Recently, USGBC joined a panel of experts to discuss energy resilience at the Better Buildings Summit and Energy Exchange, hosted by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). Participants examined opportunities for resilience measurement and ways to identify areas of improvement, including enhancement of energy performance.
Among the topics was USGBC’s online platform Arc, which enables project teams to collect, measure and benchmark performance data, and work towards improving efficiency and resilience.
Several of USGBC’s rating systems, and their ability to help a project become more resilient, were explored as well, including LEED, SITES, PEER and RELi. This was especially relevant considering the federal government's longstanding commitment to using LEED and SITES for projects owned by the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA).
This year, for the first time, the Better Buildings Summit and Energy Exchange were hosted concurrently, enabling both private sector stakeholders and federal officials access to valuable technical training and discussions on energy management.
The venue for this year’s conference, the Huntington Convention Center of Cleveland, was certified LEED Gold in 2014, making it an ideal setting for the Better Buildings Summit and Energy Exchange. Located in downtown Cleveland, Ohio, the complex maintains several sustainability initiatives to reduce its impact and enhance its resilience.
Expanding federal support for resilience
The overall theme for 2018’s event, “Resilient, Efficient, Secure,” reflects the broad interest in resilience and its relationship to energy efficiency and security from invited panelists and other participants. To kick off the conference, government officials—including Martin Keller, Director of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, and Teresa Pohlman, Executive Director of Sustainability and Environmental Programs for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security—spoke on the intersection of energy security and sustainability.
Emphasis on metrics
"Resilience and Energy Contingency Solutions" served as one of the themes for the conference’s programming, which offered tracks on project examples, business models and successful strategies to enhance energy and water resilience through investments in infrastructure and individual efficiency improvements.
For example, LEED-certified projects may use Arc’s analytics and score to verify and further improve their performance over time, and projects not yet certified can use Arc to make sustainability improvements as they work toward LEED certification.
Upcoming Better Buildings webinar
For more on this year’s conference, join DOE on September 18 from 3–4 p.m. EST for a free webinar featuring three of this year’s top-rated presentations. Register for the webinar.