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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.

 


Our New Analysis Finds Energy Efficiency is the 3rd Largest Resource In the US Electric Power Sector

ACEEE Blog, Aug. 19, 2016, by Maggie Molina.
http://aceee.org/blog/2016/08/our-new-analysis-finds-energy

"Have you ever described efficiency as an energy resource and gotten a quizzical look in return? We have, even though utility system planners have been using energy efficiency for decades to make sure that power for their customers is both reliable and affordable. For those of us who have been in the energy efficiency industry for years, or even decades, we sometimes take for granted that others will understand what we mean. But we must not."

Proving its Long-Term Mettle: Longevity, Whole-Building LCAs, and Stainless Steel

The Construction Specifier, Aug. 2016, by Catherine Houska.
http://www.constructionspecifier.com/proving-its-long-term-mettle-longevity-whole-building-lcas-and-stainless-steel/

"Whether the project is a new building or major renovation, sustainability is an increasingly important factor in decision-making. Whole-building life cycle assessment (LCA) makes it possible to look at all phases of a building, from material extraction through construction to decommissioning and, when possible, recycling into a ‘new’ useful material. When it comes to comparing materials, increasingly available data, an ASTM standard procedure, and LCA analysis software are helping design professionals make better choices to reduce the building’s carbon footprint."

Mobile Homes Move Toward Efficiency

ACEEE Blog, Aug. 3, 2016, by Lowell Ungar.
http://aceee.org/blog/2016/08/mobile-homes-move-toward-efficiency

"Do you know which government in the United States is the biggest laggard on energy codes for homes? The federal government. But that’s about to change. -- Manufactured homes and the “HUD Code”."

How Increasing Efficiency Can Stem Climate Change Impacts On the Energy-Water Nexus

ACEEE Blog, Aug. 5, 2016, David Ribeiro.
http://aceee.org/blog/2016/08/how-increasing-efficiency-can-stem

"In this post, we explore the roles of energy efficiency and water efficiency in moderating some of the adverse impacts of climate change that we covered in the prior post."

zEPI FAQ: Zero Energy Performance Index

New Buildings Institute, July 2016.
http://newbuildings.org/code_policy/zepi/

"The 2015 International Green Construction Code (IgCC) includes many progressive measures that will improve the energy performance of buildings. One important provision describes the Zero Energy Performance Index (zEPI), which provides a scale for measuring commercial building energy performance. zEPI represents a fundamental shift in measurement of building efficiency as it sets energy targets for actual energy consumption rather than using a predictive energy model of building energy performance to calculate a “percent better than code” metric. zEPI sets an energy use intensity (EUI) target for building type and is adjusted for climate. It is also the measure by which a building’s energy efficiency is calculated once operational and occupied based on measured energy use data."

How Net-Zero Buildings Impact the Grid

GreenBiz, Aug. 8, 2016, by Paul Lee.
https://www.greenbiz.com/article/how-net-zero-buildings-impact-grid

"Buildings account for nearly 40 percent of U.S. carbon emissions (PDF). This means that low emission buildings must be part of our clean sustainable future. Initiatives such as Architecture 2030 and California’s Title 24 are not only helping to pave the way by creating a general framework for sustainable buildings but also pushing the boundary with Net Zero Buildings (NZBs) or Zero Energy Buildings (ZEBs) that aim to almost completely offset a building’s adverse climate change impacts. These buildings will produce just as much energy as they consume and will be commonplace by 2020 and 2030."

Next Generation Standards: How the National Energy Efficiency Standards Program Can Continue to Drive Energy, Economic, and Environmental Benefits

ACEEE, Aug. 4, 2016, by Andrew deLaski, Joanna Mauer, et. al.
http://aceee.org/sites/default/files/publications/researchreports/a1604.pdf

"Appliance, equipment, and lighting standards have been among the most effective energy efficiency policies, delivering increased savings over multiple rounds of standards for many products. But how much more can be accomplished? What is the potential for additional savings from future standards, specifically for the presidential administration that begins in 2017? This report estimates the savings opportunities from updates to existing standards. We also offer five strategic recommendations for improving the national standards program and further increasing savings."

The Future of Distributed Generation

Rural Electric Magazine, Aug. 2016, by Reed Karaim.
http://remagazine.coop/future-of-distributed-generation/

"Electric cooperatives have a long history of integrating distributed generation (DG) sources. But if you want a glimpse of the future of DG, you’ll find it in the wooded hills and valleys of northern Vermont, where Vermont Electric Cooperative is already living with challenges many co-ops will eventually face."

NARUC Rate Design Manual Reignites Debate Over Cost Shift, Value of Solar

Utility Dive, Aug. 4, 2016, by Herman K. Trabish.
http://www.utilitydive.com/news/naruc-rate-design-manual-reignites-debate-over-cost-shift-value-of-solar/423586/

"Regulators around the country are refereeing heated debates between utilities and distributed resource advocates. A guidebook is in the works to help them, but general agreement on its approach masks persisting disagreements between the two camps."

Lending for Energy Efficiency Upgrades in Low- to Moderate-Income Communities: Bank of America’s Energy Efficiency Finance Program

ACEEE, July 28, 2016, by James Barrett and Brian Stickles .
http://aceee.org/sites/default/files/publications/researchreports/f1601.pdf

"In 2011, Bank of America launched its Energy Efficiency Finance Program (EEFP) to help families, businesses, and multifamily building owners in low- to moderate-income (LMI) communities increase their energy efficiency and reduce their energy bills.... Under a contract with Bank of America to evaluate this program, we [ACEEE] analyzed data supplied by the participating CDFIs and Bright Power to assess the performance of the loan portfolios as well as the efficiency investments themselves. In general, we found that the loans are performing well. "
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The Energy Newsbriefs Blog is a continuation of the weekly Energy Newsbriefs. Please bookmark this site and return frequently. Although we will not be accepting comments from within the Blog, we would be happy to hear from you by email at library@energy.wsu.edu