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Interested in Energy Conservation? Consider a comprehensive energy audit.

September 25, 2012

Many want to cut costs and consider energy saving installations.  But where to begin?  A good start is with a comprehensive energy audit that includes Ashrae level energy audit; lighting energy assessment and financing options (LEAF), and water consumption assessments. 

Energy savings, consumption, and recycling audits should address the clients needs of reducing operating expenese, address capital cost requirements, available incentive and financing programs, return on investment, and critical goals and sustainability for the long term.

Consider service providers that provide, at a minimum, a proposal including a guarantee for the amount of savings and willingnes to work until savings are identified beyond a certain agreed upon level; this should result in an agreed upon scope of work, timeline and schedule (it typically takes 6-8 weeks to complete a comprehensive study).  Finally, the client should receive a written report (50-110 pages) provided to, and reviewed with, the stakeholders including a complete breakdown of issues including building envelope, plumbing, electrical, mechanical,& maintenance processes. Budgetary costs should be included for recommended projects with ROI calculations. A spreadsheet should also accompany the report outlining projects that meet the criteria.  A team presentation of the findings to the project stakeholders should be conducted.

With a comprehensive report, the stakeholder should be able to prioritize and pick and choose projects depending on budget and related return on investment.  A study could have numerous cost saving projects and the stakeholder may only choose to implement the low hanging, low cost projects in the near term.  Other projects can be installed based on priority of return on investment and overall long term sustainability objectives.

View the audits from a project by project perspective.  The goal should be to acheive operational cost savings in excess of 10%.  Savings can be over 35% depending on the project.  Multiple recommended projects should also realize a return on investment within 12 months unless a major capital expenditure is required. 





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