Energy efficiency in building design is an ongoing and continuously evolving process as state-of-the-art technology and standards develop over time. To maintain best-in-class facilities, energy efficiency must be incorporated into the design of new construction, and based on the principle of continuous improvement for building standards and specifications. In addition to design principles for new construction, companies need to routinely review existing facilities to incorporate retrofits based on criteria such as return on investment, energy costs and reliability, life cycle replacement of existing equipment and structures, and greenhouse gas emissions along with other environmental impacts.

This paper describes the integration of sustainable building specifications and energy efficiency programs into both new construction standards and guidelines for facility retrofits. Critical aspects include:

  • Developing sustainable building specifications to meet internal company requirements for new construction.

  • Identifying energy improvement opportunities through energy audits and use of best management practices for facility retrofits.

  • Conducting equipment life cycle analysis to calculate return on investment (ROIs) based on amortized annual cash flow projections.

The process is based on internationally recognized standards such as the ASTM International E60 standard "Specification for Minimum Environmental, Social and Economic requirements for Building and Promoting Sustainability".

Case studies are presented to illustrate how a company’s energy reduction program began and evolved during a two-year period. An additional case study will highlight the application of retrofits at 67 facilities reducing annual energy consumption by 9.5 million kilowatt hours (KWh), eliminating 6,534 metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions, and reducing annual energy costs by USD $817,000.

The use of measurement and tracking tools is critical for determining energy reduction results and effects on carbon footprints. This paper also describes the company’s tracking system and how the data is used for internal and external sustainability reporting.

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