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July - Bi-Monthly Bulletin

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Bi-Monthly Bulletin

July 2014

The Better Buildings Bulletin is a bi-monthly feature to help keep you up-to-date on Partner successes, program updates, opportunities to participate, and more.

News and Announcements

Three ways to find a solution– browse implementation models by topic, market sector, and videos

It’s now possible to explore implementation models developed by Better Buildings Challenge Partners based on interest. Implementation models can be browsed by topic such as getting access to data, financing, building expertise in your organization, engaging customers, staff, and your community, and more. These solutions are developed by leading organizations and with support from DOE and are shared more broadly with the marketplace.

You can also see a complete list of implementation models organized by market sectors.

Secretary Moniz Visits Pittsburgh

On July 25, Secretary Ernest Moniz met with Nana Wilberforce, PNC’s Energy Manager, to tour the construction site and see some of the state-of-the-art technologies being incorporated into the PNC Tower project. With its double-skin façade allowing for increased airflow, the tower is expected to ventilate naturally for almost half the year, consuming 50 percent less energy than an average office building. PNC is among the country’s corporate leaders who are taking President Obama’s Better Buildings Challenge, a call to businesses, universities and state and local governments to save energy throughout their buildings.

Read more.

New 2-minute videos: Partners Sharing Solutions

Listen in as Better Buildings Challenge Partners Arlington County, Cleveland Clinic, Cummins, Michigan State University (MSU) and Tower Companies share in two minutes their success in implementing energy efficiency.

Arlington County, VA IM Video

Watch the video: Arlington County: Rethink Energy
Jeannine Altavilla, Energy Program Analyst of the Arlington Initiative to Rethink Energy describes how the county partnered with the community, commercial and residential sectors to develop solutions to slash emissions and energy use.

Cleveland Clinic IM Video

Watch the video: Cleveland Clinic: Engaging Clinicians to Reduce Resource Use in Operating Rooms
Jon Utech, Environmental Sustainability Director at Cleveland Clinic, shares how the medical center brought together clinicians, facility managers and hospital administrators to pilot it’s Greening the OR initiative and develop sustainable practices and reduce energy use.

Cummins IM Video

Watch the video: Cummins: Energy Champion Program
Mark Dhennin, Director of Energy Efficiency and Environment for Cummins, Inc., describes the Energy Champion Program. Using this model, Cummins developed training modules, tools and other resources that have reduced energy intensity by 34%.

MSU IM Video

Watch the video: MSU: Integrated Model for Long Term Campus Energy Planning
Lynda Boomer, Energy and Environmental Design Administrator at MSU, explains how the university joined the Better Buildings Challenge and turned to students and faculty to help develop and implement energy efficient retrofits for buildings across the campus.

Tower Companies IM Video

Watch the video: Tower Companies: Leveraging Green Leases to Reduce Energy and Water Use
Tower Companies, talks about achieving energy savings of at least 16% as a result of launching green leases for tenants across its apartment buildings in Washington D.C.

City of Atlanta celebrates growth, progress, and success

The Energy Department traveled to Atlanta June 20th to celebrate its progress and leadership in working toward a citywide goal to improve the energy performance of its buildings 20% by 2020. Through the Better Buildings Challenge, Atlanta is engaging local business leaders, building owners and operators and other organizations to increase energy and water efficiency, achieving over 9% energy savings since 2011. As the city makes improvements across its building portfolio of 70 million square feet including offices, hospitals, and sports arenas, it is sharing these achievements more broadly with others and fostering competition and collaboration among businesses and organizations looking for innovative and cost-effective ways to make energy efficiency improvements of their own.

Read the DOE news announcement.

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Partners in the News

Better Buildings Challenge

Better Buildings Accelerators

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Partner Solutions: New Implementation Models and Showcase Projects

Better Buildings Challenge Partners and Allies are sharing successful approaches for overcoming barriers to energy efficiency. The latest implementation models and showcase projects are highlighted below.

Implementation Models

  • City of Hillsboro, OR: Sustainability Revolving Fund
    Hillsboro, OR established a Sustainability Revolving Fund (SRF) to tackle projects called out in the city’s Sustainability Plan. Their comprehensive sustainability program includes long term goals for city operations, and community partnerships.
  • New York-Presbyterian Hospital: Gallery Walks
    New York-Presbyterian Hospital launched a retro-commissioning program aimed at engaging all hospital staff as caregivers through “Gallery Walks,” linking patient care with energy management and resulting in a holistic view of improving the environment of care.

