CS-2009 EAp2: Minimum Energy Performance

  • Beyond code compliance, but doable

    This prerequisite is a big one, not only because it’s required for all projects, but also because it feeds directly into EAc1: Optimize Energy Performance, where about a fifth of the total available points in LEED are at stake. Master these minimum requirements, and you can use the same compliance path as in EAp2 to earning points.

    You won’t earn the prerequisite by accident, though. Although “energy efficiency” is on everyone’s lips, the mandatory and performance-based requirements for EAp2 go beyond code compliance in most places. That said, there is nothing to stop you from meeting the requirements with a reasonable amount of effort, and the environmental benefits as well as the operational cost savings are significant.

    Most projects start by choosing which of the three available compliance paths to follow. We’ll look at them each in turn.

    Option 1: Energy modeling

    Option 1 alone gives you access to all of the points available through EAc1, and offers the most flexibility in giving you credit for innovative designs.

    First, you need to meet the mandatory requirements of ASHRAE 90.1-2007 for all major components, including the envelope, HVAC, lighting, and domestic hot water. ASHRAE 90.1 has had some changes and new mandatory requirements since the 2004 version, which was referenced on previous LEED systems, so be sure to review the standard carefully.

    Cost of changeEnergy efficiency is an area where it behooves project teams to start early and work together to maximize savings. Playing catch-up later on can be costly.Second, you need to demonstrate a 10% savings (5% for existing buildings) for your designed building compared with a baseline case meeting the minimum requirements of ASHRAE 90.1 (or Title 24-2005, Part 6 for California projects). You do this by creating a computer model following rules described in Appendix G of ASHRAE 90.1.

    Computer modeling offers the following key advantages:

    • It can be used to provide feedback on your design both early on, and as the design progresses, so it’s best to use in this way rather than simply demonstrating compliance.
    • It can help your team focus on the most cost-effective efficiency strategies, by plugging in different options and seeing the results.
    • If your building is unconventional or complex in design, an energy model is the best way to account for that.

    Your building type may not have a choice—you may have to follow this path, because both Options 2 and 3 are prescriptive compliance paths that are only available to specific building types and sizes.

    However, if your building type and size allow, and you don’t want to embark on the complex process of computer modeling, which also requires expert assistance from a modeler or from a member of the mechanical engineer’s team, the prescriptive compliance paths are a good way to earn the prerequisite simply by following a checklist.

    Solar shadingPassive design strategies such as shading to reduce solar heat gain are the most cost-effective ways to improve energy performance.Note, however, that when you get to EAc1, there are a lot fewer points on the table for the prescriptive paths, and that you have to follow each prescriptive requirement. These paths also require more collaboration and focus early on in design than you might think. The design team must work together to integrate all of the prescriptive requirements, and Option 3 even requires documentation of certain design processes.

    Option 2: ASHRAE Advanced Energy Design Guides

    The Advanced Energy Design Guides are published by ASHRAE for office, warehouse, and retail projects less than 20,000 ft2—so if you don’t fall into one of those categories, you’re not eligible for this path.

    These guides outline strategies to reduce energy use by 30% from 2001 levels, or an amount equivalent to approximately 10%–14% reduction from ASHRAE 90.1-2007. If you choose this compliance path, become familiar with the list of prescriptive requirements and commit to meeting all of them.

    Option 3: Advanced Buildings Core Performance Guide

    The Core Performance Guide path is a good option if all of the following are true:

    • your project is smaller than 100,000 ft2,
    • you cannot pursue Option 2 because there is not an ASHRAE guide for the building type,
    • your project is not a healthcare facility, lab, or warehouse,
    • and you would rather not commit to the energy modeling required for Option 1.

    Comply with all requirements within Sections 1 and 2 of the guide. If you choose this path, become familiar with the list of prescriptive requirements and commit to meeting them. Also note that it’s not just a list of prescriptive requirements, but a prescribed process for achieving energy efficiency goals. You must demonstrate that you considered a couple of alternate designs, for example, and that certain team meetings were held.

    Reduce energy loads first

    Energy efficiency offers a clear combination of environmental benefit and benefit to the owner through reduced operational expenses, and potentially reduced first costs, if you’re able to reduce the size and complexity of your HVAC system with a more efficient envelope.

    High-tech HVAC systems, and onsite renewable energy generation are often signature components of green buildings, but consider these strategies more “icing” on the cake, rather than a place to start. Start with building orientation and passive design features first. Also look at envelope design, such as energy-efficient windows, walls and roof, before looking at HVAC and plug loads. A poorly designed envelope with a high-tech HVAC system is not, on the whole, efficient or cost-effective. 

    District energy systems

    Projects connected to district energy systems will not be able to utilize the system efficiencies of the base plant to demonstrate compliance with the prerequisite. They can plan on benefiting from these systems under EAc1, however.

    Look for incentives

    Focusing on energy efficiency and renewable energy generation can seem to add costs to a project, but there are a variety of utility-provided, as well as state, and federal incentives available to offset those premiums. (See Resources.)

  • FAQs for EAp2

    Is it acceptable to model a split-type AC with inverter technology compressor as a heat pump, like modeling VRF?

    Ideally if the software you are using cannot model a technology directly then seek a published workaround related to your software. If you can't find a published workaround then model it as you think it should be modeled and explain how you have modeled it in the preliminary LEED submission.

    A portion of our building envelope is historic. Can we exclude it from our model?

    No, not if it is part of the LEED project. However, there is an exemption for existing building envelopes in Appendix G that allow you to model the existing condition in the baseline so you do not pay a penalty.

    For an existing building, do I need to rotate the model?

    No, not for an existing building.

    Our project has a large process load—75%. Despite our efforts to make an efficient HVAC design, the cost savings are minimal. What can we do to earn this prerequisite and be eligible for LEED certification? Is there any flexibility in how we model the process load?

    You must model accurately. Since you don't have enough savings in the building energy, find savings in the process. Either you will be able to demonstrate that compared to a conventional baseline the process being installed into the factory is demonstrably better than "similar newly constructed facilities," allowing you to claim some savings, or the owner needs to install some energy-saving measures into the process to get the project the rest of the way there. Either option can be difficult, but not impossible.

    Account for process load reductions through the exceptional calculation method. A baseline must be established based on standard practice for the process in your location. Any claim of energy savings needs a thorough narrative explaining the baseline and the strategy for energy savings along with an explanation of how the savings were calculated.

    Our process load is higher than 25%. Do we have to justify that?

    It is common to have a 80%–90% process load in a manufacturing facility. The 25% default in LEED is based on office buildings. If you think your load is lower than 25%, it is recommended that you explain why in a short narrative. It is also recommended to briefly explain it if your load is 25% exactly, since that level commonly reveals that the process loads were not accurately represented.

    Do the required savings for this prerequisite (and credit) need to come only from building energy, or also process loads?

    The energy savings are based on the whole building energy use—building and process. LEED does not stipulate exactly where they come from.

    Our local code references ASHRAE 90.1-2010. Should I use that for my documentation, or 90.1-2007?

    For LEED 2009 you'll need touse 90.1-2007. There were some significant changes in 90.1-2010—too many to account for in your LEED review, and your project would also have a much harder time demonstrating the same percentage energy savings.

    Our project doesn't have enough energy savings to earn the prerequisite. Can we get there by incorporating onsite renewables?

    Yes according to LEED, although it is not recommended as a best practice, and it is usually more cost-effective to invest in energy savings in the building.

    Can I claim exterior lighting savings for canopy lighting even though a baseline model cannot include shading elements?

    You can assume exterior lighting savings for canopies against the baseline, but not the shading effects of canopies.

    The project is built on a site with existing exterior lighting installed. How should this be accounted for?

    If exterior lighting is present on the project site, consider it as a constant in both energy model cases.

    Can mezzanines open to floors below be excluded from the energy model?

    Any conditioned area must be included in the energy model.

    How do I provide a zip code for an international location?

    The Energy Star portion of the form does not apply to international projects.

    For a project outside the U.S., how do I determine the climate zone?

    Use the tables and definitions provided in 90.1 Appendix B to determine an equivalent ASHRAE climate zone.

    For a project outside the U.S., how do I determine the Target Finder score?

    International projects are not required to enter a Target Finder score. Target Finder is based on U.S. energy use data.

    Do hotel rooms need automatic light shut-off control?

    For Section 9.4.1.1c, a manual control device would be sufficient to comply with mandatory provisions.

    How commonly are the 90.1 mandatory compliance forms submitted as part of EAp2/EAc1?

    Submitting these forms is not common; however, it can be beneficial if you are applying for any exceptions.

    The Section 9 space-by-space method does not include residential space types. What should I use?

    Use the building area method.

    Can the Passive House Planning Package (PHPP) be used to energy model for LEED?

    Although there is no formal list of approved simulation tools, there are a few requirements per G2.2.1, including the ability of the program to provide hourly simulation for 8760 hours per year, and model ten or more thermal zones, which PHPP does not meet.

    Can the Trace 700 'LEED Energy Performance Summary Report' by uploaded to LEED Online in lieu of the Section 1.4 tables spreadsheet?

    The automated Trace 700 report provides less information than is requested by the Section 1.4 tables spreadsheet. The Section 1.4 tables spreadsheet must be completed.

    Which baseline HVAC system do I use if my building has no heating or air conditioning?

    Assign HVAC systems as per Appendix-G and Section 6 but set thermostatic setpointsSetpoints are normal operating ranges for building systems and indoor environmental quality. When the building systems are outside of their normal operating range, action is taken by the building operator or automation system. out of range so that systems never turn on.

    Our project has a diesel backup generator. Should we include it in our energy model?

    If it is only used for backup and not for regular use such as peak shaving—no.

    Can SHGC be higher in the proposed than in the baseline model?

    SHGC is not a mandatory provision so it is available for trade-off and can be higher than the baseline.

    Do I need to justify the electrical and fuel rates I am using in my model?

    You generally wouldn't need to upload any documentation, but particularly for a non-U.S. project, it may help to provide a short narrative about what they are based on.

Legend

  • Best Practices
  • Gotcha
  • Action Steps
  • Cost Tip

Pre-Design

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  • Discuss your project’s energy performance objectives, along with how those are shaping design decisions, with the owner. Record energy targets in the Owners Project Requirements (OPR) for the commissioning credits EAp1 and EAc3


  • You won’t earn this prerequisite by accident. The energy efficiency requirements here are typically much more stringent than local codes, so plan on giving it special attention with your team, including leadership from the owner. 


  • Consider stating goals in terms of minimum efficiency levels and specific payback periods. For example: “Our goal is to exceed a 20% reduction from ASHRAE 90.1, with all efficiency measures having a payback period of 10 years or less.”


  • Develop a precedent for energy targets by conducting research on similar building types and using the EPA’s Target Finder program. (See Resources.)


  • For Option 1 only, you will need to comply with the mandatory requirements of ASHRAE 90.1-2007, to bring your project to the minimum level of performance. The ASHRAE 90.1-2007 User’s Manual is a great resource, with illustrated examples of solutions for meeting the requirements.


  • ASHRAE 90.1-2007 has some additional requirements compared with 2004. Read through the standard for a complete update. The following are some samples. 

    • All exterior walls must be installed with rigid insulation of the spans across all floors. This can be accomplished by placing the insulation outside the air barrier. 
    • All exterior doors must be tested for maximum air leakage rate. 
    • All spaces must have independent lighting controls. 
    • Occupancy sensors must be installed in some spaces.
    • The minimum efficiency level of specific mechanical equipment has been raised.  

  • The prerequisite’s energy-reduction target of 10% is not common practice and is considered beyond code compliance. 


