Are you ready to stop wasting and start saving? Register today for the U.S Environmental Protection Agency’s 2013 ENERGY STAR National Building Competition! It’s a fun way to add fuel to your energy management program and get everyone in your organization excited to save. WHEN BUILDINGS COMPETE, EVERYONE WINS EPA’s ENERGY STAR National Building Competition pits buildings from across the nation against each other in a battle to see who can trim their energy waste the most. You’ll save money on your energy bills and get ready-to-use materials from EPA to promote your wins. And your energysaving efforts reduce greenhouse gas emissions, resulting in a cleaner, healthier environment for the rest of us.
TENANTS CAN COMPETE, TOO
NEW! This year, building owners and managers aren’t the only ones that can compete. For the first time ever, EPA is inviting tenants to participate! So whether you lease a whole building or just part of one, you can join in the battle and work off your waste with help from ENERGY STAR.
ALL YOU NEED IS 2012 AND 2013 DATA
To register, you’ll submit your 2012 energy use information to EPA during the application period. Then you’ll work to improve efficiency during 2013 and report your savings at the midpoint and final weigh-ins. The competitor that reduces its energy use the most on a percentage basis will be recognized by EPA as the winner.
GET SOME WELL-DESERVED RECOGNITION
Whether you're a building owner, manager, tenant, or communications superstar, EPA has new ways for you to win. This year, EPA will recognize:
The Biggest Energy Loser. This is the building or space that reduces its energy use the most on a percentage basis over the course of the competition.
MVP – Most Valuable Participant. Teams competing for MVP fill out a short communications scorecard during midpoint and final weigh-ins. The building with the highest combined score of energy use reductions and communications activities wins MVP!
Top Tenant. This is the tenant that reduces its energy use the most on a percentage basis over the course of the competition. 20% Reduction. And lastly, back by popular demand, any building or space that reduces its energy use by at least a 20% will have the opportunity to get recognition.
I’M IN! HOW DO I SIGN UP?
Applying is easier than ever. Visit energystar.gov/BattleOfTheBuildings for step-by-step instructions on how to sign up one, several, or all of the buildings in your portfolio using a Portfolio Manager report.
Last week, Virginia Mason was recognized with the 2013 “Partner for Change, with Distinction” Award by Practice Greenhealth, the nation’s leading health care membership community that empowers its members to increase their efficiencies and environmental stewardship while improving patient safety and care.
The Partner for Change, with Distinction Award recognizes health care facilities that have achieved improvements in overall sustainability programming in areas such as mercury elimination, waste reduction, energy and natural resource reduction, recycling and source reduction programs – above and beyond the Partner for Change basic criteria. This includes at least 20 percent recycling, generating 10 percent or less regulated medical waste, a more extensive sustainability program, and enhanced programs covering a wider range of areas such as food, energy, water and chemical minimization. The award winner must also show leadership in the local community and in the health care sector. “Virginia Mason was selected as an award winner ‘with distinction’ because they have demonstrated achievements far beyond the guidelines for the Partner for Change Award,” said Laura Wenger, RN, executive director, Practice Greenhealth. “Virginia Mason is truly demonstrating leadership for the future of health care.” VM’s EnviroMason program is gaining national recognition for its sustainability work, including:
• First hospital in the Pacific Northwest to recycle and compost food waste and materials used in the hospital cafeteria and patient rooms, completely eliminating garbage cans and Styrofoam use.
• Reduced kitchen garbage waste by 75 percent and reduced water use by 72 percent.
• Reduced the volume of landfill waste from the cafeteria by more than five tons annually.
• A good portion of the food and nutrition purchases are sustainable and use local food products, including local, humanely raised meat and sustainable seafood approved by Seafood Watch.
• First hospital in the region to implement a recycling program in its operating rooms.
• The only multi-facility certified health care organization in the Energy Star program. “We are proud to be cited as a leader in developing and implementing programs that protect our environment and the health of our patients, staff and community, ”said Sarah Patterson, executive vice president and chief operating officer.
“The success of our EnviroMason program is directly attributed to our staff. Their dedication to sustainable solutions has made our environment better, allowing us to commit more of our resources toward the direct care of patients.”
