Investing and implementing improved operation strategies or energy-efficient equipment will enable reduction in energy and water consumption and GHG emissions, but M&V is a key component in sustained performance.
An effective M&V plan provides the details of not only the energy conservation measure(s)’ (ECM) expected performance target, but also includes an established baseline to index the savings. It will detail the methodologies which will be used to measure and calculate the energy consumption and energy savings or avoidance as well as the expectations for reporting, targets, maintenance and calibration of the M&V program throughout its reporting cycle. Ongoing M&V reporting provides analysis of the system(s)’ operation with respect to a target. This allows a focused study of the ECM(s)’ effectiveness, enabling operators or managers to optimize efficiency and improve maintenance and goals throughout the performance period.
DEEM Solutions adheres to the International Performance Measurement and Verification Protocol (IPMVP) in developing plans and executing. We will ensure that planning and reporting will also comply with incentive and performance contract requirements. We will collaborate with clients to provide a comprehensive, sustainable and affordable M&V program.
Energy and water reporting provides an effective tool to assess a facility’s utility usage. Facility, consumption and demand data is collected, compiled and tracked. The data is normalized for weather, production or other independent variables to allow useful analysis. The report can be used to trend and benchmark facility performance to manage energy usage, begin or enhance existing energy conservation initiatives and forecast utility use and cost. It may also be used to support green house gas (GHG) emissions reporting.
There are municipal, provincial and federal reporting requirements across Canada. In Ontario, energy reporting is or will be required for most sectors. Privately owned commercial buildings will begin reporting in 2018 (reporting due dates will be phased according to gross area).
At DEEM Solutions, we are experienced at developing and presenting detailed energy reports as well as verifying data collection for all sectors. We are competent using various energy reporting software including Energy Star Portfolio Manager.
Energy audits are performed to document, analyze and benchmark the building’s current utility usage, establish energy consumption and demand baselines, allocate energy use by function, inventory energy-consuming equipment and to identify and determine feasibility of potential energy conservation measures (ECMs). Energy audits may also be isolated and include only one utility or specific systems such as lighting, steam traps, motors, compressors, building envelope etc.
Audits and feasibility studies will vary on their depth of detail based on how the customer plans to use the report, the information available, the type of facility, the audit budget and expertise of the auditor. In some cases, a portion of the audit or study cost may be covered by local utility or government incentives.
DEEM Solutions can perform or support all levels of audit for all type of facilities including ASHRAE Level 1 (Walk-through, high level analysis and report, low cost/no-cost ECMs), Level 2 (Detailed energy analysis, energy calculations, ECM savings and cost analysis, M&V support) and Level 3 (Finer details, capital project support, energy and cost modeling). We will work with our clients to ensure that our audits, studies and reports satisfy their requirements within their budgets.
Energy conservation measures (ECM) and retrofits may be incented programs offered by local utilities or government. Depending on the ECMs, a project may have the potential to receive multiple incentives from various stages of a project as well as from different awarding bodies. The application process will be varied on its level of complexity depending on the program, the measures and the implementation. All incentive applications require supporting documents and many require third-party verification.
Successful and cost-effective incentive application requires knowledge of programs, timelines, eligibility and required documentation. The cost and time to administer an incentive using in-house resources may exceed budgeted allowance and potential reward.
DEEM can support all phases of incentive application on our clients’ behalf. We offer not only experience in administration but also insight from our experience in utility program delivery.
Recommissioning (RCx) works at resolving problems ranging from inherent issues from the original design and construction to developed problems related to aging equipment or operational changes in a facility. These issues can result in ineffective operation of equipment which translates into significant cost attributed to inefficient energy use, maintenance and in some cases reduced occupant comfort. There is a positive financial impact of a successful RCx project: savings of up to 15% of utility and O&M costs can be realized.
RCx is comprised of four distinct phases which may be carried independently and have a direct correlation with the cost to perform. Phase I includes the pre-screening, high-level evaluation and assessment of buildings for RCx selection. Phase II is the investigation phase and encompasses energy analysis, data collection, measurement and trending, and improvement recommendations. A report which details the recommendations and cost of improvements will be delivered for review and measure selection by the client at the end of this phase. Phase III covers the implementation of selected improvement measures with verification and trending of their performance. Phase IV completes the process by delivering a comprehensive RCx report which includes details of implemented measures and processes to sustain improved facility performance. It will also include detailed training for operation personnel and a formal project turnover meeting. RCx is a collaborative process and the Facility Management team is involved throughout entire project scope.
At DEEM Solutions, we will work closely with our clients to ensure that the level of financial commitment selected best suits their needs. Since the RCx process can be exhaustive, it may be more feasible to develop a multi-phase approach to ensure the maximum financial benefit is realized in the shortest time. We will also work to get all relevant incentive funding for our customers.
Energy awareness or training is essential to sustaining reduced energy and maintenance costs. Developing a plan to engage employees in becoming an active component to a facility’s efficient performance is often a low-cost solution with a large impact. We have extensive experience working with facility management and operations teams striving for participation in maintained success and continuous improvement. Our approach is collaborative; we walk through and sit with the team to understand their concerns with a new strategy, why they operate systems as they do, and hear their own suggestions. We understand that many inefficient behaviours may be the result of inherited issues, work-arounds for problems which should resolved, or habits developed over the years. Additionally, there may be unaddressed systemic issues which have prevented more efficient strategies from being implemented and may come to light through an awareness program. We work with clients’ facility teams to make sure they understand why they may be expected to change operations from “the way it’s always been done” but we also record and include their own suggestions. Tracking energy and maintenance savings incurred by implementing an energy awareness program is also important to foster a sense of accomplishment in behavioural and operational evolution.
Third-party review of energy and water retrofit projects and reporting can assist in determining the accuracy and reliability of a proposed or verified project. DEEM Solutions is experienced at providing a sanity review of completed audits, feasibility, and detailed engineering studies submitted by ESCO’s and Contractors by providing impartial feedback to our clients. After a project has been secured, we can also review and confirm the adherence to contractual obligations throughout both the implementation of a project and the post-implementation performance period.
Researching, vetting and engaging resources for procurement on an energy project can be a very inefficient and economically challenging process if it is outside of a company's typical focus or expected turnaround is required to be short (for example unexpected motor failure which becomes an energy retrofit with a limited downtime window). Engaging a third-party to act as a procurement agent may be a viable solution. DEEM Solutions offers years of experience, connections and decision-making which can help with project procurement of contractors and material.
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