  • ClerestoryIndirect sunlight delievered through clerestories like this helps reduce lighting loads as well as cooling loads. Photo – YRG Sustainability, Project – Cooper Union, New York A poorly designed envelope with a high-tech HVAC system is not, on the whole, efficient or cost-effective. Start with building orientation and passive design features first when looking for energy efficiency. Also look at envelope design, such as energy-efficient windows, walls and roof, before looking at HVAC and plug loads. HVAC may also be a good place to improve performance with more efficient equipment, but first reducing loads with smaller equipment can lead to even greater operational and upfront savings. A poorly designed envelope with a high-tech HVAC system is not, on the whole, efficient or cost-effective. 


  • Don’t plan on using onsite renewable energy generation (see EAc2) to make your building energy-efficient. It is almost always more cost-effective to make an efficient building, and then to add renewables like photovoltaics as the “icing” on the cake.


  • Some rules of thumb to reduce energy use are:

    • Program similar spaces together to reduce distribution losses 
    • Use a window-to-wall ratio below 40%, on average
    • Use a window-to-wall ratio below 20% on east and west sides, to reduce low-angle solar gain, and glare; 
    • Reduce direct solar gain with solar shades or building geometry and orientation
    • Distribute heating and cooling loads uniformly throughout all facades for a smaller system size. 
    • Design a tight and well-insulated building envelope to reduce the heating load and improve HVAC performance
    • Use right-sized and efficient heating and cooling systems
    • Consider onsite renewable energy generation.

  • Choosing your compliance path


  • Find the best credit compliance path based on your building type and energy-efficiency targets. Use the following considerations, noting that some projects are more suited to a prescriptive approach than others. 


  • Option 1: Whole Building Energy Simulation requires estimating the energy use of the whole building over a calendar year, using methodology established by ASHRAE 90.1-2007, Appendix G. Option 1 establishes a computer model of the building’s architectural design and all mechanical, electrical, domestic hot water, plug load, and other energy-consuming systems and devices. The model incorporates the occupancy load and a schedule representing projected usage in order to predict energy use. This compliance path does not prescribe any technology or strategy, but requires a minimum reduction in total energy cost of 10% (5% for an existing building), compared to a baseline building with the same form and design but using systems compliant with ASHRAE 90.1-2007. You can earn additional LEED points through EAc1 for cost reductions of 12% and greater (8% for existing buildings). 


  • Option 2: Prescriptive Compliance Path: ASHRAE Advanced Energy Design Guide refers to design guides published by ASHRAE for office, school, warehouse, and retail projects. These guides outline strategies to reduce energy use by 30% from ASHRAE 90.1-2001 levels, or an amount equivalent to a 10%–14% reduction from the ASHRAE 90.1-2007 standard. If you choose this compliance path, become familiar with the list of prescriptive requirements and commit to meeting them. (See the AEDG checklist in the Documentation Toolkit.) 


  • Option 3: Prescriptive Compliance Path: Advanced Buildings Core Performance Guide is another, more basic prescriptive path. It’s a good option if your project is smaller than 100,000 ft2, cannot pursue Option 2 (because there is not an ASHRAE guide for the building type), is not a healthcare facility, lab, or warehouse—or you would rather not commit to the energy modeling required for Option 1. Your project can be of any other building type (such as office or retail). To meet the prerequisite, you must comply with all requirements within Sections 1 and 2 of the guide. If you choose this path, become familiar with the list of activities and requirements and commit to meeting them. (See Resources for a link to the Core Performance Guide and the Documentation Toolkit for the checklist of prescriptive items.)


  • EAc1: Optimize Energy Performance uses the same structure of Options 1–3, so it makes sense to think about the credit and the prerequisite together when making your choice. In EAc1, Option 1 offers the potential for far more points than Options 2 and 3, so if you see your project as a likely candidate for earning those points, Option 1 may be best.


  • Hotels, multifamily residential, and unconventional commercial buildings may not be eligible for either Option 2 or Option 3, because the prescriptive guidance of these paths was not intended for them. Complex projects, unconventional building types, off-grid projects, or those with high energy-reduction goals are better off pursuing Option 1, which provides the opportunity to explore more flexible and innovative efficiency strategies and to trade off high-energy uses for lower ones. 


  • If your project combines new construction and existing building renovation then whatever portion contains more than 50% of the floor area would determine the energy thresholds.


  • Options 2 and 3 are suitable for small, conventional building types that may not have as much to gain from detailed energy modeling with Option 1. 


  • Meeting the prescriptive requirements of Options 2 and 3 is not common practice and requires a high degree of attention to detail by your project team. (See the Documentation Toolkit for the Core Performance Guide Checklist.) These paths are more straightforward than Option 1, but don’t think of them as easy. 


  • Options 2 and 3 require additional consultant time from architects and MEP engineers over typical design commitment, which means higher upfront costs. 


  • Option 1 references the mandatory requirements of ASHRAE 90.1-2007, which are more stringent than earlier LEED rating systems that referred to ASHRAE 90.1-2004.


  • Option 1 energy simulation provides monthly and annual operating energy use and cost breakdowns. You can complete multiple iterations, refining energy-efficiency strategies each time. Payback periods can be quickly computed for efficiency strategies using their additional first costs. A building’s life is assumed to be 60 years. A payback period of five years is considered a very good choice, and 10 years is typically considered reasonable. Consult the OPR for your owners’ goals while selecting your efficiency strategies. 


  • Option 1 energy simulation often requires hiring an energy modeling consultant, adding a cost (although this ranges, it is typically on the order of $0.10–$0.50/ft2 depending on the complexity). However, these fees produce high value in terms of design and decision-making assistance, and especially for complex or larger projects can be well worth the investment. 


  • All compliance path options may require both the architectural and engineering teams to take some time in addition to project management to review the prescriptive checklists, fill out the LEED Online credit form, and develop the compliance document. 


  • Option 1: Whole Building Energy Simulation


  • The architect, mechanical engineer, and lighting designer need to familiarize themselves and confirm compliance with the mandatory requirements of ASHRAE 90.1-2007, sections 5–9.


  • Use simple computer tools like SketchUp and Green Building Studio that are now available with energy analysis plug-ins to generate a first-order estimate of building energy use within a climate context and to identify a design direction. Note that you may need to refer to different software may not be the one used to develop complete the whole building energy simulations necessary for LEED certification. 


  • Energy modeling can inform your project team from the start of design. Early on, review site climate data—such as temperature, humidity and wind, available from most energy software—as a team. Evaluate the site context and the microclimate, noting the effects of neighboring buildings, bodies of water, and vegetation. Estimate the distribution of energy across major end uses (such as space heating and cooling, lighting, plug loads, hot water, and any additional energy uses), targeting high-energy-use areas to focus on during design.  


  • Energy use breakdown pie chartUse a preliminary energy use breakdown like this one to identify target areas for energy savings.Perform preliminary energy modeling in advance of the schematic design phase kick-off meeting or design charrette. The energy use breakdown can help identify targets for energy savings and point toward possible alternatives. 


  • For existing buildings, the baseline energy model can reflect the pre-renovation features like rather than a minimally ASHRAE-compliant building. This will help you achieve additional savings in comparison with the baseline.


  • Projects generating renewable energy onsite should use Option 1 to best demonstrate EAp2 compliance and maximize points under EAc1. Other options are possible but won’t provide as much benefit. Like any other project, model the baseline case as a system compliant with ASHRAE 90.1-2007, using grid-connected electricity, and the design case is an “as-designed” system also using grid-connected electricity. You then plug in 100% onsite renewable energy in the final energy-cost comparison table, as required by the performance rating method (PRM) or the modeling protocol of ASHRRAE 90.1 2007, Appendix G. (Refer to the sample PRM tables in the Documentation Toolkit for taking account of onsite renewable energy.


  • LEED divides energy-using systems into two categories: 

    • (i) Regulated loads. Most prominent systems—space heating, cooling, ventilation and pumps, lighting, and hot water—are regulated by ASHRAE and LEED so are termed “regulated” loads. Your energy model can provide insights into the energy use of all these systems. 
    • (ii) Non-regulated loads are those which are not directly associated with creating a comfortable environment, but with plug loads for machines. These include elevators, kitchen equipment, office equipment, televisions, and activity-oriented lighting, such as in hospitals. Though these are very large energy loads, they are not regulated by ASHRAE 90.1 or by LEED. Energy savings from specifying better equipment is not counted in energy models. It is typically expected that these non-regulated loads contribute to 25% of energy use.

  • Besides energy modeling, you may need to use the exceptional calculation methodology (ECM) when any of the following situations occur: 

    • The energy software cannot carry out calculations for a specific systems like natural ventilation or unusual HVAC equipment.
    • Process loads are different in baseline and design cases and can influence total energy cost savings.
    • The proposed design can’t demonstrate savings with the modeling protocol and needs additional calculations. 

  • Some energy-modeling software tools have a daylight-modeling capability. Using the same model for both energy and IEQc8.1: Daylight and Views—Daylight can greatly reduce the cost of your modeling efforts.


  • Option 2: Prescriptive Compliance Path—ASHRAE Advanced Energy Design Guides


  • Provide a copy of the AEDG for office, retail, or warehouse, as applicable, to each team member as everyone, including the architect, mechanical and electrical engineers, lighting designer, and commissioning agents, are responsible for ensuring compliance. These are available to download free from the ASHRAE website. (See Resources.) 


  • Find your climate zone before attempting to meet any detailed prescriptive requirements. Climate zones vary by county, so be sure to select the right one. (See the Documentation Toolkit for a list of climate zones by county.)


  • Develop a checklist of all requirements, and assign responsible team members to accomplish them. Hold a meeting to walk the team through the AEDG checklist for your project’s climate zone. Clarify specific design goals and prescriptive requirements in the OPR for EAp1: Fundamental Commissioning.


  • Early access to the AEDG by each team member avoids last-minute changes that can have cascading, and costly, effects across many building systems. 


  • The AEDG prescriptive requirements include: 

    • a maximum allowable window-to-wall ratio;
    • continuous insulation on the outside of walls;
    • roofs and floor-slab minimum thermal performance;
    • minimum window and door thermal performance;
    • minimum boiler and chiller efficiencies;
    • and mandatory use economizers or heat recovery ventilation.

    If your project team is not comfortable following these guidelines, consider switching to Option 1, which gives you more flexibility. 


  • Although Option 2 is generally lower cost during the design phase than energy modeling, the compliance path is top heavy—it requires additional meeting time upfront for key design members. 


  • Option 3: Prescriptive—Advanced Buildings Core Performance Guide


  • Provide a copy of the New Buildings Institute Advanced Buildings: Core Performance Guide to each team member. The guide is available to download free from the NBI website. (See Resources.) 


  • The guide provides practical design assistance that can be used throughout the design process.


  • Walk your team through the project checklist to clarify design goals and prescriptive requirements. 


  • The guide provides an outline for approaching an energy-efficient design, in addition to a list of prescriptive measures. The first of its three sections emphasizes process and team interaction rather than specific building systems or features. Advise the owner to read through the guide in order to understand what is required of the architect and engineers. 


  • Section 1 in the guide focuses on best practices that benefit the project during the pre-design and schematic design stages, such as analyzing alternative designs and writing the owner’s project requirements (OPR). 


  • Section 2 of the Core Performance Guide describes architectural, lighting, and mechanical systems to be included. Section 3 is not required for EAp2 but includes additional opportunities for energy savings that can earn EAc1 points. 


  • The guide mandates that your team develop a minimum of three different design concepts to select from for best energy use.


