Plug Loads Shouldn’t Be Ignored, Says Study
A study on virtual energy assessments conducted with nine Boston buildings found that plug loads represent a significant portion of energy use in commercial buildings and that tenant engagement and plug load reductions are currently under-incentivized by utilities and existing energy efficiency programs.
The study “Virtual Energy Assessments: An Emerging Technology to Understand Building Energy Use and Opportunities,” was conducted by the Boston-based, non-profit A Better City (ABC) with funding from the Barr Foundation. ABC partnered with Retroficiency, a Boston-based remote energy auditing company for the pilot.
Nine properties, totaling more than 5.1 million square feet were audited as part of the pilot. This included six office properties and three hotels. The virtual energy assessment provided a breakdown of energy use for each property. The breakdown included kWh, kBtu, and steam data. Lighting and plug loads made up the majority of electricity consumption for both property types.
Besides that discovery that plug loads are a ripe area for energy savings, the virtual energy assessment results for the nine buildings identified the potential for $1,431,487 in annual savings from energy efficiency interventions. Several buildings in the pilot program had invested heavily in energy efficiency prior to the virtual audit; therefore, savings identified for these buildings were quite small, with the best performing property having no identified savings opportunities. Retroficiency identified significant savings potential in other buildings that had not yet pursued energy conservation as intensely. The highest identified annual cost savings for any building was $765,169. The average annual savings for the entire portfolio was $178,935.90.
Why bring buildings online? What information can operations teams glean from real-time data that they can’t just get from the monthly data provided by utility companies? Click to learn more.
- Existing Building Technologies Combine for Increased Savings
- Best Practices in Electricity Procurement
- 2014 Environmental Leader Product and Project Awards
- Energy Financing Report
- Unlocking the Value of Energy & Operational Data
- Improve Your Company's Environment and Energy Performance
- Combined Heat and Power
- Smart Companies Utilize Integrated Energy Solutions
- 2013-2014 Winter Polar Vortex
- How "Fixed" is the Fixed Price Product?
- Cut Costs and Improve Facility Operations with Energy Data
- Energy Procurement Strategies for Winter 2014 and 2015
- Energy Efficiency Requires Engineering Efficiency
- Integrated Building Optimization: A Crucial Convergence of Demand-side and Supply-Side Energy Management Strategies
- Driving Productivity and Profit with Industrial Energy Management