Showcase Projects

  • Aeon’s The Landing Apartments expects annual energy savings of 34% and annual cost savings of $23,000 via installation of superinsulation, geothermal technology, highly reflective roof and exterior sun shades, daylighting controls, and the procurement of ENERGY STAR® appliances.
  • City of Fort Worth’s Southside Service Center expects annual energy savings of 42% and annual cost savings of $26,000 through lighting retrofits, the installation of occupancy sensors, variable-air-volume terminal units, variable frequency drives, and direct digital controls, retro-commissioning, and water conservation features such as low-flow toilets, flushometers, and faucet aerators.
  • Rockford Housing Authority’s Park Terrace Apartments expects annual energy savings of 21% and annual cost savings of nearly $7,000 through the installation of a new high efficiency condensing boiler, improved weatherization, lighting upgrades, and high efficiency water fixtures.
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Better Information

Kimco Realty Corporation discusses takeaways from the Better Buildings Summit

Kimco recently summarized their most valuable takeaways from the 2014 Better Buildings Summit in a blog post, including the impact of lease structures on promoting building efficiency, the availability of whole-building utility performance data, and technologies that can readily scale across large property portfolios.

Hilton completes demonstration project of LED downlights at Columbus hotel

The Next Generation Luminaires (NGL) Solid State Lighting (SSL) Design Competition recently completed its first demonstration projects, which showcased winning downlights installed in guest rooms at the Hilton Columbus Downtown. The LED downlights saved 46% to 50% on energy compared to the CFL downlights, and provided the aesthetic appearance and dimming functionality desired.

Online tool makes it easy to purchase energy-efficient products in bulk

Quantity Quotes is a simple online marketplace to make bulk purchases of green and energy-efficient products easy. This tool, initially developed by DOE and HUD, helps you order EPA ENERGY STAR products, including CFLs, light fixtures, clothes washers, dehumidifiers, refrigerators, room air conditioners and dishwashers. New products are added frequently. This bulk-purchasing tool is especially helpful to organizations operating in sectors that need to make bulk-purchases regularly, such as multi-family housing managers and builders.

Visit to create an account and take the first steps to developing a purchase request. Please contact Stephanie Stern at, 510-891-6584 if you would like more information.

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Mark Your Calendar

Better Buildings Webinars

Thursday, August 7, 2014, 3:00-3:45 PM
Better Buildings Challenge: Education Sector Partners
Holly Carr and Crystal McDonald, U.S. Department of Energy.

Join the Energy Department as we share how Better Buildings Challenge Education Partners are achieving their energy goals by deploying energy management programs. Learn about exciting new solutions including implementation models and innovative showcase projects, showing actual performance data and delivering real energy and cost savings results. Also hear how Partners demonstrated progress in 2013 including percent improvement, and cumulative savings across school districts and higher education such as colleges and universities.

Register here.

September 2, 2014, 3:00–4:00 PM
Make Your Building Sing! Building Re-tuning to Reduce Energy Waste

Re-tuning is a low-cost process to identify and correct building operational problems that lead to energy waste. To expand the practice of re-tuning, the Department of Energy (DOE) and the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) developed a curricula focused on retuning both large (with a building automation system, or BAS) and small (without a BAS) commercial buildings. Hear from Better Buildings Challenge Partners who have employed retuning training to improve building performance and learn about opportunities to participate in trainings in your area.

Register here.

October 7, 3:00–4:00 PM
PACE Financing for Energy Efficiency: Success Stories

Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing is a vehicle to pay for energy efficiency improvements or renewable energy installations on private property. Local or state governments or other entities fund the upfront costs of the improvements which are paid back over time through property assessments added to the owner’s property tax bills. Better Buildings Challenge partners describe their successful experiences with PACE financing as program developers, city administrators, and property owners.

Register here.

Better Buildings Conferences

October 1-3, 12:00-1:30 PM
2014 World Energy Engineering Congress, Washington, DC

This year, the Energy Department will recognize Better Plants Partners for their energy efficiency achievements at the World Energy Engineering Congress. During this year’s recognition lunch, Partners will be recognized for meeting or sustaining their energy goals and new partners will be featured for joining. In addition, the Energy Department will highlight Partner successes and feature their significant contributions to developing new solutions.

Events and Conferences

August 19, 2014, 8:30-10:00 AM
2014 ACEEE Summer Study on Energy Efficiency in Buildings

Maria T. Vargas, Director Better Buildings Challenge presents on Better Buildings: A National Initiative Driving Greater Energy Efficiency in U.S. Buildings. During the presentation Vargas will share an overview of progress, highlight key trends and accomplishments, and discuss the launch of new Better Buildings Accelerators, and expansions of the Better Buildings Challenge to include a water savings pilot, multifamily housing and data centers.

See full program here.

