Tag Archives: DOE

Are Green Appraisals Possible?

Perhaps a better approach than wagging fingers at iinadvertent energy hogs is to make the right choices easier. For instance, “Would you rather have solar energy or wind for your entree? How about a side of low-flow dual flush toilets and a faucet aerator with your order?”

Of course, in the real world it is not that simple. Even the choir has a difficult time incorporating green features into their existing buildings because of the difficulty of documenting their value. Real estate appraisers are in the same pickle jar. They must examine the cost to build, replacement value, income (if any) and use comparable sales to support the final value. Except there aren’t any comparable sales in most neighborhoods. At least, not yet.

Myth-defying the Electric Car

Electric cars are being produced by several major manufacturers but the public is leery of the technology. Here we examine a few common myths and give you a true or false on the science applications.

Is Green Management on the Fringe?

In the last few years sustainability principles, green building and green management have become incorporated into the fabric of our lives. Although green management professionals were once regarded as, well, kooks, is it possible we might have become mainstream?

A Free 12-Step Program for Climate Abusers

Let’s face it.  Until we admit we have a problem we won’t make any progress.  Our feeble attempts to cut back or even our best-intentioned half-measures to compensate for energy mismanagement will merely serve to camouflage the real problem. Time is not on our side. We are hurting our families, our communities, our environment and ourselves, yet we seem powerless to stop.  To me this [...]

Seattle Joins Savvy NYC Benchmarkers

The lovely city of Seattle joined the big apple when its city council recently announced its unanimous approval of an Energy Disclosure Ordinance that requires the benchmarking of buildings. Benchmarking has been championed by the Department of Energy (DOE) with the EnergyStar slogan saying it all. ‘If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it’.

RAND Corporation Studies Energy Performance Policies of the EU and The Land Down Under

The study, RAND Infrastructure, Safety, and Environment, focuses only on building energy policies and reviews the efficacy of the many strategies employed by these countries. As all of these programs are relatively new, few hard conclusions are drawn. There are quite a few lines in the sand, however, and some of these are particularly interesting with regard to human behavior.

Government Subsidizing Warmth via Weatherization

Funding limits on weatherization retrofits have been raised to $6,500 per unit and income eligibility requirements are now 200% of poverty level. If you feel you have residents that may qualify, consider a weatherization upgrade through the DOE’s Weatherization Assistance Program, not only for the tenant’s well being but to increase your property’s energy efficiency and value.

Recognizing & Reducing Light Pollution

We have become so accustomed to seeing sky glow – that orangey glow 90% of Americans see at night in developed areas – we consider it a natural phenomenon. Many aesthetically appealing low-energy using LED lighting fixtures are now available for outdoor use, but installation must be done properly if we are to attempt to reduce light pollution. Managers can enhance the ambiance of their grounds and buildings with some simple training.

Calculators

Energy and other sustainability calculators are useful tools for developing an estimate of proposed energy savings for life cycle analysis of products like refrigerators, dishwashers, clothes washers, refrigerated vending machines, etc., and can aid in the analysis of profits, life cycle returns on investment and quality of life decisions.