Ensuring the Most Energy Efficient Equipment

How can facility managers make sure they’re getting the most energy efficiency out of new or upgraded building equipment? Ongoing energy use measurement and diagnostics will help optimize energy performance and keep building systems operating smoothly. There are new building energy management applications which bridge between data collection to diagnostics, alerts, and work orders, but an excellent facilities manager is …

Quick Reads on LEED

1. Challenges Seeking LEED Status in Older Buildings Pursuing certification through the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating system can create major challenges for maintenance and engineering managers. The task is even greater when the institutional and commercial facilities date back to the days of Thomas Jefferson. “It certainly presents a challenge for us to access the HVAC …

Net zero energy for retail is possible

Jason Robbins, Walgreens manager of mechanical engineering, and Jamie Meyers, manager of sustainability at Walgreens, discuss the energy-efficient technologies used in the net-zero drugstore in Evanston. Imagine paying pennies for your utility bill. Better yet, imagine paying nothing. That’s the chimera architects, scientists, and building owners have chased for decades. “Net-zero” energy is a simple enough concept; it’s the idea …

California’s First Net Zero Energy Library

Editor’s Foreword: During my college years, I used to swing by the West Berkeley Public Library on University Avenue after shopping at the nearby art stores for my studio projects. I remember its dismal entrance, dim lighting, and run-down furniture squeezed into tight quarters. I’m so excited to learn that it has been replaced with a beautiful, modern, and green building, …

LEED-Certified Buildings Are Often Less Energy-Efficient Than Uncertified Ones

The term “going green” is gaining favor with a growing number of companies. Look no further than “green” certification plaques displayed outside buildings, or the litany of products on store shelves labeled organic. For those concerned with keeping up appearances, going green has never been easier. But for business owners focused on creating value for customers, it’s never been more …

LEED v4 Expands Acoustic Performance In Multiple Areas

In addition to Schools and Healthcare, LEED Building Design and Construction (BD+C) v4 expands acoustic performance into several other variations of the rating system, such as New Construction, Data Centers, and Hospitality. LEED Interior Design and Construction (ID+C) v4 also includes a new EQ credit for Acoustic Performance. LEED BD+C v4 EQ Prerequisite: Minimum Acoustic Performance (Schools only). This Schools-only prerequisite …

LEED-EBOM Commissioning Credits Focus On Maintaining Efficient Operations

LEED for New Construction currently provides elements that help link design and construction to operations, but because many are voluntary, they are typically underused. The most apparent opportunity exists within two areas of the Energy and Atmosphere category. The enhanced commissioning credit in the New Construction rating system specifically helps to bridge the gap from the end of design and …

LEED v4 Offers More Stringent Acoustical Standards

Typically, the term indoor environmental quality (IEQ) evokes considerations of healthy indoor air along with visual and thermal comfort. Adequate ventilation, indoor pollution source control, equitable controllability of lighting systems, and access to daylight and views appropriately draw focus as key concepts for design teams endeavoring for optimal indoor environments. However, the high-performance design community is now beginning to recognize …

Experience Shows Value Of Smart Building Measures, But Obstacles Remain

Facility executives say that money often is the biggest obstacle to smart building strategies. Tom Walsh, chief engineer for Transwestern Commercial Services, stresses this includes not just first cost, but also return on investment (ROI). “We prefer ROIs in two to three years,” Walsh explains. He also looks for energy improvements that will increase the value of the building. The …