WASHINGTON - In partnership with several states and utilities, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced a new pilot program designed to further improve commercial building energy efficiency. EPA said Building Performance with Energy Star will help utilities and state energy efficiency programs achieve increased energy savings by strategically pursuing whole building energy improvements with business customers. The pilot program is being launched with Energy Star partners Com Ed, MidAmerican, National Grid, the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities, Pacific Gas & Electric, Southern California Edison, and Wisconsin Focus on Energy.

Modeled after the Home Performance with Energy Star program, EPA said that Building Performance with Energy Star will provide a framework for regional energy efficiency programs to align their financial incentives and technical assistance with a comprehensive approach to building upgrades. Building Performance with Energy Star includes several key elements to help states and utilities promote improved energy efficiency. These elements include measuring energy use with EPA’s online energy measurement and tracking tool, Portfolio Manager, to score building performance; approaching energy efficiency opportunities through whole building assessments; and creating a robust delivery network for whole building efficiency services.

Utilities and states that partner with EPA will use Building Performance with Energy Star to help business customers strategically plan and implement energy efficiency improvements over time - for example, starting with quick-payback measures that can create revenue to fund capital upgrades in the future. The program can also be used to help customers identify buildings with the most opportunities for improvement and prioritize technical assistance and incentives for projects that will deliver the largest energy savings.

For more information, visit www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=reps.pt_reps.

Publication date:05/31/2010