Heads Up: Building Energy Efficiency - Volume 3, Issue 8

Volume 3, Issue 8

Waste benchmarking has arrived!

The U.S. EPA has launched a new feature in ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager - waste benchmarking. Like energy, waste management is a cost that you can control and reduce. And as with energy, you can’t manage what you don’t measure, so the first step in reducing your facility’s waste output is to measure that output.

In Canada, the responsibility for managing and reducing waste is shared among many governmental stakeholders.

Visit Environment and Climate Change Canada’s Managing and Reducing Waste page for more information. 

For more information on this new feature, visit: ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager - Waste Benchmarking.
For training opportunities on this new feature, please visit the U.S. EPA’s training resources page.

National High Performance Building Challenge

Natural Resources Canada is pleased to announce that we will be launching a new National High Performance Building Challenge to support the Canadian buildings sector’s move toward net-zero energy performance. NRCan’s new building challenge will recognize the proponents of leading designs — builders and designers who demonstrate significant progress toward net-zero energy performance. In this way, we will help to drive the entire market toward this ideal.

NRCan is proposing to undertake this project in collaboration with leading building industry associations and/or organizations and will be putting out an official request for “Expressions of Interest” in the near future to formally solicit partnerships with appropriate organizations. We encourage interested organizations to contact us at info.services@nrcan-rncan.gc.ca for more information, and to keep an eye on HUBEE for updates on this exciting project!

Canadian Institute for Energy Training becomes sole licensee of the Dollars to $ense energy management workshops

NRCan is pleased to announce that the Canadian Institute for Energy Training (CIET) is the sole licensee of the Dollars to $ense energy management workshops in Canada.

CIET and NRCan signed the agreement on June 27, 2016, granting the five-year sole royalty-bearing license to CIET for the delivery of the workshops in Canada and non-exclusive rights to deliver the workshops in any country around the world. 

The Dollars to $ense energy management workshops have a new look and a new format. The material from the previous six standard workshops is now presented in 30 modules, which can easily be used as building blocks for organizations that wish to focus on specific topics or have limited resources. The new format is also expected to further extend the reach of the content to Canada’s northern and aboriginal communities, and to the rest of the world.

For information on booking a Dollars to $ense energy management workshop, please contact CIET by phone at 1-800-461-7618, by email at info@cietcanada.com or by visiting their website at http://cietcanada.com.

ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager key to energy efficiency success for Cape Breton Regional Municipality

“Thanks to ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager, we’re on track with 2.5 GWh in electrical savings by the end of the summer,” says Dave Brushett, Energy Manager at Cape Breton Regional Municipality (CBRM). Portfolio Manager has been a central part of an ambitious project launched by CBRM to reduce its energy costs and greenhouse gas emissions. To achieve its energy reduction goal of 15 percent over five years, the municipality partnered with Efficiency Nova Scotia to hire Brushett as the on-site Energy Manager. His focus is identifying and implementing projects to meet the energy cost reduction targets.

“We needed a tool that could demonstrate the savings achieved.” In addition, notes Brushett, the municipality pays for energy in 82 of the buildings it owns. “Portfolio Manager allows us to print detailed quarterly reports on energy savings and enables us to share data with managers in other buildings.” Moreover, the tool has brought accountability and credibility to the framework for integrating energy efficiency into the culture of the municipality.

CBRM uses Portfolio Manager to compare its buildings to similar buildings across the country, to identify poorly performing buildings, and to recognize and reward high performance buildings. “We have built up an inventory of past and future energy projects, and the tool allows us to easily keep track of these projects and ensure that we are achieving the expected results.”

Since Brushett was hired in October 2014, CBRM has developed a strategic energy management plan and implemented a comprehensive employee engagement strategy. So far, 60 projects have either been completed or are underway. One of the first projects that Brushett tackled was the municipality's largest consumer of electricity, Centre 200. The centre has had lighting retrofits and refrigeration upgrades, for annual savings of over $200,000.

“Portfolio Manager allows us to print detailed quarterly reports on energy savings and enables us to share data with managers in other buildings”

Additionally, CBRM’s Civic Centre is being recommissioned, many LED upgrades have been carried out, occupancy sensors have been installed in some buildings, heat pumps have been set up in community centres and HVAC controls have been added to the police headquarters. A major ongoing project is the repair of significant water leaks partly responsible for significant annual water losses. This project is expected to result in tremendous water savings and 1.6 GWh a year in electricity savings.

CBRM has employed students to help populate the Portfolio Manager database and is now tracking the energy performance of 82 of its buildings with the tool. Brushett notes that giving young, innovative students these types of learning opportunities is economical and provides great job experience. Hiring students also builds capacity in the growing field of sustainable buildings.

Other municipalities should consider energy benchmarking (refer to Why benchmark energy performance for the benefits) and can find solutions to start-up costs of benchmarking on NRCan’s website. Municipal decision makers can also find valuable case studies: Canadian Circle of Champions, which provide many best practices that can be adopted/adapted. Municipalities in Nova Scotia can also partner with Efficiency Nova Scotia on their path to sustainability.

For additional sources of information on this news item, please visit:

Let us know what you think

Heads Up: Building Energy Efficiency is published by Natural Resources Canada’s Office of Energy Efficiency and distributed monthly to 16,000 subscribers. Our goal is to deliver meaningful news and information about programs, services and events related to energy efficiency in commercial and institutional buildings and, as well, to share the success stories of organizations that have benefited from positive change. Help us spread the word by sending this link to your colleagues. We encourage you to subscribe to our sister publication that focuses on energy efficiency in industrial facilities, Heads Up CIPEC.

We welcome reader feedback and are always interested in your story ideas.

Click here if you would like to unsubscribe.