminaire-integrated sensors and controls. This webinar will cover results from the Next Generation Lighting Systems field evaluation of 12 systems currently installed in classrooms at The New School, Parsons School of Design, in New York City. How did the installations go? What challenges did the contractors encounter? Following the presentation, participants can provide feedback related to IoT and connected lighting needs.

Register here

April 25: 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM ET
Keeping Your Fan Systems at Peak Performance

The Space Conditioning Team’s latest call will feature two new resources to improve fan performance. Fans systems are essential to the comfort and health conditions in buildings, and they consume nearly 160 billion kWh of electricity. Maintaining and improving fan systems can be challenging. Join this discussion to learn best practices for tuning your fan systems for optimal performance from two industry experts.

Register here

May 17: 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM ET
Building Envelope Technology Research Team Technology Showcase

The Better Buildings Envelope Technology Research Team is hosting a virtual technology showcase. Oak Ridge National Lab (ORNL) will host industry experts for technology profiles presentations on windows, walls, and roofs.

Register here

Industry Events and Conferences

April 23-26
2018 HPC National Home Performance Conference and Trade Show

The Home Performance Coalition (HPC) joins with industry leaders and home performance contracting businesses, program administrators, and others working in the residential energy efficiency industry for its annual meeting.

Register here

May 3-4
Green Schools Conference and Expo

Take part in engaging educational sessions, hear about case studies, and participate in hands-on workshops and lectures from today’s green school experts. This conference is an opportunity for green school advocates nationwide to collaborate and learn from one another.

Register here

May 7-9
CleanMed 2018

The premier national environmental conference for leaders in health care sustainability, CleanMed offers an opportunity for those on the leading edge of greening the health care sector to connect with businesses with environmentally preferable products and services. The meeting is presented each year by Practice Greenhealth and Health Care Without Harm.

Register here

May 21-22
ACEEE 2018 Energy Efficiency Finance Forum

The 2018 Finance Forum will explore innovative models for financing energy efficiency and find out what works and why. Attendees will learn how to get started on financing projects that save energy, reduce costs, and create jobs.

Register here

June 12-14
Industrial Energy Technology Conference (IETC)

The IETC is hosted by the Energy Systems Laboratory at Texas A&M University and the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources. The conference features topics important to industrial energy managers, utility experts, government program managers, and vendors; attendees can look forward to presentations on the latest technologies and expertise on smart manufacturing, corporate energy management, and real-world industrial efficiency.

Register here

June 13-16
NAA Apartmentalize

Formerly the National Apartment Association’s Education Conference & Expo, Apartmentalize is an annual conference for educating professionals of all job functions within the rental housing industry. Education tracks cover everything from operations and maintenance to incorporating sustainability and energy efficiency. The meeting also features a multi-day trade show.

Register here

June 23-26
BOMA International Conference

BOMA’s annual meeting is ideal for property managers, asset managers, building engineers, and others in real estate management and ownership. Training and education opportunities span a variety of building types, from high-rise to mixed-use, and medical buildings to universities, with tracks devoted to technology advancements, actionable solutions, and sustainability.

Register here

July 15-18
ASHE Annual Conference and Technical Exhibition

Explore future trends and challenges in health care alongside thousands of other health care facility and engineering professionals. Attendees will have the chance to network and learn how to improve their efficiency, compliance, and other key areas.

Register here

August 3-5
APPA Leadership in Educational Facilities 2018

APPA 2018 is a platform for discussion, information sharing, networking, and much more. Join education colleagues for this distinctive international event where we discover best practices used around the world from more than 100 presenters, to include the most recognized and talented educational facilities leaders representing facilities officers, directors, and managers.

Register here

August 21-23
Better Buildings Summit/Energy Exchange

The Summit is one of the premier events for energy professionals to engage with one another and explore and share innovative strategies, emerging technologies, financing trends, and much more. This year, the Summit will be held with DOE’s annual Energy Exchange, focused on federal facility energy management, to provide greater access to technical discussions and training while also providing the great panel sessions, keynote speakers, and networking opportunities attendees expect at the Summit.

Register here

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Latest from the Beat Blog and Partners in the News

Beat Blog: Featured Stories

This is just a taste of what’s happening on the Better Buildings Beat Blog! Visit the Beat Blog online for the whole story!

Earn Recognition by the Department of Energy for Interior Lighting Upgrades

The Interior Lighting Campaign (ILC) is accepting applications for its 2018 recognition cycle, which covers projects completed between January 2013 and April 2018. Commercial building owners that have achieved significant energy savings in their troffer, linear suspended, high bay, and/or low bay lighting and controls projects are encouraged to apply. The deadline for recognition applications is April 23, 2018. Apply today!

Register Now: ESPC Webinar Series

The Better Buildings Program has launched a five-part series exploring the tools and resources of the Energy Savings Performance Contracting (ESPC) Accelerator. Learn innovative best practices developed in collaboration with 25 state and local organizations to overcome common barriers to implementing ESPC: streamlining the ESPC process, empowering the ESPC market with project data, building a national ESPC framework, and using innovative approaches for applying ESPC in new market sectors. The full schedule and registration information is here.

A Smart Building Dialogue

In February, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) hosted an invite-only roundtable with a diverse representation of commercial building operators working to support smart building technology implementation. Attendees represented the commercial real estate, education, retail, grocery, hospitality, and healthcare industries, federal and state/local government, and several other national labs.

Check out the Better Buildings Challenge Multifamily Sector’s New Page for Energy and Water Efficiency Resources!

There are plenty of energy and water efficiency resources available to multifamily property owners but locating the right one can be a challenge. The Better Buildings Challenge Multifamily team has responded by creating a new Multifamily Energy and Water Efficiency Resources page on the HUD Exchange. The resources are categorized by topic and cover everything from Retrofit Planning to Resident Engagement.

Better Buildings, Seventhwave Tackle Hot-Energy Topics at Energy Innovators Forum in Chicago

Better Buildings hit the road to participate in the Energy Innovators Forum in Chicago in late February. Local energy efficiency practitioners gathered at the DIRTT Green Learning Center in downtown Chicago for some serious idea exchange on hot energy topics.

The Beat Blog is updated throughout the week.

Partners in the News

Select news articles featuring Better Buildings partners are listed below. Recently, partners have been recognized by Health Facilities Management, Electrical News, Solar Power World, and more.

For a full listing, please visit the Better Buildings Partners in the News page.

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Better Information

Better Buildings Alliance

Archived Webinars

Cutting Water Waste: DOE and EPA Resources to Advance Water Efficiency

Learn about tools and resources from the U.S. Department of Energy and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency that can help you meter and track water consumption, identify savings opportunities, and implement best practices to accelerate your water saving strategies.

Taking Control: Best Practices in Energy Data Management and Tools for Success

State, local, and commercial sector partners shared best practices on energy data management and introduced DOE’s Energy Data Management Guide for the public sector.

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Is There Something We Missed?

Tell us! We want to promote partner successes in our newsletters, emails, social media, and of course the Beat Blog. You can reach us at:

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