  • Though they can be a little daunting at first glance, a majority of the guide’s requirements overlap with other LEED credits, such as EAp1: Fundamental Commissioning, IEQp1: Minimum Indoor Air Quality Performance, and IEQc6.1: Controllability of Systems—Lighting Controls


  • This compliance path is top-heavy due to upfront consultant time, but it provides adequate structure to ensure that your project is in compliance with the prerequisite requirements. For some projects it may be less expensive to pursue than Option 1. 


  • The energy model itself will not account for any change in plug loads from the baseline case, even if your project is making a conscious effort to purchase Energy Star or other efficient equipment. Any improvement made in plug loads must be documented separately, using the exceptional calculation methodology (ECM), as described in ASHRAE 90.1-2007. These calculations determine the design case energy cost compared to the baseline case. They are included in the performance rating method (PRM) table or directly in the baseline and design case model. 

Schematic Design

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  • The owner should now have finalized the OPR with the support of the architect, as part of the commissioning credits EAp1 and EAc3. The goals identified here will help your team identify energy-reduction and occupant-comfort strategies.


  • Consider a broad range of energy-efficiency strategies and tools, including passive solar, daylighting, cooling-load reduction, and natural ventilation to reduce heating and cooling loads. 


  • Develop the basis of design (BOD) document in conjunction with your mechanical engineer and architect for EAp1: Fundamental Commissioning, noting key design parameters to help strategize design direction as outlined in the OPR. 


  • The OPR and BOD serve the larger purpose of documenting the owner’s vision and your team’s ideas to meet those goals. The BOD is intended to be a work-in-progress and should be updated at all key milestones in your project. Writing the document gives you an opportunity to capture the owner’s goals, whether just to meet the prerequisite or to achieve points under EAc1.


  • Confirm that your chosen compliance path is the most appropriate for your project, and make any changes now. Following a review with the design team and owner, ensure that everyone is on board with contracting an energy modeler for Option 1 or meeting all the prescriptive requirements under Options 2 or 3. 


  • Sometimes teams change from Option 1 to Options 2 or 3 very late in the design phase for various reasons including not realizing the cost of energy modeling. Making that change is risky, though: the prescriptive paths are all-or-nothing—you must comply with every item, without exception. Evaluate each requirement and consult with the contractor and estimator to ensure the inclusion of all activities within project management. 


  • To avoid costly, last-minute decisions, develop a comprehensive, component-based cost model as a decision matrix for your project. The model will help establish additional cost requirements for each energy conservation measure. It will also illustrate cost reductions from decreased equipment size, construction rendered unnecessary by energy conservation measures, and reduced architectural provisions for space and equipment access. (See the Documentation Toolkit for an example.)


  • Use envelope design and passive strategies to reduce the heating and cooling loads prior to detailed design of HVAC systems. Passive strategies can reduce heating and cooling loads, giving the engineer more options, including smaller or innovative systems.


  • Load reduction requires coordinated efforts by all design members including the architect, lighting designer, interior designer, information-technology manager, and owner. 

    • Architects can choose the optimum building orientation, select the appropriate envelope system and design it to be tight, and configure programming to utilize passive strategies as much as possible. 
    • Lighting designers help by harvesting daylight, making appropriate fixture selections, minimizing lighting layouts (fewer fixtures), providing maximum controls and daylight and occupancy sensors to reduce wasted light. 
    • Interior designers are critical for selecting reflective finishes to enhance daylighting and specifying Energy Star appliances. 
    • IT specialists are important, especially in buildings with data centers, for selection of computers and data-processing equipment that reduce the power load as well as cooling. 

  • Involving facilities staff in the design process can further inform key design decisions, helping ensure successful operation and low maintenance costs.


  • Encourage your design team to brainstorm design innovations and energy-reduction strategies. This provides a communication link among team members so they can make informed decisions. 


  • More energy-efficient HVAC equipment can cost more relative to conventional equipment. However, by reducing heating and cooling loads through good passive design, the mechanical engineer can often reduce the size and cost of the system. Reduced system size can save money through:

    • smaller chillers or boilers;
    • smaller fans, used less frequently;
    • smaller pumps and auxiliary systems;
    • smaller ducts;
    • and less square footage devoted to mechanical systems.

  • Review case studies of similar energy-efficient buildings in the same climate to provide helpful hints for selecting energy-efficiency measures. For example, a building in a heating-dominated climate can often benefit from natural ventilation and free cooling during shoulder seasons. (See Resources for leading industry journals showcasing success stories around the country and internationally.)


  • The relationship between first costs and operating costs can be complex. For example, more efficient windows will be more expensive, but could reduce the size and cost of mechanical equipment. A more efficient HVAC system may be more expensive, but will reduce operating costs. Play around with variables and different strategies to get the right fit for the building and the owner’s goals as stated in the OPR.


  • Option 1: Whole Building Energy Simulation


  • Review and confirm compliance with the mandatory requirements of all the relevant sections of ASHRAE 90.1-2007


  • Trust your project’s energy modeling task to a mechanical firm with a proven track record in using models as design tools, and experience with your building type.


  • Contract an energy modeling team for the project. These services may be provided by the mechanical engineering firm on the design team or by an outside consultant. Software used for detailed energy use analysis and submitted for final LEED certification must be accepted by the regulatory authority with jurisdiction, and must comply with paragraph G2.2 of ASHRAE Standard 90.1-2007. Refer to Resources for a list of Department of Energy approved energy-analysis software that may be used for LEED projects.


  • Design team members, including the architect and mechanical engineer at a minimum, need to work together to identify a percentage improvement goal for project energy use over the ASHRAE 90.1-2007-compliant baseline model. The percentage should be at least 10% to meet the prerequisite. 


  • Plan on initiating energy modeling during the design process, and use it to inform your design—preferably executing several iterations of the design as you improve the modeled energy performance. 


  • Ask the modeling consultant to develop an annual energy-use breakdown—in order to pick the “fattest” targets for energy reduction. A typical energy-use breakdown required for LEED submission and ASHRAE protocol includes: 

    • lighting;
    • space heating;
    • space cooling;
    • domestic hot water;
    • additional installed heat recovery, refrigeration, or heat-rejection systems;
    • ventilation fans and auxiliary pumps;
    • and equipment and plug loads. 

  • Identify critical areas in which to reduce loads. For example, in a data center, the plug loads are the largest energy load. Small changes in lighting density might bring down the energy use but represent only a small fraction of annual energy use. 


  • Don't forget that LEED (following ASHRAE) uses energy cost and not straight energy when it compares your design to a base case. That's important because you might choose to use a system that burns natural gas instead of electricity and come out with a lower cost, even though the on-site energy usage in kBtus or kWhs is higher. Generally you have to specify the same fuel in your design case and in the base case, however, so you can't simply switch fuels to show a cost savings


  • Explore and analyze design alternatives for energy use analyses to compare the cost-effectiveness of your design choices. For example, do you get better overall performance from a better window or from adding a PV panel? Will demand-control ventilation outperform increased ceiling insulation?


  • Simple, comparative energy analyses of conceptual design forms are useful ways to utilize an energy model at this stage. Sample scenarios include varying the area of east-facing windows and looking at 35% versus 55% glazing. Each scenario can be ranked by absolute energy use to make informed decisions during the design stage. 


  • If your project is using BIM software, the model can be plugged into the energy analysis software to provide quick, real-time results and support better decisions. 


  • Model development should be carried out following the PRM from ASHRAE 90.1-2007, Appendix G, and the LEED 2009 Design and Construction Reference Guide, Table in EAc1 and CS Appendix 2: Energy Modeling Guidelines. In case of a conflict between ASHRAE and LEED guidelines, follow LEED.


  • Projects using district energy systems have special requirements. For EAp2, the proposed building must achieve the 10% energy savings without counting the effects of the district generation system. To earn points in EAc1 you can take advantage of the district system’s efficiency, but you have to run the energy model again to claim those benefits (see EAc1 for details). 


  • While you could run the required energy model at the end of the design development phase, simply to demonstrate your prerequisite compliance, you don’t get the most value that way in terms of effort and expense. Instead, do it early in the design phase, and run several versions as you optimize your design. Running the model also gives you an opportunity to make improvements if your project finds itself below the required 10% savings threshold.


  • The baseline model is the designed building with mechanical systems specified in ASHRAE 90.1-2007, Appendix G, for the specific building type, with a window-to-wall ratio at a maximum of 40%, and minimally code-compliant specifications for the envelope, lighting, and mechanical components. It can be developed as soon as preliminary drawings are completed. The baseline is compared to the design case to provide a percentage of reduction in annual energy use. To avoid any bias from orientation, you need to run the baseline model in each of the four primary directions, and the average serves as your final baseline figure. 


  • The design-case is modeled using the schematic design, orientation, and proposed window-to-wall ratio—¬the model will return design-case annual energy costs. Earn points by demonstrating percentage reductions in annual energy costs from the design to the baseline case. EAp2 is achieved if the design case is 10% lower than the baseline in new construction (or 5% less in existing building renovations). 


  • Provide as much project and design detail to the modeler as possible. A checklist is typically developed by the energy modeler, listing all the construction details of the walls, roof, slabs, windows, mechanical systems, equipment efficiencies, occupancy load, and schedule of operations. Any additional relevant information or design changes should be brought to the modeler’s attention as soon as possible. The more realistic the energy model is, the more accurate the energy use figure, leading to better help with your design.


  • Invite energy modelers to project meetings. An experienced modeler can often assist in decision-making during design meetings, even without running complete models each time. 


  • All known plug loads must be included in the model. The baseline and design-case models assume identical plug loads. If your project is deliberately attempting to reduce plug loads, demonstrate this by following the exceptional calculation method (ECM), as described in ASHRAE 90.1-2007, G2.5. Incorporate these results in the model to determine energy savings. 


  • For items outside the owner’s control—like lighting layout, fans and pumps—the parameters for the design and baseline models must be identical.


  • It can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks to generate meaningful energy modeling results. Schedule the due dates for modeling results so that they can inform your design process.


  • Review the rate structure from your electrical utility. The format can inform your team of the measures likely to be most effective in reducing energy costs, especially as they vary over season, peak load, and additional charges beyond minimum energy use.


  • Performing a cost-benefit analysis in conjunction with energy modeling can determine payback times for all the energy strategies, helping the iterative design process.


  • Using energy modeling only to check compliance after the design stage wastes much of the value of the service, and thus your investment.


  • Option 2: Prescriptive—ASHRAE Advanced Energy Design Guides 


  • The architect and mechanical engineer should carefully read the applicable ASHRAE Advanced Energy Design Guide for office, warehouse, or retail projects, as applicable. 


  • Keep the owner abreast of the design decisions dictated by the standard. Fill in the team-developed checklist, within the climate zone table’s prescribed requirements, with appropriate envelope improvements, system efficiencies, and a configuration that meets the standard requirements. 


  • As a prescriptive path, this option relies heavily on following the requirement checklist, which is used throughout the design process to track progress. To assist design development, provide all critical team members—not limited to the architect, mechanical and electrical engineers, and lighting designer—with a checklist highlighting their appointed tasks.


  • The architect, mechanical engineer, and lighting designer need to discuss each requirement and its design ramifications. Hold these meetings every six to eight weeks to discuss progress and make sure all requirements are being met.


  • Core and Shell projects must mandate the requirements for the tenant spaces within a tenant guideline document such as one developed for SSc9: Tenant Design and Construction Guidelines. 


  • Confirm that your project team is comfortable with following all the prescribed requirements. If not, switch to Option 1: Whole Building Energy Simulation. 


