In the News

Approaching Zero

Design teams reach the once-elusive goal of creating buildings that produce as much energy as they consume, reports Architectural Record. A building that produces all the energy it requires, without sacrifices to its operations or concessions of human comfort, might sound like pie in the sky. But according to the New Buildings Institute (NBI), 160 commercial and institutional buildings in the U.S. are targeting or have achieved net zero energy—meaning that, over the course of a year, they produce at least as much energy from renewable sources as they consume. (10/1/2014) Read article

New Energy Code Approach Could Be Industry Game-Changer

When Seattle's Supply Laundry Building opened in 1906, building codes looked rather different than they do today. And energy codes weren't yet a gleam in even the most progressive politician's eye. These days, however, after a full renovation and a listing on the National Register of Historic Places, the building (along with two other pilots in Seattle) is serving as a test case for a new type of energy code compliance, one that has the potential to be nothing short of an industry game-changer. The Supply Laundry Building is using an outcome-based method of compliance that will require actual energy usage data. FacilitiesNet recently reported on outcome-based codes. (10/1/2014) Read article

System Control Offers Increased HVAC Efficiency For Smaller Buildings

Environmental Leader reported on new technology in heating, venting and air conditioning building automation systems for small- and mid-sized buildings. The article references a 2004 New Buildings Institute study, which found that 91 percent of the packaged rooftop units tested had at least one problem that increased cooling energy consumption by 5 to 40 percent. (8/14/2014) Read article

Zero Net Energy the newest trend in High Performance Buildings

New England Real Estate Journal reported that ZNE seems to be trending throughout Massachusetts and across North America. ZNE buildings currently contribute to a small fraction of all green buildings, but if you have sat through a presentation or read an industry article lately, you know the market is changing. The article references New Buildings Institute (NBI) research. Zero Net Energy buildings as buildings with greatly reduced energy loads such that, averaged over a year, 100% of the buildings' energy use can be met with onsite renewable energy technologies. (9/5/2014) Read article

Architects, Engineers Stand to Benefit from Potential IgCC Change

ConstructionPro Network reported that a proposed change to the International Green Construction Code (IgCC) could make it considerably easier for architects and engineers to make buildings more energy efficient. Among those supporting the proposed outcome-based compliance path in IgCC is New Buildings Institute (NBI). An outcome-based compliance path would set targets for the actual energy use of a building and determine compliance through the building’s achievement of that target once in operation. (06/27/2014) Read article

Net Zero Roundtable

The push for net zero energy buildings has increased in recent years, with New Buildings Institute reporting that the number of verified net zero energy buildings or those targeting net zero energy has more than doubled in just two years, from 60 in 2012 to 160 in 2013. Metal Architecture spoke to some people in the architecture and construction industries to learn more about their thoughts on net zero energy buildings. Ralph DinNola, Executive Director, is interviewed in this article. (6/2/2014) Read article

How deep is the net-zero water hole?

The net-zero energy concept has been slowly gaining traction in the North American construction industry. Another concept that goes hand-in-hand with net-zero energy is net-zero water. The Daily Commercial News reported that a recent study was done in Washington, D.C. by NBI, International Living Future Institute, and Skanska’s commercial development arm. The purpose of the study was to forecast how much extra it would cost a project owner to upgrade a building from LEED Platinum to net-zero energy, net-zero water and Living Building certification.(5/8/2014) Read article

Design Shifts To Performance

Right now in the building industry it feels like there is a huge leap project teams and building owners are trying to make from targeting design improvements, beyond energy codes and standards, to targeting real performance and measurements. Neil Bulger, a Professional Engineer with Integral Group, writes in his blog and mentions NBI’s work. (4/3/2014) Read more

Industry Proposes Innovative Method for Implementing Green Construction Code

An “Outcome-based Pathway,” was submitted as a proposed code change to the International Green Construction Code (IgCC). It appears in the monograph of IgCC proposed changes that the International Code Council released March 15, 2014 for public review. This pathway was developed as a result of representatives and organizations coming together under the leadership of the National Institute of Building Sciences. Organizations include NBI, Institute for Market Transformation and Colorado Chapter of the International Code Council. (3/18/2014) Read article

Zero-Energy Revolution Will Happen

Ralph DiNola, Executive Director, spoke at MIPIM, the leading international real estate event for property professionals. His presentations were "Getting to zero today: how zero net energy buildings will define the next decade of development" and "Retrofit strategy and smart buildings: towards high-performance buildings". The event, in it's 25th year, took place March 11-14 in France. (3/12/2014) Read article

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