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Benchmarking Can Reveal Surprising Results

June 11, 2013

We’ve discussed the critical importance of evaluating high performance buildings often on this blog and a recent article from Greentech Media highlights this again. In short, it’s never enough to simply cut the ribbon on a high performance building and pat ourselves on the back. Continuously evaluating and benchmarking against business goals is the only way we will continue to strengthen our technology, the buildings we support and the industry as a whole.

Per the article, when Seattle took stock of its buildings, it found that its libraries were 42 percent more efficient than the average U.S. library, while the police and fire stations used a surprisingly high amount of energy - far more than the national average.

To further illustrate the need to benchmark high performance buildings results to ensure effectiveness, note the results out of New York City last year that found some of its 80-year-old buildings were outperforming LEED-rated ones!

Increasingly, cities are becoming proactive about addressing building performance by instituting requirements that operators of public buildings take steps to monitor and maintain energy performance. For instance, New York City's Local Law 87, passed in 2009, actually requires energy audits and recommissioning for most building types.

All of this points to the fact that recommissioning an older building should not be discounted as a way to significantly increase efficiency, cut costs and help a company or city meet its larger business goals.

The Trane approach to achieving – and maintaining – a high performance building outcome includes making sure that the benefits are measurable and improve year-over-year. This means that the building’s entire operations are tracked and managed, and they contribute to achieving the larger business goals of the company.

Trane Intelligent Services uses our exclusive software analytics and technical specialists to provide continuous data collection, rigorous analysis, and specific recommendations to alert operators the moment there is a need so that action can be taken to keep the building running at optimized efficiency. This continual evaluation of a building’s performance can help lessen the chances that surprises – especially the negative ones – are revealed during a benchmarking exercise.

Go here to learn more about measuring HPB performance and Trane Intelligent Services.