  • The LEED Online credit form does not specify how to document each prescriptive requirement because they are so different for each project; it only requires a signed confirmation by the MEP for meeting AEDG requirements. You still have to provide documentation. Submit your checklist of requirements, and supporting information for each item, through LEED Online to make your case. If your project fails to meet even one requirement, it will fail to earn the prerequisite, thus jeopardizing LEED certification.  


  • Although energy modeling consultant costs are avoided by this option, additional staff time will be required to document and track compliance status, as compared with conventional projects.


  • Energy efficiency measures prescribed by the guide can be perceived as additional costs in comparison with conventional projects. However, they are easy to implement and are cost-effective pn the whole.


  • Option 3: Prescriptive Compliance Path—Advanced Buildings Core Performance Guide 


  • Become familiar with the Core Performance Guide early in the design phase to know the multiple requirements and all requisite documents.


  • Note that the guide demands additional time, attention, and integrated process from the design team as compared to conventional projects. It’s not just a list of prescriptive requirements, but a prescribed process for achieving energy efficiency goals. LEED Online documentation requires proof of all steps outlined in Sections 1 and 2, including three conceptual design options and meeting minutes. The project manager, architect, and mechanical engineer should read the complete Core Performance Guide carefully to know beforehand the prescriptive requirements in Sections 1 and 2. 


  • The project manager must take responsibility for ensuring that the requirement checklist is on track.


  • For Section 3, the design team needs to identify three or more of the listed strategies as possible targets for the project. 


  • Create a checklist of requirements and assign a responsible party to each item. 


  • The Core Performance Guide requires an integrated design contributed by the architect, mechanical and electrical engineers, and lighting designer. The project manager must take responsibility for shepherding and documenting the collaborative process to demonstrate compliance. 


  • A long documentation list can be overwhelming for your team, so create a detailed checklist with tasks delegated to individual team members, allowing each member to focus on assigned tasks. The checklist can function as a status tracking document and, finally, the deliverable for LEED Online.

Design Development

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  • The architect and engineer, and other project team members, continue to develop a high-performance building envelope with efficient mechanical and lighting systems. 


  • Constant communication and feedback among project team members, owner, and if possible, operational staff, during design development can minimize construction as well as operational costs and keep your project on schedule. 


  • If you change or go through value-engineering on any specifications, such as the solar-heat gain coefficient of glazing, for example, be aware of impacts on mechanical system sizing. Making changes like this might not pay off as much as it first appears.


  • Consider using building information modeling (BIM) tools to keep design decisions up to date and well documented for all team members.


  • Schedule delays can be avoided if all team members share their ideas and update documents during the design development process. 


  • Option 1: Whole Building Energy Simulation


  • The modeler completes the energy analysis of the selected design and system and offers alternative scenarios for discussion. The modeler presents the energy cost reduction results to the team, identifying the LEED threshold achieved.


  • It’s helpful for the energy modeling report to include a simple payback analysis to assist the owner in making an informed decision on the operational savings of recommended features. 


  • Demonstrating reductions in non-regulated loads requires a rigorous definition of the baseline case. The loads must be totally equivalent, in terms of functionality, to the proposed design case. For example, reducing the number of computers in the building does not qualify as a legitimate reduction in non-regulated loads. However, the substitution of laptops for desktop computers, and utilization of flat-screen displays instead of CRTs for the same number of computers, may qualify as a reduction.


  • Residential and hospitality projects that use low-flow showers, lavatories, and kitchen sinks (contributing to WEp1) benefit from lower energy use due to reduced overall demand for hot water. However, for energy-savings calculations, these are considered process loads that must be modeled as identical in baseline and design cases, or you have the choice of demonstrating the savings with ECM for process loads. 


  • Perform daylight calculations in conjunction with energy modeling to balance the potentially competing goals of more daylight versus higher solar-heat gain resulting in high cooling loads. 


  • If your project is pursuing renewable energy, the energy generated is accounted for by using the PRM. These results provide information about whether the energy is contributing to EAc2: Onsite Renewable Energy. 


  • A cost-benefit analysis can help the owner understand the return on investment of big-ticket, energy-conserving equipment that lowers operating energy bills with a quick payback. 


  • Complete at least half of the energy modeling effort by the end of the design development stage. Help the design team to finalize strategy through intensive, early efforts in energy modeling. Once the team has a design direction, the modeler can develop a second model during the construction documents phase for final confirmation. 


  • If pursuing ECM for non-regulated loads, calculate energy saving for each measure separately if you are, for example, installing an energy-efficient elevator instead of a typical one so that the reduction would contribute to total building energy savings. Calculate the anticipated energy use of the typical elevator in kBTUs or kWh. Using the same occupancy load, calculate the energy use of the efficient elevator. Incorporate the savings into design case energy use within the PRM. Refer to the ECM strategy for detailed calculation guidelines. 


  • Option 2: Prescriptive Compliance Path—ASHRAE Advanced Energy Design Guides 


  • Ensure that all prescriptive requirements are incorporated into the design by the end of the design development stage.


  • Revisit the Advanced Energy Design Guides (AEDG) checklist to ensure that the design meets the prescriptive requirements.


  • Option 3: Prescriptive Compliance Path—Advanced Buildings Core Performance Guide


  • The mechanical engineer, lighting consultant, and architect revisit the checklist for an update on the requirements and how they are being integrated into the design. All prescriptive requirements should be specifically incorporated into the design by the end of the design development phase. 


  • The mechanical engineer and architect track the status of each requirement.


  • While the LEED Online credit form does not require detailed documentation for each Core Performance Guide requirement, it is important that each item be documented as required and reviewed by the rest of the team to confirm compliance, especially as further documentation may be requested by during review. Your design team should work with the owner to identify cost-effective strategies from Section 3 that can be pursued for the project. 


  • The architect and HVAC engineer should agree on the design, working with the cost estimator and owner.

Construction Documents

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  • Construction documents clearly detail the architectural and mechanical systems that address energy-efficiency strategies.  


  • Confirm that specifications and the bid package integrate all equipment and activities associated with the project. 


  • If the project goes through value engineering, refer to the OPR and BOD to ensure that no key comfort, health, productivity, daylight, or life-cycle cost concerns are sacrificed.


  • During the budget estimating phase, the project team may decide to remove some energy-saving strategies that have been identified as high-cost items during the value-engineering process. However, it is very important to help the project team understand that these so-called add-ons are actually integral to the building’s market value and the owner’s goals. 


  • Removing an atrium, for example, due to high cost may provide additional saleable floor area, but may also reduce daylight penetration while increasing the lighting and conditioning loads.  


  • Option 1: Whole Building Energy Simulation


  • Although this prerequisite is a design-phase submittal, it may make sense to submit it, along with EAc1, after construction. Your project could undergo changes during construction that might compel a new run of the energy model to obtain the latest energy-saving information. Waiting until the completion of construction ensures that the actual designed project is reflected in your energy model.


  • Create a final energy model based completely on construction document drawings—to confirm actual energy savings as compared to ASHRAE 90.1-2007 requirements. An energy model based on the construction documents phase will provide realistic energy-cost savings and corresponding LEED points likely to be earned. 


  • Make sure the results fit the LEED Online credit form requirements. For example, the unmet load hours have to be less than 300 and process loads will raise a red flag if they’re not approximately 25%. If any of the results are off mark, take time to redo the model. Time spent in design saves more later on in the LEED review process. 


  • Option 2: Prescriptive Compliance Path—ASHRAE Advanced Energy Design Guides


  • Finalize all design decisions and confirm that you’ve met all of the prescriptive requirements. Your team must document the checklist with relevant project drawings, including wall sections, specifications, and the MEP drawing layout.


  • Value engineering and other factors can result in design changes that eliminate certain energy features relevant to the prerequisite. As this compliance path is prescriptive, your project cannot afford to drop even one prescribed item.


  • Option 3: Prescriptive Compliance Path—Advanced Buildings Core Performance Guide


  • Finalize all design decisions and confirm that you’ve met all of the prescriptive requirements. Your team must document the checklist with relevant project drawings, including wall sections, specifications, and the MEP drawing layout.


  • Value engineering and other factors can result in design changes that eliminate certain energy features relevant to the credit. As this compliance path is prescriptive, your project cannot afford to drop even one listed item. Although perceived as high-cost, prescriptive requirements lower energy costs during operation and provide a simple payback structure. 

Construction

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  • The architect and mechanical engineer review the shop drawings to confirm the installation of the selected systems. 


  • The commissioning agent and the contractor conduct functional testing of all mechanical equipment in accordance with EAp1: Fundamental Commissioning and EAc3: Enhanced Commissioning. 


  • Find your Energy Star rating with EPA’s Target Finder tool if your building type is in the database. Input your project location, size, and number of occupants, computers, and kitchen appliances. The target may be a percentage energy-use reduction compared to a code-compliant building, or “anticipated energy use” data from energy model results. Add information about your fuel use and rate, then click to “View Results.” Your Target Finder score should be documented at LEED Online.


  • Plan for frequent site visits by the mechanical designer and architect during construction and installation to make sure construction meets the design intent and specifications. 


  • Emphasize team interaction and construction involvement when defining the project scope with key design team members. Contractor and designer meetings can help ensure correct construction practices and avoid high change-order costs for the owner. 


  • Subcontractors may attempt to add a premium during the bidding process for any unusual or unknown materials or practices, so inform your construction bidders of any atypical design systems at the pre-bid meeting.


  • Option 1: Whole Building Energy Simulation


  • The energy modeler ensures that any final design changes have been incorporated into the updated model.


  • Upon finalizing of the design, the responsible party or energy modeler completes the LEED Online submittal with building design inputs and a PRM result energy summary. 


  • Although EAp2 is a design phase submittals, it may make sense to submit it (along with EAc1) after construction. Your project could undergo changes during construction that might require a new run of the energy model. Waiting until the completion of construction ensures that your actual designed project is reflected. On the other hand, it gives you less opportunity to respond to questions that might come up during a LEED review. 


  • Include supporting documents like equipment cut sheets, specifications and equipment schedules to demonstrate all energy efficiency measures claimed in the building. 


  • It common for the LEED reviewers to make requests for more information. Go along with the process—it doesn’t mean that you’ve lost the credit. Provide as much information for LEED Online submittal as requested and possible. 


  • Option 2: Prescriptive Compliance Path—ASHRAE Advanced Energy Design Guides (AEDG)


  • The design team completes the LEED Online documentation, signing off on compliance with the applicable AEDG, and writing the narrative report on the design approach and key highlights.


  • During LEED submission, the project team needs to make an extra effort to support the prerequisite with the completed checklist and the required documents. Although the LEED rating system does not list detailed documentation, it is best practice to send in supporting documents for the prescriptive requirements from the AEDG. The supporting documents should include relevant narratives, wall sections, mechanical drawings, and calculations. 


  • Although the LEED Online sign-off does not include a checklist of AEDG requirements, it assumes that the team member is confirming compliance with all detailed requirements of the guide. 


  • Option 3: Prescriptive Compliance Path—Advanced Building Core Performance Guide


  • The design team completes the LEED Online credit form, signing off on compliance with the Core Performance Guide, and writing the narrative report on the design approach and key highlights.


  • During LEED submission, your project team needs to make an extra effort to support the prerequisite with the completed checklist and the required documents. Although not every requirement may be mentioned in the LEED documentation, the supporting documents need to cover all requirements with narratives, wall sections, mechanical drawings, and calculations. 


  • Many of this option’s compliance documents are common to other LEED credits or design documents, thus reducing duplicated efforts. 

Operations & Maintenance

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  • Develop an operations manual with input from the design team in collaboration with facility management and commissioning agent if pursuing EAc3: Enhanced Commissioning. 


