ASHRAE to Offer Free Building Energy Disclosure Session at AHR Expo

Disclosure requirements and transparency through programs, such as fuel efficiency in automobiles and calorie labeling in restaurants, have been shown to shift producer and consumer behavior.

The same principles are also being applied to building energy use, where energy use reporting and open data impact market behavior and drive energy efficiency. The implications of the growing trend in disclosure policies are examined in a free session offered by ASHRAE at the 2014 AHR Expo.

ASHRAE’s 2014 Winter Conference takes place Jan. 18-22, 2014, New York. Held in conjunction with the 2014 Winter Conference is the International Air-Conditioning, Heating, Refrigerating Exposition, Jan. 21-23, 2014.

ASHRAE’s AHR Expo Session, “Trends in Building Energy Disclosure: Increasing Energy Efficiency without Retrofits,” takes place from 3-4 p.m., Tuesday, Jan. 21, in the South Concourse, second level. No badge or ticked required. Attendees will earn 1 NY PDH, 1 AIA Learning Unit and 1 LEED AP credit.

Energy disclosure requirements, now required in seven U.S. cities and numerous European Union countries, require periodic reporting of energy consumption for certain buildings.

“The speakers will tackle the issue of building energy use on the large scale and what major cities are doing about it,” says Mike Eardley, P.E., seminar chair. “A cost effective solution is not major construction and new efficient equipment, but tuning up existing HVAC&R systems and verifying they are operating correctly. Occupant behavior also has a major impact. Attendees will learn the energy penalties associated with these issues. We also will discuss how city level energy disclosure requirements take a necessary first step in communicating energy use information in buildings so that corrective action can be taken.”

The seminar presents a new energy benchmarking model to support comparative energy performance evaluation across commercial buildings.

The study analyzes patterns of energy consumption across New York City buildings and models the determinants of building energy efficiency to establish a robust model for normalization across multiple characteristics. Energy efficiency has traditionally been achieved through physical retrofits. An alternative approach is presented that harnesses data from smart meters in an eco-informatic system and provides feedback to building occupants on their energy consumption.

Eardley said use of eco-informatic/eco-feedback systems offer a mechanism to close the feedback loop between occupants and energy consumption. Reductions of 5 to 15 percent have been noted with such systems.

“Most importantly, the use of such systems has been shown to be extremely cost effective in comparison with other energy efficiency initiatives,” he said.

Presentations are:

  • “Building a Better Benchmark: Lessons from New York City’s Local Law 84 Energy Disclosure Data,” Constantine Kontokosta, Ph.D., P.E., NYU Center for the Sustainable Built Environment, New York, N.Y.
  • “Encouraging Energy Efficient Behavior of Building Occupants through Contextualized Feedback and Social Network Dynamics,” Rishee Jain, Ph.D., NYU Center for Urban Science and Progress, Brooklyn, N.Y.

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