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A 3-Step Guide: Investing In and Adapting Your Infrastructure for the Future

Investing in infrastructure is a complex undertaking, with a wide range of options and challenges that organizations must navigate. Careful consideration is required to develop a well-defined plan that sets the stage for future success.

The physical building(s) within an organization's infrastructure plays a crucial role in energy consumption and making even minor modifications to the building may help to impact energy efficiency. Upgrading windows, doors, and lighting can help yield immediate reductions in energy consumption, while transitioning to more efficient HVAC equipment can pave the way for a more sustainable future. Infrastructure updates require a great deal of planning and must be adaptable and sustainable. Breaking down the process into a few important steps will help manage outcomes to ensure success.

Step 1: Assess Your Current Infrastructure

Your energy journey begins with understanding your current energy usage. Collecting information on how your building is currently operating will provide you with a benchmark to measure future successes. Setting up an ENERGY STAR portfolio will consider your building age, location, and other key metrics to assign an ENERGY STAR score. This will allow you to assess where your infrastructure stands in comparison to similar buildings to take the next steps towards sustainability.

A trusted energy collaborator will help perform an Energy Audit for your properties. An energy audit includes a site visit and detailed review of your assets, energy usage, and energy spend to inspect and identify opportunities to become more efficient with your infrastructure and equipment.

Step 2: Set Goals

Once you have a comprehensive understanding of your energy usage, prioritizing and developing a clear energy plan becomes possible. Your energy collaborator will provide knowledge and guidance to outline organizationally specific goals. It’s important to recognize that energy plans are strategic outlines, and not all changes can happen at once and customization is essential. Balancing factors like timing, funding options, and other organizational goals prepares you for long-term sustainable solutions.

Step 3: Understand Your Options

Even though many energy journeys look different, the goals of becoming more energy efficient, reducing energy costs and creating a more sustainable future are common across all industries. Understanding the available options based on your specific goals empowers you to make informed and sustainable decisions for your organization.

Investing in infrastructure helps organizations achieve sustainability goals. The Norton Healthcare and Powhatan County School District, demonstrate the transformative outcomes achieved with the right energy plan and Trane as a trusted collaborator. Each organization made infrastructure investments and equipment upgrades according to their unique timelines and needs, yielding unexpected benefits and long-term success.

Investing in infrastructure presents challenges that require strategic planning and thoughtful deliberation. Understanding available options for sustainability empowers organizations to make informed and balanced decisions that can lead to enhanced energy efficiency. By adopting a systematic approach and collaborating with Trane, organizations can effectively navigate options and plan their investment to not only attain short-term objectives but create continued energy success for the future.

About the Author

Christy Fetsch


Christy Fetsch is a Certified Energy Manager and LEED Accredited Professional that has helped commercial and industrial facilities, increase efficiency and profitability for the last fifteen years. Christy received a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Kentucky. Being a member of the Trane team for 16 years, she uses her talents to provide strategic energy management and enhanced physical environments to help organizations realize savings, manage risk, and support their missions. Her passion for sustainable environments and technology are put to good use serving the Kentucky Society of Healthcare Engineers as Co-Sustainability Liaison as well as assisting with their social media.