  • The benefit of designing for energy efficiency is realized only during operations and maintenance. Record energy use to confirm that your project is saving energy as anticipated. If you are not pursuing EAc5: Measurement and Verification, you can implement tracking procedures such as reviewing monthly energy bills or on-the-spot metering.


  • Some energy efficiency features may require special training for operations and maintenance personnel. For example, cogeneration and building automation systems require commissioning and operator training. Consider employing a trained professional to aid in creating operation manuals for specialty items. 


  • Energy-efficiency measures with a higher first cost often provide large savings in energy use and operational energy bills. These credit requirements are directly tied to the benefits of efficient, low-cost operations.

  • USGBC

    Excerpted from LEED 2009 for Core and Shell Development

    EA Prerequisite 2: Minimum energy performance

    Required

    Intent

    To establish the minimum level of energy efficiency for the proposed building and systems to reduce environmental and economic impacts associated with excessive energy use.

    Requirements

    Option 1. Whole building energy simulation

    Demonstrate a 10% improvement in the proposed building performance rating for new buildings, or a 5% improvement in the proposed building performance rating for major renovations to existing buildings, compared with the baseline building performanceBaseline building performance is the annual energy cost for a building design, used as a baseline for comparison with above-standard design. rating.

    Calculate the baseline building performance rating according to the building performance rating method in Appendix G of ANSI/ASHRAE/IESNA Standard 90.1-2007 (with errata but without addenda1) using a computer simulation model for the whole building project. Projects outside the U.S. may use a USGBC approved equivalent standard2.

    Appendix G of Standard 90.1-2007 requires that the energy analysis done for the building performance rating method include all energy costs associated with the building project. To achieve points using this credit, the proposed design must meet the following criteria:

    • Comply with the mandatory provisions (Sections 5.4, 6.4, 7.4, 8.4, 9.4 and 10.4) in Standard 90.1-2007 (with errata but without addenda1) or USGBC approved equivalent.
    • Inclusion of all the energy costs within and associated with the building project.
    • Compare against a baseline building that complies with Appendix G of Standard 90.1-2007 (with errata but without addenda1) or USGBC approved equivalent. The default process energy cost is 25% of the total energy cost for the baseline building. If the building’s process energy cost is less than 25% of the baseline building energy cost, the LEED submittal must include documentation substantiating that process energy inputs are appropriate.

    For the purpose of this analysis, process energy is considered to include, but is not limited to, office and general miscellaneous equipment, computers, elevators and escalators,kitchen cooking and refrigeration, laundry washing and drying, lighting exempt from the lighting power allowance (e.g., lighting integral to medical equipment) and other (e.g., waterfall pumps).

    Regulated (non-process) energy includes lighting (for the interior, parking garage, surface parking, façade, or building grounds, etc. except as noted above), heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) (for space heating, space cooling, fans, pumps, toilet exhaust, parking garage ventilation, kitchen hood exhaust, etc.), and service water heating for domestic or space heating purposes.

    Process loads must be identical for both the baseline building performance rating and the proposed building performance rating. However, project teams may follow the exceptional calculation method (ANSI/ASHRAE/IESNA Standard 90.1-2007 G2.5) or USGBC approved equivalent to document measures that reduce process loads. Documentation of process load energy savings must include a list of the assumptions made for both the base and the proposed design, and theoretical or empirical information supporting these assumptions.

    Projects in California may use Title 24-2005, Part 6 in place of ANSI/ASHRAE/IESNA Standard 90.1-2007 for Option 1.

    OR

    Option 2. Prescriptive compliance path: ASHRAE Advanced Energy Design Guide

    Comply with the prescriptive measures of the ASHRAE Advanced Energy Design Guide appropriate to the project scope, outlined below. Project teams must comply with all applicable criteria as established in the Advanced Energy Design Guide for the climate zoneOne of five climatically distinct areas, defined by long-term weather conditions which affect the heating and cooling loads in buildings. The zones were determined according to the 45-year average (1931-1975) of the annual heating and cooling degree-days (base 65 degrees Fahrenheit). An individual building was assigned to a climate zone according to the 45-year average annual degree-days for its National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Division. in which the building is located. Projects outside the U.S. may use ASHRAE/ASHRAE/IESNA Standard 90.1-2007 Appendices B and D to determine the appropriate climate zone.

    Path 1. ASHRAE Advanced Energy Design Guide for Small Office Buildings 2004

    The building must meet the following requirements:

    • Less than 20,000 square feet (1,800 square meters).
    • Office occupancy.
    Path 2. ASHRAE Advanced Energy Design Guide for Small Retail Buildings 2006

    The building must meet the following requirements:

    • Less than 20,000 square feet (1,800 square meters).
    • Retail occupancy.
    Path 3. ASHRAE Advanced Energy Design Guide for Small Warehouses and Self Storage Buildings 2008

    The building must meet the following requirements:

    • Less than 50,000 square feet (4,600 square meters).
    • Warehouse or self-storage occupancy.

    OR

    Option 3. Prescriptive compliance path: Advanced Buildings™ Core Performance™ Guide

    Comply with the prescriptive measures identified in the Advanced Buildings™ Core Performance™ Guide developed by the New Buildings Institute. The building must meet the following requirements:

    • Less than 100,000 square feet (9,300 square meters).
    • Comply with Section 1: Design Process Strategies, and Section 2: Core Performance Requirements.
    • Health care, warehouse and laboratory projects are ineligible for this path.

    Projects outside the U.S. may use ASHRAE/ASHRAE/IESNA Standard 90.1-2007 Appendices B and D to determine the appropriate climate zone.

    1Project teams wishing to use ASHRAE approved addenda for the purposes of this prerequisite may do so at their discretion. Addenda must be applied consistently across all LEED credits.

    2 Projects outside the U.S. may use an alternative standard to ANSI/ASHRAE/IESNA Standard 90.1-2007 if it is approved by USGBC as an equivalent standard using the process identified in the LEED 2009 Green Building Design and Construction Global ACP Reference Guide Supplement.

    Potential Technologies & Strategies

    Design the building envelope and systems to meet baseline requirements. Use a computer simulation model to assess the energy performance and identify the most cost-effective energy efficiency measures. Quantify energy performance compared with a baseline building.

    If local code has demonstrated quantitative and textual equivalence following, at a minimum, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) standard process for commercial energy code determination, then the results of that analysis may be used to correlate local code performance with ANSI/ASHRAE/IESNA Standard 90.1-2007. Details on the DOE process for commercial energy code determination can be found at http://www.energycodes.gov/implement/
    determinations_com.stm.

    FOOTNOTES

    1 Project teams wishing to use ASHRAE approved addenda for the purposes of this prerequisite may do so at their discretion. Addenda must be applied consistently across all LEED credits.

    2 Projects outside the U.S. may use an alternative standard to ANSI/ASHRAE/IESNA Standard 90.1‐2007 if it is approved by USGBC as an equivalent standard using the process located at www.usgbc.org/leedisglobal

Organizations

New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA)

Useful web resource with information on local/regional incentives for energy-efficiency programs.


Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE)

This database shows state-by-state incentives for energy efficiency, renewable energy, and other green building measures. Included in this database are incentives on demand control ventilation, ERVs, and HRVs.


American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy

ACEEE is a nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing energy efficiency through technical and policy assessments; advising policymakers and program managers; collaborating with businesses, public interest groups, and other organizations; and providing education and outreach through conferences, workshops, and publications. 


New Buildings Institute

The New Buildings Institute is a nonprofit, public-benefits corporation dedicated to making buildings better for people and the environment. Its mission is to promote energy efficiency in buildings through technology research, guidelines, and codes.


U.S. Department of Energy, Building Energy Codes Program

The Building Energy Codes program provides comprehensive resources for states and code users, including news, compliance software, code comparisons, and the Status of State Energy Codes database. The database includes state energy contacts, code status, code history, DOE grants awarded, and construction data. The program is also updating the COMcheck-EZ compliance tool to include ANSI/ASHRAE/IESNA 90.1–2007. This compliance tool includes the prescriptive path and trade-off compliance methods. The software generates appropriate compliance forms as well. 


Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute: Daylighting Resources

Research center at RPI provides access to a wide range of  daylighting resources, case studies, design tools, reports, publications and more.


IBPSA

International association of energy modelers with various national and local chapters. 


Architecture 2030

Non-profit organization aiming at design community to increase collaboration for designing energy efficient buildings.


Low Impact Hydropower Institute

The Low Impact Hydropower Institute is a non-profit organization and certification body that establishes criteria against which to judge the environmental impacts of hydropower projects in the United States.


U.S. Department of Energy Building Technologies Program

The Building Technologies Program (BTP) provides resources for commercial and residential building components, energy modeling tools, building energy codes, and appliance standards including the Buildings Energy Data Book, High Performance Buildings Database and Software Tools Directory.

Web Tools

Energy Analysis Tools

This website discusses the step-by-step process for energy modeling.


Advanced Buildings Technologies and Practices

This online resource, supported by Natural Resources Canada, presents energy-efficient technologies, strategies for commercial buildings, and pertinent case studies.


U.S. Department of Energy, Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy

This website is a comprehensive resource for U.S. Department of Energy information on energy efficiency and renewable energy and provides access to energy links and downloadable documents. 


U.S. EPA, Combined Heat and Power Partnership

Information on cogenerationThe simultaneous production of electric and thermal energy in on-site, distributed energy systems; typically, waste heat from the electricity generation process is recovered and used to heat, cool, or dehumidify building space. Neither generation of electricity without use of the byproduct heat, nor waste-heat recovery from processes other than electricity generation is included in the definition of cogeneration., also called combined heat and power, is available from EPA through the CHPCombined heat and power (CHP), or cogeneration, generates both electrical power and thermal energy from a single fuel source. Partnership. The CHP Partnership is a voluntary program seeking to reduce the environmental impact of power generation by promoting the use of CHP. The Partnership works closely with energy users, the CHP industry, state and local governments, and other clean energy stakeholders to facilitate the development of new projects and to promote their environmental and economic benefits. 


Advanced Energy Design Guides

Free download of AHSRAE energy savings guide, use for Option 2.


Lawrence Berkeley Lab: Building Technologies Department

Research warehouse for strategies and case studies of energy efficiency in buildings.


Efficient Windows Collaborative

An online window selection tool with performance characteristics.


Whole Building Design Guide (WBDG)

This website lays out design process for developing an energy efficient building.


AIA Sustainability 2030 Toolkit

This website discusses ways to improve design for lower energy demand as they relate to the AIA 2030 challenge.


Windows for High-Performance Commercial Buildings

This website includes discussion of design issues, materials and assemblies, window design decisions and case studies. 


California Integrated Waste Management Board: Environmental and Economic Assessment Tools

This site lists multiple web-based and downloadable tools that can be used for energy analyses.


DEER: Database for Energy Efficient Resource

This database is maintainted by the California Energy Commission and lists resources related to energy use and efficiency. 


Energy Design Resources - CA

Energy design tools are available to be used for free online or available to download.


Building Materials Property Table

This website lists performance characteristics for various envelope materials. 


One Building

This is an online forum of discussion for energy efficiency, computer model software users.


EPA’s Target Finder

Target Finder is a goal-setting tool that informs your design team about their project’s energy performance as compared to a national database of projects compiled by the EPA.


Building Energy Software Tools Directory

This directory provides information on 406 building software tools for evaluating energy efficiency, renewable energy, and sustainability in buildings.


EnergyPlus Format Weather Data Resources

Weather data for more than 2100 locations are available in EnergyPlus weather format.


DOE-2 Format Weather Data Resources

Weather data for U.S. and Non-U.S. locations in BIN format.