To read the rest of the Virginia Mason Newsletter CLICK HERE
Enthusiasm for water and energy data collection for commercial and residential buildings has been growing strong across the U.S. in major cities such as Austin, New York, Washington D.C. and San Francisco. It’s no surprise to learn that Earth-friendly Seattle is ahead of the game when it comes to tracking its buildings; reports show that the city is receiving data for a whopping 87% of its commercial and multi-residential buildings over 50,000 square feet, which totals to 1,160 individual properties covering over 200 million square feet of the city.
But that’s not all. New cities are hopping on the data collection bandwagon, most recently Minneapolis – the first city in the Midwest to adopt rules for energy benchmarking and disclosure. Other cities who already have a green reputation, such as Boston, are upping their game to adopt this beneficial practice in an effort to create even healthier and more prosperous urban conditions. With the President himself expressing support for cutting energy use by constructing more energy efficient buildings at last week’s State of the Union address, water and energy data collection is finally receiving the attention and consideration it deserves.
For more information CLICK HERE
BG: It started about three years ago. I was working as a sustainability specialist at ZGF Architects. I was working at the Seattle office. Bob Zimmerman, the managing partner of the office, had just come back from a conference in Chicago and was telling me about this de-carbonization study that Adrian Smith and Gordon Gill had worked on. Bob said: “It sounds fascinating. I’m surprised that Seattle hasn’t undertaken something like that.” I took that little nugget back to my desk and was thinking it over. It sounded like a great idea. But I thought that if we wanted to do something like that here, it seemed that a study was not the right approach. So I made this map. I started with Seattle’s steam distribution map. We’ve got a small district steam utility here in downtown. They were in the process of building a biomass boiler that would reduce the carbon footprint of their entire operations by 50 percent, and the heating-related carbon footprint of the two hundred buildings attached to them by half as well. There was other great stuff going on, too. There were a number of large building owners undertaking portfolio-wide certification, putting together important tenant engagement programs. The city was about to pass a disclosure ordinance, requiring building owners to benchmark their properties and disclose some of the data to the city. All of this stuff was happening, but it was happening somewhat siloed. So I took their map, put on the ten largest property owners and managers that I knew downtown, who were all doing cool things, and went to a few people in the city, and other architects and engineers, and said, “Look, this is what they’re doing in Chicago. They’re doing a study. But if we did something like this here, and instead of doing a study, invited these people on this map in, we would cover a lot of downtown. We could get all of these large entities measuring their progress the same way, united around one set of goals.” I told them, “You’ll get a lot farther together than you would on your own.” They’d learn a lot from each other. They wouldn’t be duplicating efforts. Hopefully, they’d be generating more work for everybody in the city. People liked the idea.
BG: We were talking about uniting them around one common set of goals. Right around that time, Ed and the folks at 2030 expanded the 2030 Challenge to something they called the 2030 Challenge for Planning. It was a nice, clean comprehensive set of performance goals. It wasn’t too big. It doesn’t get into waste, urban agriculture—all those other things that I think are incredibly important. I’ve worked on designs for vertical farms in the past. That stuff is great, but it’s very hard to measure. So the 2030 Challenge is three sets of goals that are still difficult but we can get actual data and measure them. We told them: “We can take an existing standard and apply it collaboratively to a downtown core for the first time.” People thought the idea was exciting. The property owners liked talking to each other, face to face, about what they were doing in this arena, because they didn’t have a forum. We met every two weeks through all of 2010, trying to figure out how to put this organization together, and it grew and grew, mostly by word of mouth. We won a $450,000 three-year grant from the EPA in the fall of 2010. We’ve since won a number of other grants.
BG: Get more people into the district and bring more services to entice them to reduce the energy used in their buildings. We’ve got a whole process that we call Access Target Deliver, that helps them do that. We’ve got case studies on member buildings that have already reached the 2030 goals. We’ve got some high performers that did it on their own, within the realities of the market.
BG: It sounds easier and means that there’s ways to make progress relatively easily. But in a way, it cuts both ways. Because energy costs here are about the lowest in the country, in terms of electricity. We pay less than a third of what New York City pays. There are also no peak demand charges. It’s hard to make energy efficiency projects pencil out here, whereas you can do all sorts of crazy things in New York that pencil out, because of how expensive power is. We feel like if we can make it work here, in a market of low energy costs, it should be able to work in other places.
