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Energy Newsbriefs Blog

This current awareness service is prepared by the WSU Energy Program Library with funding from the U.S. Department of Energy State Energy Program. This information is provided for energy professionals and interested members of the public to highlight recent energy-related news, articles, and reports that discuss energy efficiency, energy conservation, and renewable sources of energy in engineering and policy circles.


Category: Buildings


Energy Optimization In Existing Buildings

Engineered Systems, Mar. 2015, by Mohamed Abaza.

"The importance of focusing on energy optimization in existing buildings is crucial to reducing energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. In the U.S., existing buildings represent 85-90% of entire building stock (75+ billion sq ft). Buildings are responsible for an estimated 40% of U.S. primary energy use, 72% of electricity consumption, 39% of carbon emissions, and1 13.6% of potable water consumption."

Energy Department’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory Unveils New Crowdsourcing Website for Building Technologies

U.S. Department of Energy, EERE News Release, Mar. 2, 2015.

"As part of the Energy Department's efforts to improve the energy efficiency of the nation's homes and buildings, lower energy costs, and enhance U.S. competitiveness in manufacturing, the Energy Department today launched the new Buildings Crowdsourcing Community website. Administered by the Department's Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), the new site,, will help technology innovators collect, share and evaluate input from customers and other stakeholders about next-generation building technologies."
Note: Deadline to participate is May 31, 2015.

County [King County, WA] Trials Energy Tracking Software Used by Microsoft

Energy Manager Today, Mar. 3, 2015, by Linda Hardesty.

"King County, Washington, plans to pilot the same energy-tracking software that Microsoft uses to reduce energy consumption at many of its buildings. Seattle-based design firm MacDonald-Miller will install the software at five King County facilities for the two-year pilot project. Iconics developed the software using Microsoft’s cloud-based Azure platform."

Bosch Equips Energy Smart Housing Community in Texas

Energy Manager Today, Jan. 21, 2015, by Karen Henry.

"Bosch has partnered with Taurus Investment Holdings, a Boston-based real estate development company, to equip a master-planned community outside Austin, Texas, with efficient geothermal heat pumps, hot water systems and Energy Star rated kitchen appliances. The new community, called Whisper Valley, will eventually include 7,500 net zero ready single and multi-family homes and apartments, plus more than 2 million square feet of retail and office space across 2,062 acres."

The Impact of Energy Efficient Design and Construction on LIHTC Housing in Virginia

Report to Housing Virginia by the Virginia Center for Housing Research at Virginia Tech, Feb. 10, 2015.

"The purpose of this report is to identify and verify possible benefits of the shift in housing policy by the Virginia Housing development Authority (VHDA) to encourage energy efficiency (EE) in the affordable rental stock in Virginia through the LIHTC [Low-Income Housing Tax Credits] program. The research addresses key issues related to energy efficiency and affordable housing through a rigorous measurement of economic impacts for low-income residents, distinguishing the effects of design, construction, technologies and behavior per unit."

Reducing Daytime Energy Costs With Nighttime Activity

Business Energy, Jan. 2015, by William Atkinson.

"Large systems solutions for cooling and heating."

How ASHRAE Standard 90.1 Contributes to Integrated Design

Consulting-Specifying Engineer, Feb. 2015, by Rodney V. Oathout, and Ruairi Barnwell.

"ASHRAE Standard 90.1 is under continuous maintenance. This article focuses on the recent evolution of this standard, the impact on energy and performance, the design process, and how human interaction can improve energy efficiency."

FEMP Releases Top 20 List of Promising Technologies

FEMP Digest, U.S. Department of Energy, Feb. 9, 2015.

"The Federal Energy Management Program’s [FEMP's] Promising Technologies List provides information about promising new and underutilized energy-saving technologies that are commercially available for deployment in the federal and commercial building sectors. The list includes twenty technologies with the largest potential for cost-effective energy savings if deployed throughout the federal sector, and previews a new FEMP database scheduled to go live in fall 2015."

Adopting a Whole Building Systems Approach to Energy Efficiency

Business Energy, Dec. 2014, by Drake Erbe, Richard Lord, and Robert Wilkins.

"A new approach is needed to advance energy efficiency in buildings. A multitude of trends and innovations offer new opportunities for progress increasingly converging on the prospect of a new basic concept: whole building systems."

Four Tips on LEED O+M Can Ease Way to Certification

Building Operating Management, Dec. 2014, by Pete Choquette.

"Certification under programs like the LEED Operations and Maintenance (LEED O+M) rating system has become important as designers, owners and facility managers have begun focusing more closely on the energy and environmental impacts of their buildings. Four tips, including a look at the LEED O+M credits structure, can ease the way to LEED certification."


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