BEMbook – Building Energy Modeling Book

A web-based, free content project by IBPSA-USA to develop an online compendium of the domain of Building Energy Modeling (BEM). The intention is to delineate a cohesive body of knowledge for building energy modeling.

Technical Guides

Advanced Buildings Core Performance Guide

A guide for achieving energy efficiency in new commercial buildings, referenced in the LEED energy credits.


ENERGY STAR Building Upgrade Manual

This manual is a strategic guide for planning and implementing energy-saving building upgrades. It provides general methods for reviewing and adjusting system control settings, plus procedures for testing and correcting calibration and operation of system components such as sensors, actuators, and controlled devices.


COMNET Commercial Buildings Energy Modeling Guidelines and Procedures

This manual offers guidance to building energy modelers, ensuring technically rigorous and credible assessment of energy performance of commercial and multifamily residential buildings. It provides a streamlined process that can be used with various existing modeling software and systems, across a range of programs.


2009 ASHRAE Handbook of Fundamentals, Chapter 19

Chapter 19 is titled, “Energy Estimating and Modeling Methods”. The chapter discusses methods for estimating energy use for two purposes: modeling for building and HVAC system design and associated design optimization (forward modeling), and modeling energy use of existing buildings for establishing baselines and calculating retrofit savings (data-driven modeling).


Treatment of Distric or Campus Thermal Energy in LEED v2 and LEED 2009 (Updated August 13, 2010)

Required reference document for DES systems in LEED energy credits.

Publications

ANSI/ASHRAE/IESNA Standard 90.1–2007 User’s Manual (ASHRAE).

ASHRAE writes standards for the purpose of establishing consensus for: 1) methods of test for use in commerce and 2) performance criteria for use as facilitators with which to guide the industry.


Energy Information Administration

Energy statistics from the U.S. government.


New Buildings Institute— Advanced Lighting Guidelines: 2003 Edition

This guide includes instructional graphics and superior lighting design solutions for varying types of buildings and spaces, from private offices to big box retail stores.


Building Energy Performance News

This website offers information on energy efficiency in buildings, highlighting success stories, breakthrough technology, and policy updates.


GreenSource magazine

Bimonthly publication on case studies and new technologies for energy efficiency in commercial buildings. 


AIA Local Leaders in Sustainability: Green Incentives

AIA publication highlighting local and state green building incentives.


Federal Research and Devlopment Agenda for Net-Zero Energy, High-Performance Green Buildings

2008 guidelines and performance goals from the National Science and Technology Council.


Energy Design Resources (EDR) Simulation Guidebooks

Information about energy-efficient building practices available in EDR's Design Briefs, Design Guidelines, Case Studies, and Technology Overviews.

Software Tools

Building Energy Software Tools Directory

DOE tools for whole building analyses, including energy simulation, load calculation, renewable energy, retrofit analysis and green buildings tools.


Building and Fire Research Laboratory

This is a computer program that predicts the one-dimensional transfer of heat and moisture.


DesignBuilder and EnergyPlus

DesignBuilder is a Graphical User Interface to EnergyPlus. DesignBuilder is a complete 3-D graphical design modeling and energy use simulation program providing information on building energy consumption, CO2Carbon dioxide emissions, occupant comfort, daylighting effects, ASHRAE 90.1 and LEED compliance, and more.


Integrated Environmental Solutions – Virtual Environment Pro / Apache

IES VE Pro is an integrated computing environment encompassing a wide range of tasks in building design including model building, energy/carbon, solar, light, HVAC, climate, airflow, value/cost and egress.

Advanced Energy Design Guide Checklist

Option 2: Prescriptive Compliance Path

Use this checklist of prescriptive requirements (with sample filled out) to have an at-a-glance picture of AEDG requirements for Option 2, and how your project is meeting them.

Advanced Buildings Core Performance Guide (CPG) Checklist

Option 3

This spreadsheet lists all the requirements for meeting EAp2 – Option 3 and and EAc1 – Option 3. You can review the requirements, assign responsible parties and track status of each requirement through design and construction.

Energy Simulation Narrative

Option 1

Sometimes the energy simulation software being used to demonstrate compliance with Option 1 doesn't allow you to simulate key aspects of the design. In this situation you'll need to write a short sample narrative, as in these examples, describing the situation and how it was handled.

Equipment and Product Cut Sheets

All Options

In your supporting documentation, include spec sheets of equipment described in the Option 1 energy model or Options 2–3 prescriptive paths.

PRM Table

Option 1

This is a sample building energy performance and cost summary using the Performance Rating Method (PRM). Electricity and natural gas use should be broken down by end uses including space heating, space cooling, lights, task lights, ventilation fans, pumps, and domestic hot water, at the least.

Tariff Charges

Option 1

Option 1 calculates savings in annual energy cost, but utility prices may vary over the course of a year. This sample demonstrates how to document varying electricity tariffs.

Modeled Energy Reductions

Option 1

This graph, for an office building design, shows how five overall strategies were implemented to realize energy savings of 30% below an ASHRAE baseline. (From modeling conducted by Synergy Engineering, PLLC.)

U.S. Climate Zones

All Options

The climate zones shown on this Department of Energy map are relevant to all options for this credit.

Appendix G Fan Power Calculator

Option 1

This spreadsheet, provided here by 7group, can be used to calculate the fan volume and fan power for Appendix G models submitted for EAp2/EAc1.  Tabs are included to cover both ASHRAE 90.1-2004 and 90.1-2007 Appendix G methodologies.

LEED Online Forms: CS-2009 EA

The following links take you to the public, informational versions of the dynamic LEED Online forms for each CS-2009 EA credit. You'll need to fill out the live versions of these forms on LEED
Online
for each credit you hope to earn.

These links are posted by LEEDuser with USGBC's permission. USGBC has certain usage restrictsions for these forms; for more information, visit LEED Online and click "Sample Forms Download."

The following links take you to the public, informational versions of the dynamic LEED Online forms for each CS-2009 EA credit. You'll need to fill out the live versions of these forms on LEED
Online
for each credit you hope to earn.

These links are posted by LEEDuser with USGBC's permission. USGBC has certain usage restrictsions for these forms; for more information, visit LEED Online and click "Sample Forms Download."

Design Submittal

PencilDocumentation for this credit can be part of a Design Phase submittal.

859 Comments

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Panupant Phapant SCG Cement - Building Materials Co.,Ltd.
Oct 21 2014
LEEDuser Member
103 Thumbs Up

Energy saving in the hot water system with low flow fixture

Dear All

We would like to know whether EAp2 and EAc1, LEED NC Version 2009, allow to count energy saving in hot water system by using low-flow shower heads as the ASHRAE 90.1 Appendix G state that "Service hot-water usage can be demonstrated to be reduced by documented water conservation measures that reduce physical volume of service water required". Examples include low-flow shower heads. Such reduction shall be demonstrated by calculations".

For example, the baseline flow rate of the shower head from WEp2 is 2.5.
gpm. If we use the shower head with flow rate of 1.6 gpm. We can count energy saving for the hot water system from the reduced flow rate of 0.9 gpm.

Thank you

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Oct 22 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

Yes you can . There is a calculation you can use within the new Section 1.4 tables.

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Panupant Phapant SCG Cement - Building Materials Co.,Ltd. Oct 24 2014 LEEDuser Member 103 Thumbs Up

Dear Marcus
Thank you very much. Am I corrected that I can adopt the shower head flow rate of 2.5 gmp for the baseline of the domestic hot water system

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David Hubka Director - Operations Transwestern Sustainability Services
Oct 14 2014
LEEDuser Expert
1009 Thumbs Up

dynamic glass

Can benifits of glass, that automatically change VLT and SHGCSolar heat gain coefficient (SHGC): The fraction of solar gain admitted through a window, expressed as a number between 0 and 1. based on the position of the sun, be garnered in the proposed model?

Automatically controlled shades or blinds can achieve savings so I assume savings can be achieved by dynamic glass as well.

Any insight or previous project experience anyone can share is greatly appreciated.

Thanks!

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Francesco Passerini engineer, leedme.it Oct 15 2014 Guest 1043 Thumbs Up

In my opinion, if the software that you use can model the real behavior of the glass, you have to model it. The software shall comply with G2.2. Otherwise, you can develop an exceptional calculation (G2.5).
Regards

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Oct 15 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

Sure you can claim the savings.

Agreed Francesco. I am not aware of any modeling software that can model this without some sort of workaround. I would certainly ask the manufacturer for assistance on modeling it.

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Ana Paula Quiros Architect, LEED AP BD+C ECOstudioXV
Oct 10 2014
Guest
9 Thumbs Up

INSULATION ON SHELTERED WALLS

We are assessing a C&S 2009 project. We have two sheltered walls with neighbors on both sides. The walls from the neighbors are not along all the project walls. The question here is if all the sheltered walls need to have insulation?? Or the insulation needs to be only on the non-sheltered parts?
Many thanks!

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Oct 10 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

I am not sure what you mean by sheltered walls. The walls for conditioned and semi-conditioned space need to be insulated. If it is a shared wall with the same temperatures on both sides you would model it as adiabatic and technically it would not need to be insulated. Practically what happens if the neighbor goes away? Reference ASHRAE 90.1-2007 Section 5 for the terminology used to describe what does and does not need to be insulated.

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Ana Paula Quiros Architect, LEED AP BD+C, ECOstudioXV Oct 10 2014 Guest 9 Thumbs Up

It is actually a party wall with aprox. 15 inches of separation from the neighbors walls.

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Oct 10 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

If the 15 inches is connected to the outside then it is an exterior wall.

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Hieu Huynh Environmental Engineer
Oct 06 2014
Guest
8 Thumbs Up

Modeling pump, fan, COP

Project Location: Vietnam

Hi, I have many chilled water pumps, 1 primary and 3 loop secondary pumps with heat exchangers. The issue is the modelling software - HAP (even IES) can model only 1 primary and 1 secondary pump so I'm wondering if averaging capacities and flow rates of 3 secondary pumps is a good way to input the model
2. ME engineers show fans, pumps in schedule under full load running with some safty factor and the real load would be different from the schedule. Will I model as per schedule just to keep consistency among doc or real load?
3. Chiller in proposed case works at different temp set point from the baseline, do I have to transform COP of proposed chiller under standard condition (ASHRAE 90.1)

Thank you very much

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Oct 07 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

How to model something within a particular piece of software might be better addressed by the software vendor or in one of the discussion groups found at onebuilding.org (HAP is covered).

1. In general you are required to model the proposed case as designed. If you need to perform a workaround you must describe it thoroughly and cite the source. A published workaround is highly encouraged.
2. You model the fans/pumps as designed/installed and then the software matches it to the load. Model per the schedule.
3. Model the proposed as it is designed. It is OK to have different temp set points compared to the baseline.

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charles bell principal theGreenTeam, Inc.
Oct 06 2014
LEEDuser Member
784 Thumbs Up

Campus Site Lignting Calcs - again, sorry

Project Location: United States

We submitted (on Jan 23, 2014) the question below. Unfortunately, since then my email has crashed and I have lost the response. Is there any way this can be recovered? Much Thanks!!
"We have a campus application for our 3 mixed-use buildings. We are now on our final review and need to modify our submittal. We submitted the site lighting calculations not taking advantage of the master site like we did on other credits. The engineer in charge submitted the site data as if 2 of the projects supplied all the electricity for the site lighting. In other words, that each of the two projects supplied roughly 50% each of the lighting power when actually they should be categorized as supplying roughly 33% each. He said that this was done because ASHRAE 90.1 template wants to show where the power feed comes from rather than sharing the provided energy related to the master site. The infrastructure for the lighting emanates from these two buildings as the third building (still within the boundary of the master site) is located more remotely and does not feed the lighting. Do you see any problem with changing the submittal to show that we divide the power more equitably for the three projects? We expect to write a detailed narrative explaining the changes. Thank you in advance for your help."