Seattle City Light has issued a request for proposals from building owners who want to participate in a three-year pilot program that will pay them for the energy they save.
City Light wants three commercial office buildings to test the Pay-for-Performance program. Participants will get three cents for every kilowatt-hour of energy saved each year, rather than an upfront payment for expected energy savings.
Information about the RFP is online at http://tiny.cc/SeattleRFP. Proposals are due Jan. 15.
The RFP encourages respondents to be innovative and tailor approaches to suit their business.
City Light said in a press release that business and energy experts say they can identify equipment, facilities and operational changes that will save more energy than under the utility's current incentive programs. Bigger rebates based on actual performance will encourage businesses to make investments in energy efficiency.
“This approach gives businesses flexibility to pursue electricity savings opportunities that will be of most benefit to their businesses,” Superintendent Jorge Carrasco said. “It also reduces risk for the utility, since we only will be paying for actual conservation savings realized, and all of our customers benefit from the lowest cost energy available — conservation.”
Participants will monitor their energy savings and report on a monthly and annual basis. Savings can come from behavioral changes, capital projects, operations and maintenance.
Virginia Mason Medical Center is one of only 125 health care organizations in the nation to receive the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) ENERGY STAR certification for 2012.
The certification recognizes that five VM facilities in the downtown campus — the Lindeman Pavilion, the Health Resources Building, Central Pavilion, Jones Pavilion and Buck Pavilion — cost measurably less to operate while improving the quality of our environment, thanks to successful implementation of prudent energy management strategies. Buildings that earn the EPA's ENERGY STAR certification use an average of 35 percent less energy than typical buildings and also release 35 percent less carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.
Of the three health care organizations in Washington state that are ENERGY STAR certified, VM is the only organization to receive certification for multiple buildings.
Only 125 health care systems in the nation have earned a place on the ENERGY STAR roster. Virginia Mason is the only health care provider in the Seattle area to earn ENERGY STAR certification, one of only three in Washington and the only health care provider in the state to have multiple buildings certified.
The push for energy efficiency is part of Virginia Mason's award-winning EnviroMason environmental stewardship initiative, a comprehensive sustainability program that has pioneered eco-friendly business practices in health care. The ENERGY STAR certification is the culmination of an effort that began in 1999 to retrofit and upgrade buildings with new energy efficient technologies that help reduce energy use and promote a cleaner environment, such as automated building system controls, hot water flow restrictors, lighting retrofits and steam valve upgrades.
The VM team contributed to successful certification by using less energy and employing VM Production System tools to help meet the certification requirements.
"This achievement exemplifies what our EnviroMason initiative is all about," said Sarah Patterson, executive vice president and chief operating officer. "We made a commitment when we launched EnviroMason several years ago that our vision to be the Quality Leader and transform health care extends to the environment. We want to be the best stewards of our resources and contribute to our community's sustainability."
Across America, buildings consume more energy than any other source. In many cases, energy consumption is the determining factor of financial performance of a building. But, according to a McKinsey &Co. Report, the Large Commercial Building Sector can cost-effectively reduce its energy use by 28%. Energy-efficient buildings create significantly greater net income for owners because they are more cost efficient for tenants and have a greater marketing advantage.
A recent analysis by the Institute for Market Transformation in Washington, D.C. and the Political Economy Research Institute at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst found that savings in energy costs for building owners, consumers, and businesses could reach more than $18 billion by 2020. The analysis also predicted more than $7.8 billion in private investment in energy efficiency programs and technology through 2020, yielding $3 to $4 in cost savings for every dollar invested. New buildings will be a small part of these savings since 90% of the buildings operating in 2020 are already built.
