At this year’s 31st annual conference for the Association of Energy Service Professionals (AESP) and presented virtually, ERI’s Engineering Manager Ethan Clifford will discuss strategies for benchmarking and remote data analytics during the era of COVID-19. On January 28th at 8:30am PT, the session will explore a tool that ERI has piloted and used to successfully identify energy savings potential as well as for targeting specific measures. The data-driven tool uses minimal inputs such as monthly utility data, square footage, and historic temperatures to generate weather dependent building models. These models can then be benchmarked individually or as a portfolio of buildings to identify which have the greatest cost saving potential. The output of this tool provides building and property management companies a no cost option to reduce their operating spend and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Building and property managers are constantly evaluating various investments into their building and tenant modifications. These investments come with their own set of challenges such as capital, complexity of the retrofit, and available time to install due to tenant occupancy. It is common to use consultants or vendors to identify these potential upgrades which may be costly or have a bias approach to their evaluation. LBNL in connection with Johnson Controls developed the BETTER tool (Building Efficiency Targeting Tool for Energy Retrofits) to help building and property managers identify and estimate utility cost savings using a free building benchmarking tool. The tool utilizes minimal inputs to generate temperature dependent change point models which identify optimal operational and technological improvements. The results help customers make the most cost-effective energy efficiency investments and realize actual savings. In comparison to other benchmarking tools such as Energy Star, the BETTER tool takes minutes to setup and identify energy saving opportunities without the need to hire a consultant. The major benefit of the tool is the portfolio assessment to compare a building’s performance against other buildings entered within the tool with very low effort.
ERI has utilized the BETTER tool to help customers make informed and educated investments for large building portfolios. For the California state agency, ERI leverages the BETTER tool to help identify which properties have high potential energy savings from low cost investments. After multiple iterations of using the BETTER tool to analyze sets of facilities, ERI identified multiple buildings for prioritization and further study. Energy audits have since been performed for several of these buildings and have shown very high energy savings potential.
The presentation will provide an in-depth review of the BETTER tool’s user interface and results. ERI will use example data to show how simple the tool is to use and assess various building portfolios. ERI will then review various results obtained from the tool and how we leveraged the tool for individual building benchmarking for site assessments.
To register for the conference please visit the AESP 2021 website.