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Oct 06 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

If you scroll to the bottom of the page you will see multiple pages of this forum in date order. Your original post and my response are still there on page 2.

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Eleftherios Zacharakis Environmental and Energy Consultant WSP Group Sweden
Oct 01 2014
LEEDuser Member
51 Thumbs Up

Existing building with extension

Our project is an extension building that undergoes a major renovation on the HVAC-system and interior, but not exterior envelope, and even gets a new extension. In total, the existing gross area accounts for almost 80% of the total gross area after renovation and extension and it is almost the same amount for the existing envelope in comparison to the exterior envelope after renovation and extension. How should the Baseline building be modeled? According to FAQs in the section, the existing buildings do not need to be rotated and the existing exterior envelope can be used for the Baseline modeling as well. However, in this building it is not possible separate the new part from the existing part in order to account the rotation only in the new construction part. Can I still rotate the whole building? Moreover, the existing exterior envelope has better U-values than the Baseline U-values in Tables 5.5-8. Can I model the Baseline building with an exterior envelope exact the same as in the Proposed building, that makes the modelling easier, and in that case not taking credit for a better exterior envelope of the new part of the Proposed building against the new part of the Baseline building with U-values from Tables 5.5-8? One last though, how shall I count the points in regard to the savings in the table under Option 1 for EAcr1 when considering the type of my building, new vs. existing building?

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Oct 04 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

You do not rotate the building since the addition is far smaller than the existing.

You model the Baseline in the existing using the existing conditions. You model the addition using the ASHRAE Table 5.5-X minimums.

You can always model things more conservatively (less savings) than the actual situation. Make sure to explain that you have done so.

The points are correctly calculated and adjusted by the form based on the percentage of new vs existing.

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João Costa Engineer ETRIA
Sep 30 2014
Guest
2 Thumbs Up

Glazing specifications for existing building

Project Location: Brazil

Hi,

I am developing a simulation (EAP2/LEED CS) for an existing building located in Rio de Janeiro. According with the Table G3.1.5, for the Baseline:

"Existing Buildings: For existing buildings envelopes, the baseline building design shall reflect existing conditions prior to any revisions that are part of the scope of work being evaluated"

Considering that this building it is from the 70´s, it becomes difficult to obtain the glazing specifications through design evidences. I whould like to expose two different cases and how should I proceed:

• Clear glazing

o Can I measure its thickness “in situ” and consider the corresponding characteristics (eg.U-FS = 5.17 and SHGCSolar heat gain coefficient (SHGC): The fraction of solar gain admitted through a window, expressed as a number between 0 and 1.=0.83)?

• Colored glass or glass with solar control film:

o Can I consider the worst case scenario for my simulation and admit a glass with SHGC=0,25 that complies with ASHRAE 90.1 2007 (Table 5.5-2)

o or should I perform a test in order to clarify what is the present SHGC? (expensive option).

Waiting for your feedback.

Best regards

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Oct 04 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

If you can determine the performance parameters of the existing glazing you can use that information (make sure to document it). If you cannot then you use the values in Table A8.2.

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charles bell principal theGreenTeam, Inc.
Sep 29 2014
LEEDuser Member
784 Thumbs Up

Site lighting calculations

Project Location: United States

We have a campus projects with three relatively equal size multi-story buildings. The owner will manage the three buildings separately. Each project will pay for their own utilities. The power for the plaza lighting (LED) is supplied by two of the buildings. However, the third will share in the costs. LEED reviewers have rejected this third project's claim to lighting costs- they state as follows: "The narrative states that the exterior lighting for the plaza area has been included in other submissions; therefore, this area has been modeled with no lighting power in the Proposed Case. However, additional lighting power allowance cannot be claimed in the Baseline model for surfaces that are not provided with lighting in the actual design. Additionally, the exterior light power calculations indicate that credit has been taken in the Proposed Design Case for lighting reductions on non-tradable surfaces. For future submittals, revise the exterior lighting power in the Baseline Case. Ensure that no additional lighting power is claimed in the Baseline model for surfaces that are not provided with lighting in the actual design, and ensure that credit is not taken in the Proposed Design Case for lighting reductions on non-tradable surfaces. Update Table 1.4 to reflect any changes, and provide an updated LEED Energy Performance Summary Report."
Can you help our engineer to be able to claim this lighting power usage.

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Sep 30 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

The source of the electrical wiring should not really matter. What matters is the assigned energy use in a case where the energy cost is shared. If you assign the energy use to the projects equally then you should be able to claim the savings. Make sure there is no double-counting and that you are not trying to claim savings for non-tradable surfaces. I would recommend you submit a project team inquiry on the GBCI web site contact us to propose a solution and seek feedback from the reviewer.

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Hieu Huynh Environmental Engineer
Sep 25 2014
Guest
8 Thumbs Up

Modeling OA with Demand control ventilation

Project Location: Vietnam

Hi, I have demand control ventilation for every AHU1.Air-handling units (AHUs) are mechanical indirect heating, ventilating, or air-conditioning systems in which the air is treated or handled by equipment located outside the rooms served, usually at a central location, and conveyed to and from the rooms by a fan and a system of distributing ducts. (NEEB, 1997 edition) 2.A type of heating and/or cooling distribution equipment that channels warm or cool air to different parts of a building. This process of channeling the conditioned air often involves drawing air over heating or cooling coils and forcing it from a central location through ducts or air-handling units. Air-handling units are hidden in the walls or ceilings, where they use steam or hot water to heat, or chilled water to cool the air inside the ductwork.. Is it true that OA baseline will modeled as minimum ASHRAE 62.1 and proposed will modeled as equipment schedule which is 30% above ASHRAE 62 (I pursue IEQc2 too) so OA in baseline and proposed is different.

Many Thanks for your feedback

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Sep 25 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

Yes that is correct. There is often an energy penalty to increasing ventilation air.

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Toni Herena Montull Project Engineer Aiguasol
Sep 24 2014
LEEDuser Member
2 Thumbs Up

Baseline Ventilation

Project Location: Spain

Dear all,

our previous version of the baseline model in a C&S building had the same ventilation rates than the proposed. But, we were advised by the reviewer to change it in the zone with a ventilation demand control and model the ventilation rates as the ashrae minimum rates.
We find out that these values are much lower than the ones we have in the proposed studio, and we lose 4 points (due to % savings reduction). It is hard to see that installing a control demand system is worst than a normal system.
What do you think? Maybe is there something wrong? It can be possible due to different regulations (spain vs usa)? What can we do to reflect the benefits of the demand control?
Thank you in advance and sunny regards.

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Sep 24 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

You are accounting for the benefits of DCV if you are modeling it correctly. You are paying a penalty for significantly over-sizing the ventilation relative to AHSRAE 62.1-2007 which is why the savings went down.

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Annette Kwee Witte Projektmanagement GmbH
Sep 11 2014
LEEDuser Member

Equivalent standards for projects outside the USA

Dear All,

We are currently working on projects in Germany. Are you aware of any equivalent standards available at this moment or in the proces of approval?

Thanks in advance!

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Sep 11 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

USGBC is in the process of developing alternative compliance paths for BD+C European projects. The announcement that I saw indicated that they were coming soon. Not sure if it will contain an alternative to 90.1.

Someone at the German Green Building Association would probably know more - http://www.german-gba.org/home/

Many of the ACPs are being written with local input.

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Annette Kwee Witte Projektmanagement GmbH Sep 12 2014 LEEDuser Member

Thank you Marcus!

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Toni Herena Montull Project Engineer Aiguasol
Sep 09 2014
LEEDuser Member
2 Thumbs Up

Pump consumption

I have a proposed design with boiler and chiller, with water distribution. There are many pumps in the distribution system. In the other hand, I have a baseline building with a system 5 (VAVVariable Air Volume (VAV) is an HVAC conservation feature that supplies varying quantities of conditioned (heated or cooled) air to different parts of a building according to the heating and cooling needs of those specific areas.) and a hot loop with a boiler. This baseline only has a pump in the hot loop.
eQuest results says that there is more consumption for Pumps and AUX for the baseline than for the proposed. This shouldn't be like this, I guess.
What do you think? Reasons?
Thank you in advance.

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Sep 09 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

There are several variables so it is hard to say without the specific data. Are the Proposed pumps variable speed?

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Toni Herena Montull Project Engineer, Aiguasol Sep 09 2014 LEEDuser Member 2 Thumbs Up

Marcus,

yes, hot water loop and cold water loop have VS pumps. The basline building has just one pump, for the hot water loop, but there is no pump for the cold water loop, as it has been defined as a VAVVariable Air Volume (VAV) is an HVAC conservation feature that supplies varying quantities of conditioned (heated or cooled) air to different parts of a building according to the heating and cooling needs of those specific areas. system.

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Sep 09 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

Variable speed versus constant speed can have a large energy impact. Depending on the difference in kW this may explain your result.

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Francesco Passerini engineer, leedme.it Sep 10 2014 Guest 1043 Thumbs Up

Have you considered paragraph G3.1.3.5 "Hot water pumps" for the baseline model? Regards

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Toni Herena Montull Project Engineer, Aiguasol Sep 15 2014 LEEDuser Member 2 Thumbs Up

Thanks Marcus and Francesco,

Yes, Francesco, I have considered that paragraph G3.1.3.5., but it seems to me too few pumps in the baseline...

One more question, this hot water pump for the baseline, has to be equivalent to....?? the primary loop pumps? primary and secondary loop pumps?

Thanks guys, you are really helping me!

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Francesco Passerini engineer, leedme.it Sep 15 2014 Guest 1043 Thumbs Up

G3.1.3.5.: "The pumping system shall be modeled as primary-only"

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Toni Herena Montull Project Engineer Aiguasol
Sep 09 2014
LEEDuser Member
2 Thumbs Up

System 5. Two boilers

In a review, the reviewer told me that as a system type 5, I should model 2 identical boilers. With that change (without defining capacity, I guess eQuest do it by demand) the baseline energy use decrease from 9 005 therms to 7 211 therms. As you can understand, this does not help in my purpose... and I cannot find a physical meaning. Anybody have a reasonable explanation?

Thank you in advance

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Sep 09 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

It makes perfect sense. The single boiler would operate many hours at well under it rated capacity. It is even exaggerated by the required 25% over-sizing. Two boilers which are staged as required would more closely match the loads throughout the year. Since the boiler efficiency is lower when the loads are lower the energy use would be greater. This is why modular boilers often make sense from an energy perspective.

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Toni Herena Montull Project Engineer, Aiguasol Sep 09 2014 LEEDuser Member 2 Thumbs Up

Thank you Marcus,

I thought the boiler capacity was modulating under demand already with just one boiler. I have no defined any capacity for the baseline boiler, so I guess it was defined automatically by the eQUEST. Where can I find an explanation about how have to be defined this boiler? (more detailed than G3 reference to the two boilers).

Thank you in advance.

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Sep 09 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

The boiler must be auto-sized and a 1.25 multiplier applied to the capacity (see G3.1.2.2). The modeling of the boilers for the Baseline is described in several sections of Appendix G (see G3.1.3.2 to G3.1.3.6).

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Lily Li
Sep 05 2014
Guest
5 Thumbs Up

EAp2 Form

in EAp2 Form Summary shows "N", but no error information provided, is this Form wrong?

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Sep 05 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

The overall compliance of the form is actually not important. Just make sure it is all filled out the best you can and do not worry about the "N" at the end.

