WASHINGTON - The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) has released two new resources on commercial building energy performance: a Web site that catalogs building performance resources and a report on commercial building retrofit programs. According to ACEEE, these resources provide information on opportunities to improve the energy efficiency, comfort, and productivity of the existing commercial building stock.

The "Commercial Building Performance Resources" Web site can be accessed at http://aceee.org/buildingperformance/. The report, "Comprehensive Commercial Retrofit Programs: A Review of Activity and Opportunities," can be downloaded for free at http://aceee.org/pubs/A052.htm.

"The thousands of commercial buildings in the U.S. present a tremendous opportunity for energy savings along with improved financial returns for building owners," said Jennifer Thorne Amann, senior associate in ACEEE's Buildings Program and lead developer of the Web site and report. "ACEEE developed these resources to help the energy efficiency community deliver energy savings and improved building performance to owners and occupants across the country."

Good building operations and maintenance (O&M) practices can reduce commercial building energy use by 5 to 10 percent or more in many cases, says ACEEE. The new Web site is designed to serve as an electronic library of building performance program materials, case studies, research reports, technical resources, and contacts. Additional material is to be added to the site in the coming weeks and new resources will be posted on an ongoing basis.

While the Web site largely focuses on building O&M, equipment retrofits are also an important source of energy savings, ACEEE notes. The new report, "Comprehensive Commercial Retrofit Programs: A Review of Activity and Opportunities," covers efforts to capture savings from comprehensive retrofits that address the full range of retrofit opportunities in individual buildings as well as interactive effects among system components or building systems. Comprehensive retrofits can reduce energy use by 15 to 40 percent, states ACEEE. The report includes a review of experience to date and recommendations to improve the use and effectiveness of these programs.

"Efforts to improve whole building performance through better O&M practices and comprehensive retrofits continue to evolve. We feel it is important to disseminate program resources and the valuable lessons learned so far to maximize their impact," said Steven Nadel, ACEEE's executive director.

Publication date: 06/06/2005