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Energy Efficiency

Benchmarking Goes Through Growing Pains

Linda Hardesty

There are 10 cities and one county in the United States that require energy benchmarking: Austin, Boston, Chicago, Minneapolis, New York City, Philadelphia, Seattle, San Francisco, Washington, DC, Cambridge, Mass., and Montgomery County, Md. In its first year of private sector benchmarking, New York City had to scrub nearly 25 percent of all property submissions   …Continue Reading


Smart Sensor Could Cut Building Energy Consumption by 30%

Karen Henry

Researchers at the US Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) are developing a low-cost wireless sensor that could make regulating comfort in small commercial buildings more efficient and less expensive. Studies indicate that advanced sensors and controls have the potential to reduce the energy consumption of buildings by 20–30 percent. Collecting data such   …Continue Reading


Illinois Community Solar Plan Proposed

Karen Henry

The Citizens Utility Board (CUB) and the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) have proposed Illinois’ first-ever Community Solar plan, which would allow entire neighborhoods to enjoy the financial benefits of renewable energy. Currently, Illinois utility customers with rooftop solar panels can receive compensation credits on their electric bills by sending excess renewable energy back to the power grid—a   …Continue Reading


County Trials Energy Tracking Software Used by Microsoft

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. The energy tracking software will provide   …Continue Reading


Voluntary Agreement Reduces Energy Consumption of TV Set-Top Boxes

Karen Henry

Energy efficiency advocates, set-top box (STB) manufacturers, service providers and the federal government have voluntarily agreed to improve energy efficiency of STBs, generally based on the Energy Star program’s product specifications, the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) reports. About 85 percent of US households have at least one STB that delivers subscription-based television service by cable,   …Continue Reading


Will the Full Benefits of the Incandescent Bulb Ban Ever Kick In?

Karen Henry

It has been more than a year since the final phase of the incandescent light bulb ban went into effect. As of January 1, 2014, 40- and 60-watt tungsten filament incandescent light bulbs can no longer be manufactured in the United States because they do not meet federal energy efficiency standards. The phase out began   …Continue Reading


Data Centers Don’t Have to Choose between Uptime and Efficiency

Robert Bunger

A 2014 report from the International Energy Agency concluded that energy efficiency investments could potentially create total returns of $18 trillion worldwide. This staggering number – which is roughly the equivalent of all of North America’s economies combined – truly shows the value in adopting energy efficient measures across the consumer and business landscape. Taking   …Continue Reading


Lighting Retrofit Saves Illinois College $35K

Karen Henry

North Central College in Naperville, Ill., has completed a $200,000 lighting retrofit in its residence hall/recreation center and activities center. The college replaced metal halide, fluorescent and incandescent lighting fixtures in these facilities with LED lighting. The new fixtures will reduce annual energy consumption by an estimated 448,271 kWh and save the college an estimated   …Continue Reading


OSI Expands Energy Management to 5 Facilities

Linda Hardesty

Global meat processing company OSI has hired Cascade Energy to deepen OSI’s energy efficiency efforts and expand its single-facility pilot program into five additional plants. In 2013, Cascade Energy and OSI launched a pilot program at OSI’s Oakland, Iowa, facility that involved: Setting up an energy measurement, tracking, benchmarking, and reporting system. Performing a tune   …Continue Reading


Data Center Owner Offers Customers Renewable Energy Option

Karen Henry

IO has announced a renewable energy program for its data center customers. Under an agreement with Arizona Public Service (APS), IO’s Arizona data center customers can purchase 100 percent renewable energy for their data center operations. Through this agreement, customers can opt in to receive access to clean power generated by wind and solar plants   …Continue Reading