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Lily Li Sep 05 2014 Guest 5 Thumbs Up

Thank you !

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Ivan Souza Sustainability Consultancy Services Cushman & Wakefield
Aug 28 2014
LEEDuser Member
890 Thumbs Up

Proposed Model HVAC Efficiency for Tenant Space

I'm modeling a commercial building. The business rooms are all leased, and will have an air conditioning system.

What is the value of efficiency in the proposed model should I use? The ASHRAE 90.1-2007 as value?

That can not be bad, considering that the gains will be smaller?

Thank you!

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Aug 28 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

If a design exists, the Proposed is modeled as designed (see Table G3.1-1 and G3.1-7). The Baseline is according to Appendix G.

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Ivan Souza Sustainability Consultancy Services, Cushman & Wakefield Aug 28 2014 LEEDuser Member 890 Thumbs Up

Thank you Marcus!

I know about that, but the point is that there is not a project for commercial offices.

It will be the responsibility of the renter and we indicate the parameters in the lease aggrement.

In this case, my proposed model (commercial offices) should have efficiencies as ASHRAE?

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Aug 28 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

So if the spaces are not designed and you do not have specific requirements that effect the energy use of the HVAC design in the tenant lease agreement, then you model the HVAC identical to the Baseline system. So yes in this scenario the efficiency would be the ASHRAE minimum.

It is not clear from your post what specific HVAC parameters are in the lease agreement.

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Ivan Souza Sustainability Consultancy Services, Cushman & Wakefield Aug 28 2014 LEEDuser Member 890 Thumbs Up

When i said parameters, is about the COP of equipments according to the system type.

Now i understand.

Tks for all!

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Aug 28 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

If you require a minimum efficiency higher than the ASHRAE minimum in the lease agreement then you can claim energy savings for this parameter.

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Ivan Souza Sustainability Consultancy Services, Cushman & Wakefield Aug 28 2014 LEEDuser Member 890 Thumbs Up

In this case, I could use a minimum efficiency value greater than the ASHRAE, and the lease agremment indicate that this value should be the minimum that the tenant must meet in your project?

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Aug 28 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

I think we are saying the same thing, so yes.

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Ivan Souza Sustainability Consultancy Services, Cushman & Wakefield Aug 28 2014 LEEDuser Member 890 Thumbs Up

So understood.

Thank you Marcus!

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PAULA HERNANDEZ MRS. INGENIERO MARIO PEDRO HERNANDEZ
Aug 28 2014
LEEDuser Member
558 Thumbs Up

Anticipated Tenant Fit Out

Background:
In a C&S building we suggest a Tenant fit out to comply with credit IEQ_c8.2, where we show meeting rooms, corridors and an office space layout resulting in a grater quantity of people of that responding to the "default occupancy". The questions are:
1. Do we have to consider this layout for the PIForms?
2. Do lighting savings have to account for the different spaces like corridors in the lighting power allowed calculations?

Thank you

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Aug 28 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

1. I think the default is used in the PIf.
2.If you are trying to claim lighting savings in the tenant spaceTenant space is the area within the LEED project boundary. For more information on what can and must be in the LEED project boundary see the Minimum Program Requirements (MPRs) and LEED 2009 MPR Supplemental Guidance. Note: tenant space is the same as project space. then you must have the actual design that will be used by the tenant or have a requirement in the tenant lease agreement. Corridors within the tenant space would be accounted for in either scenario. For the lease agreement you could use the Building Area Method which is an average for the whole space or the Space-by-Space method which establishes a lighting power density for each portion of the tenant space by space type.

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PAULA HERNANDEZ MRS., INGENIERO MARIO PEDRO HERNANDEZ Aug 28 2014 LEEDuser Member 558 Thumbs Up

Thank you Marcus,
So, as I understand in point 2, if I use the Building Area Method I will not have to consider every different ussage space, which will me allow to take the hole tenant spaceTenant space is the area within the LEED project boundary. For more information on what can and must be in the LEED project boundary see the Minimum Program Requirements (MPRs) and LEED 2009 MPR Supplemental Guidance. Note: tenant space is the same as project space. as "Office" space. I think this option will be better,

thank you again

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Aug 28 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

That is certainly the clearer and easier route to take.

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Francesco Passerini engineer leedme.it
Aug 08 2014
Guest
1043 Thumbs Up

energy costs

Sometimes in the energy bills a part of the costs doesn't depend on the energy that is used (e.g. the connection is paid even if one doesn't consume energy), while other costs are proportional to the used energy. For this prerequisite shall both parts of the costs be considered?

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Aug 08 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

You can use just a flat rate or you can enter the whole tariff. If you use the whole tariff you would enter the customer charge too. For the flat rate you can use a published average or create an average based on the billing in that location. If the later the customer charge would be part of the average flat rate calculation.

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Toni Herena Montull Project Engineer Aiguasol
Aug 08 2014
LEEDuser Member
2 Thumbs Up

Electric meters for interior lighting and receptable loads

Hi,
In a Core and Shell model, for EAp2 (eQUEST), a LEED reviewer told me to define lighting and receptable loads meters. We have already defined the interior lighting in every space, so my doubt is if I define a sub-meter for this lighting consumption (with its power and schedule), we are counting it twice? How can I link a sub-meter to an already defined lighting. Nearly the same for the receptable loads. Thank you in advance!

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Aug 08 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

You would not count it twice.

First you create the sub-meter. Then assign it to a main meter. Within the thermal zone parameter box (air-side HVAC tab) or within the spreadsheet view you can then assign the load to the submeterSubmetering is used to determine the proportion of energy or water use within a building attributable to specific end uses such as tenant spaces, or subsystems such as the heating component of an HVAC system..

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Toni Herena Montull Project Engineer, Aiguasol Sep 09 2014 LEEDuser Member 2 Thumbs Up

Thank you Marcus, It works!

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Alfonzo Collins
Jul 23 2014
Guest
5 Thumbs Up

DHW percentages for retail

I am working on a model for a large retail space, and need to determine the hot water usage. Based on square footage, FTEFull-time equivalent (FTE) represents a regular building occupant who spends 8 hours a day (40 hours a week) in the project building. Part-time or overtime occupants have FTE values based on their hours per day divided by 8 (or hours per week divided by 40). Transient Occupants can be reported as either daily totals or as part of the FTE. Residential occupancy should be estimated based on the number and size of units. Core and Shell projects should refer to the default occupancy table in the Reference Guide appendix. All occupant assumptions must be consistent across all credits in all categories. and flow/flush rates, I can determine the total water usage (obviously that's WEp1). From that, how do I derive the hot water usage? Is there a standard percentage of hot water out of total water? Does this percentage change based on different space types (for example, I assume that due to showers, residential HW% would be much higher than retail or commercial)? Thanks to anyone who can help me with this.

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Jul 23 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

One of the ASHRAE Handbooks contains information on the % hot water.

There is a table on the Service Hot Water tab of the new Section 1.4 Tables that you can use to do the calculations for hot water usage.

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Alfonzo Collins Jul 23 2014 Guest 5 Thumbs Up

Marcus, thanks for the quick reply. I just downloaded the Revised Section 1.4 Tables, dated Dec 2012--that's the most recent one I see there--and there's no DHWDomestic hot water (DHW) is water used for food preparation, cleaning and sanitation and personal hygiene, but not heating. table...am I looking at the correct document?

Also, which ASHRAE Handbook are you referring to? Thanks again!

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Jul 23 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

Here is the latest one I know of - http://www.usgbc.org/resources/eap2-section-14-tables-new-all-bdampc-pro...

Within the Service Hot Water tab there is a table called Service Hot Water Fixtures. Within the notes in this table it indicates the ASHRAE Handbook where you can find the information you seek.

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Marcio Orofino ENE Consultores
Jul 07 2014
LEEDuser Member
243 Thumbs Up

Minimum threshold for projects with new areas and existing areas

We have a project which qualifies for CS and can be treated as a single building. It is comprised of near 214,180 ft² that will be completely renovated (HVAC and other systems, except the building envelope) and near 83,060 ft² of a new tower. Minimum thresholds for EAp2 compliance under version 3 (2009) is 5% for for existing building renovations and 10% for new buildings. According to version 2.2, cost target savings for projects with new buildings and existing building renovations were calculated based on the target savings for each one and their respective areas, i.e.: target = (exisiting area/ total area) x 7% + (new area/ total area) x 14%. Hence, in the case of this project:
1) is the minimum threshold for EAp2 10% or can it be calculated as before, according to version 2.2, i.e. target = (exisiting area/ total area) x 5% + (new area/ total area) x 10%?
2) More than 50% of its gross area will be leasable. In case the methodology explained for minimum thresholds under version 2.2 can be adopted for version 2009, can it be used for CS?

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Jul 07 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

The same weighted average calculation applies. The EAp2 forms calculate this automatically.

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Marcio Orofino ENE Consultores Jul 11 2014 LEEDuser Member 243 Thumbs Up

Thank you, Marcus. And a new issue arose during the modeling process: I am aware that, fot the existing building portion of the project, Baseline Building envelope shall reflect the existing envelope prior to alterations. In the case of this project, some glazed areas have been removed, and the window-to-wall ratio of the Proposed Building happens to be less than the WWR of the Baseline Building. On the other hand, Appendix G states that WWR of Baseline shall be equal or less than the WWR of the Proposed model. How shall we proceed?

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Jul 11 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

Those existing glazed areas just became new construction and are no longer existing. Treat the infilled windows as new walls using the Baseline minimum values and the actual U-valueU-value describes how well a building element conducts heat. It measures the rate of heat transfer through a building element over a given area, under standardized conditions. The greater the U-value, the less efficient the building element is as an insulator. The inverse of (1 divided by) the U-value is the R-value. in the Proposed. Model the window area the same in both models. I think that this is the conservative approach.

You technically could probably do it the other way and explain the difference in the window areas.

Basically if you are forced to choose between two Baseline requirements, pick the one that generates the most conservative result.

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Marcio Orofino ENE Consultores Jul 11 2014 LEEDuser Member 243 Thumbs Up

Thank you for the prompt response, Marcus. But I have just read in the Advanced Energy Modeling for LEED that, for existing buildings, we shall "model building envelope using (pre-retrofit) building envelope thermal parameters rather than referenced standard's prescriptive building envelope requirements for specified climate" (page 7, Table 2.1, ASHRAE 90.1-2007, Baseline Case, Building Envelope). In order to avoid future problems during certification I'll use a safe margin in case the reviewer asks to use the conservative approach you have suggested.

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Marcus Sheffer LEED Fellow, 7group Jul 11 2014 LEEDuser Expert 43537 Thumbs Up

Comparing walls to windows ends up violating the Baseline modeling protocols too. All you need it Table G3.1-5 Baseline to tell you how to model the Baseline envelope. What you have identified is a conflict in the requirements. Pick the one that gives the most conservative result and be sure to point out to the reviewer that you have done so.

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Eleni Soulti
Jun 28 2014
Guest
5 Thumbs Up

Fan power calculations

Hello,

We have received a review from LEED saying that for the baseline model there are inconsistencies between the demand values reported in Table EAp2-5 and Table 1.4.
When completing Table 1.4 I use the values from the SV-A eQUEST reports for each one of my two HVAC systems (baseline System 5), so the total demand would be the sum of the two separate demands (not necessarily happening simultaneously).
For Table EAp2-5, I use the demand calculated on the PS-E eQUEST report, which is the total for the whole building.
My understanding is that these two figures should not be the same, because only one of them refers to peak demand. Have you had any relevant experience with LEED so far and how would you recommend responding?

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Oct 24 2014
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