September 5, 2014, 8:00 AM–5:30 PM
NH&RA’s Preservation Through Energy Efficiency Conference in Minneapolis

Kevin Bush, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, will join other HUD staff, financial and technical experts, as well as affordable multifamily housing developers to talk about immediate actions that can be taken to create portfolio-wide energy, water, and other utility efficiencies.

See full program here.

September 29-October 2, 9:15-10:15 AM
Retail Industry Leaders Association Retail Sustainability Conference

Holly Carr, U.S. Department of Energy, joins co-presenter Mike Zatz, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for the session titled Learning from the Best: Review of the U.S. EPA & DOE's Building Energy Programs.

Reducing energy use is fundamental to improving the environmental performance for retailers and saving money for operations. This session will highlight organizations that are using voluntary EPA and DOE programs to save energy through a comprehensive process that includes determining energy saving goals, developing innovative cost effective energy solutions, deploying efficient technologies and market practices, benchmarking buildings, and improving energy efficiency. Speakers will include both program participants and those supporting the programs to discuss their experience and lessons learned for others.

See full program here.

October 17, 2:30-4:00 PM
National Association of Housing and Redevelopment, Baltimore, MD

The Housing Authority of Baltimore City's Monica Watkins speaks about the city's energy conservation work. As a Better Buildings Challenge Partner, Baltimore is focused on greening and sustainability practices at its various properties, ensuring the use of EnergyStar® appliances and tools and most notably, undertaking a massive self-directed Energy Performance Contract initiative at 5 of its major sites.

See full program here.

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Opportunities to Participate

Sector Opportunities - Ways to Get Involved in the Better Buildings Alliance

Members in the Better Buildings Alliance participate in a variety of activities to foster the sharing of successes with their peers, including technology or market solutions teams, webinars, technology demonstrations, and more. For detailed information on how to engage with your sector of interest, take a closer look at the overviews below.

Better Buildings Alliance Invites Non-profits, NGOs, and Trade Organizations to Join as Affiliates

Already, dozens of affiliates are connecting with the Better Buildings Alliance to promote energy efficiency to their membership. By teaming up with DOE’s network of technical experts, we advance energy efficiency goals, share innovative cost effective energy solutions, and support the adoption of efficient technologies and market practices.

To join, send your completed Affiliate Agreement to

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New Partners

New Better Buildings Challenge Partners

  • Century Housing joins as a multifamily partner with 290 thousand square feet.
  • Cheyenne Housing Authority pledges 320 thousand square feet multifamily housing space.
  • Darigold joins as a Better Plants Partner and commits 12 industrial facilities.
  • Fort Wayne Housing Authority pledges 500 thousand square feet of multifamily housing space.
  • FS Energy pledges 75 million square feet of multifamily housing space.
  • Houston Housing Authority commits 4.5 million square feet of multifamily housing space.
  • JBG joins committing 12.5 million square feet of commercial property.
  • Nevada Rural Housing Authority commits 1 million square feet and 1,000 units as a multifamily Partner.
  • New Life Homes joins as a multifamily Partner with 50 thousand square feet.
  • Peabody Properties, Inc. commits over 9.9 million square feet of multifamily housing space.
  • Presby’s Inspired Life joins as a new multifamily Partner.
  • Schochet Companies commits nearly 4.2 million square feet of multifamily housing space.
  • The Boston Land Company joins as a multifamily Partner with 1.3 million square feet.
  • The Jewish Community Housing for the Elderly commits 933 thousand square feet and 1,200 multifamily units.
  • Yolo County, California Housing Authority joins as a multifamily Partner with 370 thousand square feet.
  • Windsor Locks Housing Authority commits over 27 thousand square feet of multifamily housing space.

New Better Buildings Accelerator Partners

New Better Buildings Alliance Members

New Better Plants Members

  • Coilplus Pennsylvania, Div. of Coilplus, Inc. is a flat-rolled steel processor and supplier offering precision processing.
  • Firth Rixson specializes in rings, forgings, and metal products for the aerospace, power generation, and mining industries.
  • GKN Aerospace – Cromwell is a leading supplier of composite and metallic assemblies to the global aviation industry.
  • Hitchiner Manufacturing Co., Inc. supplies complete-to-print, high-volume, complex thin-wall investment castings and fully-finished casting-based subassemblies and components to the automotive and aerospace industries.
  • MB Aerospace provides advanced technology in machining and fabrication solutions for complex components across the full aero-engine lifecycle.
  • RTI International Metals, Inc. is global supplier of advanced titanium and specialty metal mill products, parts, specialized engineering, and other services.
  • Selmet, Inc. manufactures titanium castings for the global aerospace industry.
  • Weber Metals, Inc. is an aluminum and titanium forging supplier primarily serving the aerospace, commercial, and defense industries.
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