We have seen the future and it is bubbly. This summer we’ve been busy testing the effectiveness of using an indirect evaporative air conditioner to retrofit an existing 5-ton rooftop unit (RTU) in the western Washington and Oregon climate. Testing is ongoing at the NBI Laboratory (NBIL), a 1000 square foot RTU testing facility where NBI has tested high performance RTUs and variable speed components in previous years. Read more »
More than 80 public building representatives met in Sacramento recently to kick off California’s ZNE Early Adopters Network. The meeting was the first of three planned sessions to support public sector leadership in zero-net energy (ZNE) practice, process, and planning in order to meet California’s Energy Efficiency Strategic Plan Big Bold goals for ZNE in new residential and commercial construction by 2020 and 2030, respectively. Read more »
Vermont adopted a “stretch code” for building energy efficiency in the spring of 2013. The stretch code will be developed through a public, statewide process and will then be available for local adoption by towns that want to go above and beyond the statewide energy code. NEEP’s guest-blogger George Twigg, Director of Public Affairs at Efficiency Vermont shares his perspective. Read blog
Following the recent release of President Obama’s Climate Action Plan, the U.S. Department of Energy (USDOE) announced an investment that will reduce energy use while helping U.S. businesses reduce costs. A $10 million investment by USDOE is funding six projects to reduce carbon pollution and energy bills in small commercial buildings by increasing energy efficiency. Read more »
Zero-net energy (ZNE) buildings, ultra-energy-efficient structures that produce as much energy on site than they consume over the course of a year, are gaining ground and national attention. NBI is partnering with NASEO to host “Getting to Zero National Forum” September 17-18. Attendees will share perspectives on the growth of ZNE policies and projects and discuss the future. In the meantime, a blog has been created to share ZNE related news and information leading up to the event. Follow the blog
2012 was a good year for energy efficiency, and 2013 portends to be even better.
In 2012, states, municipalities, and federal agencies largely completed their energy efficiency programs using funds from the 2009 federal stimulus. Notable milestones included weatherizing more than 1 million low-income homes and apartments and establishing energy efficiency loan programs in more than 30 states. Read more »
The remarkable events of the last few weeks, from a heated presidential election to “Superstorm” Sandy that left unanticipated destruction in its wake, brought with them new questions and much needed debate about our nation's energy challenges. Last week saw an end to a campaign that, for many, continuously sidestepped discussions about energy independence, efficiency and conservation on the heels of a storm that swept those very issues back onto the tongues of politicians and policy-makers alike. Not to mention green building and energy sector players. Read more »