Energy Efficiency in Seattle Seattle has a global reputation for being a great place to live, work and do business. Beautiful surroundings, job opportunities, low utility rates and an educated workforce all contribute to this reputation. Investing in the energy efficiency of our buildings is a cost effective way to enhance this reputation. It will help make our businesses more competitive, keep our utility rates low, provide job opportunities in the construction and technical energy management fields, protect our pristine environment and position us as a leader in developing the clean economies of the future. Recently, the Washington Athletic Club (WAC) finished a comprehensive energy efficiency project which resulted in a 25 percent reduction in total energy use, saving about $222,000 a year on utility costs. The WAC used $1 million in low-interest third party financing to fund upgrades to its 40-year-old HVAC system, replace a 20-year-old control system, install more efficient kitchen hood fans and wrap steam pipes. An energy service agreement runs over a four year period with payments on their monthly utility bill, and after that, all future savings will directly benefit the WAC.
“It seems foolish to pass the opportunity up”
—Dennis Williams, Building Operations Manager,
Washington Athletic Club
Benefits to Your Organization
- Saving up to 40% on your utilities from day 1
- Improved tenant experience, attraction and retention – increased comfort, better lighting, and the prestige of working in a high performance building
- Mitigate risks of increased utility rates
- Lower operating & maintenance expenses
- Increase the market value of your property
- Develop a reputation for corporate citizenship and leadership in the community
How can it work for my organization?
Improving the energy efficiency of your building(s) can be confusing and fraught with risk. Now improving the energy efficiency of your buildings easier than ever.
- An Energy Services Company (ESCO) can put the entire program together for you. Outsourcing energy management to the experts can enhance your bottom line.
- Rebates and Incentives to promote a clean environment, reduce carbon emissions, stabilize our electric rates and promote economic develop are available through utility, government and private programs.
- Financing is available to spread the cost over time in order to align with the energy savings. And, with available third party financing there’s no out of pocket expense to your organization.
- Energy Service Agreements can bring all of these elements together in a risk-free package that insures energy savings and moves the project costs to operating rather than capital expenses.
- Join the Seattle 2030 District, an interdisciplinary public-private collaborative creating a groundbreaking, high-performance building district in downtown Seattle. The Seattle 2030 District develops realistic, measurable, and innovative strategies to assist district property owners, managers, and tenants in meeting aggressive goals that reduce environmental impacts of facility construction and operations. To get assistance from the Seattle 2030 District or to become a member, visit here or contact Brian Geller, Executive Director, at (206) 877-2400, or email email@example.com.
- Seattle City Light and Puget Sound Energy offer technical support and incentives for commercial buildings.
- Building Operator Certification (BOC), The Northwest Energy Efficiency Council (NEEC) is a non-profit tradeassociation of the energy efficiency industry. NEEC administers the national BOC® program through a network of licensed providers who train building technicians in BOC best practices. Visit www.theboc.info for more information.
- Energy Benchmarking and Reporting – The Energy Benchmarking and Reporting Ordinance requires non-residential and multifamily building owners in Seattle to conduct annual energy performance tracking through the EPA’s Portfolio Manager, a free and secure online tool. The Energy Benchmarking and Reporting Program of the Office of Sustainability and Environment, City of Seattle offers compliance assistance, firstname.lastname@example.org, 206-727-8484.
For here more information. Click here to see the video "No Brainer - Why Energy Efficiency Is Good For All Of Seattle"
The Seattle 2030 District is now managing Community Power Works for Large Commercial buildings in Seattle. This RFP makes a $500,000 pool of in grant funding available to Seattle 2030 District Property Owner and Property Manager members on a first-come/first-serve basis. Please contact Brian Geller at The Seattle 2030 District if you have questions!
UPDATE - The Deadline for completing work eligible for Community Power Works funding has been extended to August 31st, 2013. The total amount of money available to Seattle 2030 District members has been increased to $1 Million, so please bring your projects forward!
We've also partnered with Seattle 2030 District, a public/private partnership of more than 60 members, including the City of Seattle, King County, 24 major property owners and managers, Architecture 2030, and numerous professional and community stakeholders. Their goal is a 50% reduction in the amount of energy use, water consumption and CO2 emissions for over 90 million square feet of downtown Seattle real estate - all by 2030.
The Seattle building information and our partnership with Seattle 2030 will help you grow your network, target new business, and make smarter, faster real estate decisions. Next up, we head south for some BBQ and more buildings!
- The HB Team
For more information vistit http://bit.ly/Nl2aWh