Submeters: Key Piece in the LEED for Schools Certification 'Puzzle'
The recently released LEED v3 for Schools specification provides fertile ground-primarily in the Energy & Atmosphere (EA) credit area-for the deployment of energy intelligence software, electric submeters, and water, steam, gas and other meters that can interact with the facility's building automation system to provide a precise, real-time energy snapshot of the using facility. A few of the EA certification areas facilitated by submetering include:
EA Prerequisite 1 (Fundamental Commissioning of Building System)
EA Prerequisite 1 uses energy software to identify functionality and performance of electric, water, steam and gas systems to verify correct installation and calibration of the project's energy-related systems per design and construction documents.
EA Prerequisite 2 (Minimum Energy Performance)
EA Prerequisite 2 uses submeters to baseline the facility's minimum energy-efficiency level to reduce the environmental and eonomic impacts of excessive energy use.
EA Credit 1 (Optimize Energy Performance)
EA Credit 1 uses submeters to baseline building performance and to verify achievement of increasing levels of energy performance above the prerequisite baseline.
EA Credit 5 (Measurement & Verification)
EA Credit 5 uses submeters and energy intelligence software to track and report facility energy consumption (kWh) and demand (kW) levels over time.
Other submetering related EA credits include On-site Renewable Energy (EA-2), Enhanced Commissioning (EA-3) and Green Power (EA-6). In addition, credits are also awarded according to regional geographic needs and for efficient water systems 9WE) performance and management.
In addition to LEED certification, schools and universities, including Rockhurst, Ohio State, Bowling Green and University of Hartford are striving to lower costs, increase efficiency, allocate and bill energy costs to tenants, and ease the pressure on their bottom lines. Users are therefore encouraged to develop an understanding of how submetering hardware and software can be put to powerful use in these applications. Whether for new construction or major renovation, the advantages of submetering quickly outweigh the costs-a fact that more schools and universities are coming to appreciate every day.
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