Energy Resources Group performs levels one, two, and three energy audits. Often these audits are geared toward a client’s pre-defined economic criteria. For instance, a client might say they will invest in energy efficiency measures that have positive net present value (NPV) with a given discount rate and utility inflation, or a certain internal rate of return, or with the intention .
Energy Resources Group typically follows the following steps during a level 2 audit:
1. Collection of information: utility data, drawings, site survey, economic parameters
Energy Resources Group needs access to three years of historical energy data, either provided by the client or the utility companies. To gather the data from utilities companies, ERG needs the front page of all bills, last 4 digits of the FEIN, and may need additional forms signed granting permission to receive client usage data.
ERG also needs access to any available drawings for the building, specifically, architectural, mechanical, and electrical drawings.
A detailed walkthrough of the building is also performed, noting all points of energy consumption, and verifying equipment information and status of HVAC systems. Interviews with maintenance and operations staff are conducted.
In conversation with ERG, the client will specify what economic criteria they are comfortable with for investing in energy efficiency. For instance a client might specify any of the following investment criteria: that it perform better than their investment fund; offer a 6-year simple payback; has positive net present value (NPV) with a given discount rate and utility inflation, or that it maximizes use of PACE financing. This conversation will guide ERG in recommendations of measures and in exploration of financing opportunities.
2. Utility Usage Analysis
Utility usage data is regressed with respect to weather during the actual billing periods to generate equations which predict the average annual utility usage and are used later to verify savings after energy efficiency measures have been put into place. The usage analysis also reveals how the client’s building compares to the Energy Use Intensity (EUI) of similar buildings.
3. Loads Analysis and equipment life-cycle analysis
Detailed information on the building design and usage profile is used to calculate the expected peak heating and cooling demand on the building. This load is then compared with the capacity of installed equipment, which often exposes that the building has too much capacity installed. If this is the case, it can result in both inefficient and ineffective operation. The life-cycle of the existing equipment is reviewed in this context. In some cases, it can be cost effective to replace inefficient equipment which has not reached the end of its life cycle.
4. Detailing of Energy Efficiency Measures – Investment Opportunities
ERG will identify Energy Efficiency Measures (EEMs) that are investment opportunities that meet the economic parameters selected by the client. The estimated costs of each EEM are compared to projected savings, giving expected payback periods or other financial analysis per EEM.
The Audit Report includes the results from the usage and loads analyses, as well as a one-page description and analysis for each EEM. The next steps forward will be outlined, and financing opportunities that fit the client’s preferred investment strategy will be included.
A meeting with ERG staff will be scheduled to present the audit and respond to any questions. A second meeting will be scheduled to discuss financing and how to effectively move forward on the suggested EEMs.
Additional reporting can also be requested. This can include case-study development, development of client promotional materials related to the green investment, or post-implementation savings reports (highly recommended).
If all requested information is readily available, an energy audit typically takes from 2-3 months from the point when a contract is signed. Expedited studies can be requested.
ERG also offers technical, design, and project management assistance for implementing recommended EEMs. A separate contract for these services can be discussed after delivery of the report.
Please contact us if you are interested in an energy audit for your building.