“Southeast offers an enormous, untapped opportunity for the energy efficiency industry”

US electric consumption in the south accounts for 32 percent which is more than any other region. Gradually the South is beginning to realize the potential savings with community-based energy efficiency programs. A recent review of the effectiveness of the programs by Cadmus Group revealed “16 southeastern cities generated $3.87 million in economic output for every $1 million spent on retrofits. The cities achieved the savings through a  Department of Energy program from 2010 to 2013.”

Southeast Energy Efficiency Alliance outlook seems to indicate public/private partnerships and new utility programs and limited to non-existent state energy efficiency resource standards.

Read more at: http://www.energyefficiencymarkets.com/energy-efficiency-southeast-embarrassment-opportunity/


“Build tight”…but don’t forget “Ventilate Right”

“Build tight”…but don’t forget “Ventilate Right”

“Traditionally, buildings have been designed to be what most people characterize as ‘acceptable to 80 percent of the occupants of the building,'” he said. “It’s historically based on perceptions of people in buildings rather than the reality.”

The article asks, “Should tougher regulations apply?”  but I think what should be asked is why doesn’t Canada encourage building science education for architects and engineers, promotion of standards such as those published by ASHRAE and create certifications for hvac and architects to increase awareness of the holistic approach to optimizing building’s performance



10 US Cities Making Massive Emissions Cuts Through Energy Efficiency

“… boosting energy efficiency through smarter energy use will also boost local economies. Ratepayers will directly benefit from a combined total of $1 billion in energy bill savings at current prices, while jobs markets will benefit from increased demand for skilled jobs from electricians to engineers, and real estate markets will benefit from higher property values and lower ownership costs.” Read more at

UNDP Volume 3 Launch– “Empowering Lives, Building Resilience – Development Stories from Europe and Central Asia”

The publication launched in Dec 2013 “shares experiences of sustainable energy initiatives supported by UNDP in Europe and Central Asia. In this region, the sustainable energy challenges include: achieving universal access; improving energy efficiency; addressing frequent power cuts; reducing high energy costs; ensuring sustainable and affordable heating in winter; and accelerating the availability of renewable energy supply.” http://www.undp.org/content/undp/en/home/presscenter/speeches/2013/12/11/helen-clark-speech-at-launch-of-empowering-lives-building-resilience-development-stories-from-europe-and-central-asia-on-sustainable-energy/

Energy efficiency measures in homes may lead to higher risk of lung cancer

The title of this article should be changed to: …may lead to poor indoor air quality.

Everyone in the energy efficiency world is familiar with the phrase “build tight, ventilate right”.  BPI and home performance programs emphasize testing for radon and if necessary installing a radon vent fan as well as makeup ventilation system for tightly sealed homes.

The other interesting part of this article is that it is based on a model and some statistical info from England. No reference of actual cases or scientific studies in the USA.

Another thing they mention is installing better insulation. However, that only addresses conductive heat loss. The convective heat loss from unsealed air gaps in your home causes drafts and results in comfort complaints.  In taller buildings air sealing saves a great deal of money.

This is a misleading article using a scare tactic.


Should Real Estate Deals Include Operating Costs? | Energy Manager Today

“Common commercial leases require the lessee to bear the cost of operations, he wrote, but this strategy also gives the landlord zero incentive to make improvements to building efficiency, primarily because any cost would be incurred by the landlord and the benefit would be to the tenant.” http://www.energymanagertoday.com/should-real-estate-deals-include-operating-costs-098128/?utm_source=Energy+Manager+Today+Newsletter&utm_campaign=7748abe218-EMT01_17_20141_17_2014&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_53218c173d-7748abe218-40030713

Will smart home technology systems make consumers more energy efficient?

” The US Environmental Protection Agency found consumers could reduce energy usage by 10-30% using schedules and temperature settings of programmable thermostats. The problem has been that consumers often struggle to effectively program thermostats and achieve those benefits.”

Is it cheaper to leave your heating on all the time or turn it on and off? | TheGreenAge

As the article discusses…the answer is it depends and the best approach is to conduct a test to see how your building performs.  Most energy efficient homes have a programmable thermostat so the heating isnt either on/off but operates based on outdoor temperature setpoint, indoor temperature setpoint as well as setup for night setback.

One other thing to consider is whether your heating system is oversized. If one decides to leave their system on 24/7 the oversized unit may short cycle (turn on/off in short period of time before reaching steady state) to maintain a setpoint which wastes energy.

Refrigeration Commissioning Guide Seeks to Ensure Systems Work Right–Free Download Available | ashrae.org

“Sixty percent of energy use in supermarkets is attributed to refrigeration, and studies have shown commissioning could result in 7 to 25 percent energy savings. A new guide from ASHRAE outlines a commissioning process that would result in substantial savings.”

Potential New PACE Programs

It is estimated that $215 million in PACE project applications arein the pipeline, according to PACENow, a nonprofit that promotes PACE programs. Texas, Michigan, St Louis, Pennsylvania and South Florida are 5 new regions that are considering developing a PACE program based on the frame work established by Connecticut and California. http://www.greentechmedia.com/articles/read/5-pace-programs-to-watch-in-2014