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Concentration of CO2 in the Atmosphere

NESEA notes, part 3

Tuesday Afternoon Session

Notes by N.R. Mallery

2:00 PM

Trade Secrets for Getting to Deeper Savings in Commercial Buildings

Workshop Speaker(s): Kendra Tupper and Coreina Chan, Rocky Mountain Institute.

Description: This workshop will provide a working understanding of principles and tools for realizing cost effective deep energy savings in existing commercial buildings, by engaging attendees in interactive learning activities. Specific content focus areas include: Integrative whole-systems design, right-timing, bundling measures to capture savings, life cycle cost analysis (LCCA) and making the business case. This workshop will feature RMI’s “Deep Retrofit Scenario Game.” This is a dynamic team exercise in which participants evaluate a simple retrofit prospectus in order to explore the application of key concepts such as establishing performance-based goals, bundling integrated energy efficiency measures (EEMs), tunneling through cost barriers and identifying key triggers and right-timing indicators.

This is a 3 hr workship

6 ways to make DR more cost effective

Integrative whole systems design
starting with a poll of interest for the speakers, to learn if their agenda is in line with audience expectations.  It is!

Carbon emissions need to be reduced by 80%. Buildings use over 40% of the energy in the US and the amount is increasing.

Most is from the addition of new buildings. We need to get to 80% reduction somehow. Commercial buildings are significant contributors to this problem.

There is a huge opportunity for service providers out thereto get an income!

Without deep retrofits, we cannot  drive long term improvements necessary.

  • Achieve 50% or more reduction in energy use.
  • Capture all cost-effective energy savings.
  • Provide value beyond energy cost savings.
  • Drive long-term improvement in the building stock to enable a modern renewable energy based electricity system.

What is different about the design process to produce a deep energy retrofit?

2:30 PM

large energy savings, improved project economics

6 trade secrets:

  1. set quantitifiable goals
  2. define ened user needs
  3. understand existing conditions
  4. reduce loads
  5. select appropriate & effic. technology
  6. find synergies to reduce wast streams
  7. optimize controls
  8. and two others – hey this is more than SIX!?

pursue the right steps int the right order. Case study: Byron G. Rogers (BGR)

step 1: set quantifiable goals 

28 kBtu/ft2-yr
55% nrg cost savings compared with ASHRAE 90.1-2007
LEED – can’t take credit for plug load savings
recoverd heat was used for outside air instead.  recovered heat was used elsewhere

1. Define end user need.

need thermally comfy space
workstation space with light..
replace office equip and break room appliances with more efficient, ie: typical workstation setup

lower walls
promote remote working
provides 85% energy savings compared to typical setup

2. Right-time the Retrofit

piggyback on any of these ‘ripeness’ indicators:

  1. planned capital improvement
  2. major system replacement
  3. major envelope project
  4. code upgrades
  5. new owner/refinancing
  6. new use/ occupancy type
  7. building greening
  8. large utility incentives
  9. mitigatiing an ‘energy hog’
example: Deutsche bank renovation 2008-2010
3. define a business-as-usual baseline to account for avoided capital costs
There is always some cost for general functionality so business as usual (BAU) that can be considered.
life cycle costing estimating tools available

another example: Empire State Building,  saving 42% ($90 million) gross & avoided costs. A huge chunk of money could go towards what would save them.

4. bundle measures 

lighting, controls, envelope, hvac, plug loads

5. quantify value beyond

6. explore all available financing mechanisms

upfront capital is biggest block

  • loans
  • bonds
  • operating lease
  • Performance Contract
  • PACE
  • On-bill
  • Public Inentives
  • Energy Services agreement
new speaker –
Redefine the problem boundary
need innovative design process to invite stake holders for integrative design process.

Redefine scope of work:

  • gather data and content
  • interview stakeholders
  • determine end users
  • understand current nrg use profile
  • build callibrated nrg model
  • conduct tech. potential exercise
  • generate potential savings
  • set goals, energy, financial, metrics
  • Define parameters
  • establish baseline (and/or BAU) costs


  • conduct whole bldg measure analysis
  • conduct daylight analysis
  • model individual EEM’s
  • Bundle EEMS
  • LCCA
  • Estimate incremental alternate costs
  • integrate measures into drawings

Redifine scopes of work
measure & verify
manage tenant engagement

predesign – schematic desigh-design development – construction document- bidding/permitting – construction – OCCUPY!

Drive the strategic direction & storyline

This often is the architect.

  • track tasks and decision tree
  • facilitate meetings and carrettes
  • increase communication flow
  • engage stakeholders

Tips on Meeting Planning:
Recommended Book: Death by Meeting by Patrick Lencioni

  1. stakeholder education and buy in
  2. setting the vision
  3. goal setting workshop
  4. technical work session
  5. pitch to C-suite.

you want each meeting to be stand out!

mitigate risks

If this is so great -why isn’t everyone doing it?  Isn’t this the same question that the last workshop speaker asked at the end of the AM?  yes.

How are you to mitigate your own risks?

Occupants may not cooperate or behave as you expected, leading to higher energy use and cost.
Show them  during analysis – engage them. Implement a feedback program
thoroughly research technology and get user testimonials.
Test improvements.

What if energy prices do not go up and are less than expected?
longer term contract or technology
Conduct sensitivity analysis.
Dont’ let owner be surprised if the prices of energy are far greater or less than expected.
How much deviation is possible?  Scenerio planning helps with making more intelligent decisions in deep energy retrofits.
Research alternatives. Provide flexibility to upgrade – for entire systems.  Lay foundationg for flexibility for power… or fuels – form gas to electricity, ie.

Getting to net zero by 2020… or sooner.

Rocky mtn institute and DOE work together
Best in class modeling
M&V plan
Performance contracting: integrated project delivery
keep employees, tenants, and customers involved!