Building owners are becoming more interested in demand response (DR) programs, according to a new report from Pike Research.
The number of commercial facilities participating in DR programs worldwide will rise from about 564,000 in 2012 to more than 1.4 million sites by 2018, finds the report “Demand Response for Commercial Buildings.”
Although North America leads with market share of about 37 percent in terms of the number of commercial buildings participating in DR, Asia Pacific is not far behind at almost 34 percent market share. In 2012, the region accounts for more than 190,000 commercial buildings that are enabled for DR. Asia Pacific’s comparatively fast economic growth, followed by a building boom in both the commercial and industrial sectors, is expected to fuel the growth of DR among commercial customers in this region. South Korea, which embarked on DR over a decade ago, is seeing particularly strong growth in commercial DR.
One of the most important drivers is automated DR (ADR) and open standards through OpenADR, which makes it easier for building owners and facility managers to participate in DR. Although the cost of retrofitting a building for ADR can be significant, it has become more affordable during recent years. ADR will become especially critical in enabling commercial customers to participate in more sophisticated DR programs, such as dynamic pricing and ancillary services.
The US Green Building Council recently initiated a LEED Demand Response Pilot Credit program to encourage DR participation by allowing building owners to earn additional LEED credits if they implement semi or fully automated DR, and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory is advancing the OpenADR standard.