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 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.
Energy 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:
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.
Passive 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.
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.
The Core Performance Guide path is a good option if all of the following are true:
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.
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.
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.
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.)
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.
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.
No, not for an existing building.
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.
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.
The energy savings are based on the whole building energy use—building and process. LEED does not stipulate exactly where they come from.
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.
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.
You can assume exterior lighting savings for canopies against the baseline, but not the shading effects of canopies.
If exterior lighting is present on the project site, consider it as a constant in both energy model cases.
Any conditioned area must be included in the energy model.
The Energy Star portion of the form does not apply to international projects.
Use the tables and definitions provided in 90.1 Appendix B to determine an equivalent ASHRAE climate zone.
International projects are not required to enter a Target Finder score. Target Finder is based on U.S. energy use data.
For Section 220.127.116.11c, a manual control device would be sufficient to comply with mandatory provisions.
Submitting these forms is not common; however, it can be beneficial if you are applying for any exceptions.
Use the building area method.
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.
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.
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.
If it is only used for backup and not for regular use such as peak shaving—no.
SHGC is not a mandatory provision so it is available for trade-off and can be higher than the baseline.
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.
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.
The prerequisite’s energy-reduction target of 10% is not common practice and is considered beyond code compliance.
Indirect 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:
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.
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.
Use 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:
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.
Besides energy modeling, you may need to use the exceptional calculation methodology (ECM) when any of the following situations occur:
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.
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:
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.
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 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.
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:
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.
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:
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. 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
The architect and HVAC engineer should agree on the design, working with the cost estimator and owner.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Excerpted from LEED 2009 for New Construction and Major Renovations
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.
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:
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.
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.
The building must meet the following requirements:
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:
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.
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.
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
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.
Useful web resource with information on local/regional incentives for energy-efficiency programs.
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.
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.
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.
Research center at RPI provides access to a wide range of daylighting resources, case studies, design tools, reports, publications and more.
International association of energy modelers with various national and local chapters.
Non-profit organization aiming at design community to increase collaboration for designing energy efficient buildings.
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.
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.
This website discusses the step-by-step process for energy modeling.
This online resource, supported by Natural Resources Canada, presents energy-efficient technologies, strategies for commercial buildings, and pertinent case studies.
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.
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.
Free download of AHSRAE energy savings guide, use for Option 2.
Research warehouse for strategies and case studies of energy efficiency in buildings.
An online window selection tool with performance characteristics.
This website lays out design process for developing an energy efficient building.
This website discusses ways to improve design for lower energy demand as they relate to the AIA 2030 challenge.
This website includes discussion of design issues, materials and assemblies, window design decisions and case studies.
This site lists multiple web-based and downloadable tools that can be used for energy analyses.
This database is maintainted by the California Energy Commission and lists resources related to energy use and efficiency.
Energy design tools are available to be used for free online or available to download.
This website lists performance characteristics for various envelope materials.
This is an online forum of discussion for energy efficiency, computer model software users.
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.
This directory provides information on 406 building software tools for evaluating energy efficiency, renewable energy, and sustainability in buildings.
Weather data for more than 2100 locations are available in EnergyPlus weather format.
Weather data for U.S. and Non-U.S. locations in BIN format.
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.
A guide for achieving energy efficiency in new commercial buildings, referenced in the LEED energy credits.
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.
This document is USGBC’s second (v2.0) major release of guidance for district or campus thermal energy in LEED, and is a unified set of guidance comprising the following an update to the original Version 1.0 guidance released May 2008 for LEED v2.x and the initial release of formal guidance for LEED v2009.
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.
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).
Required reference document for DES systems in LEED energy credits.
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 statistics from the U.S. government.
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.
This website offers information on energy efficiency in buildings, highlighting success stories, breakthrough technology, and policy updates.
Bimonthly publication on case studies and new technologies for energy efficiency in commercial buildings.
AIA publication highlighting local and state green building incentives.
2008 guidelines and performance goals from the National Science and Technology Council.
Information about energy-efficient building practices available in EDR's Design Briefs, Design Guidelines, Case Studies, and Technology Overviews.
DOE tools for whole building analyses, including energy simulation, load calculation, renewable energy, retrofit analysis and green buildings tools.
This is a computer program that predicts the one-dimensional transfer of heat and moisture.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
In your supporting documentation, include spec sheets of equipment described in the Option 1 energy model or Options 2–3 prescriptive paths.
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.
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.
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.)
The climate zones shown on this Department of Energy map are relevant to all options for this credit.
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.
The following links take you to the public, informational versions of the dynamic LEED Online forms for each NC-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.
Version 4 forms (newest):
Version 3 forms:
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."
Documentation for this credit can be part of a Design Phase submittal.
The outdoor heaters would be considered a process load and must be modeled identically in both models. Any savings would need to be claimed as an exceptional calculation. I suppose if there were more efficient radiant heater you could claim some savings but in my experience the efficiencies are all pretty much the same.
We are working on a manufacturing facility for which we are trying to choose the accurate HVAC baseline system for energy modelling.
According to ASHRAE 90.1 2007 Table G.3.1.1A, looking at our conditioned areas, number of floors, usage and heating source as specified in Table G 3.1.1A, we need to choose "System 6 – Packaged 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. with PFP Boxes" as the predominant HVAC system. We have high thermal loads in certain conditioned zones of the Process spaces. These Spaces make up 44% of the total conditional space area of the facility.
Therefore, we wish to avail of G 3.1.1 Exception (a) to “Use an additional system type for the non-predominant conditions” for these spaces as they are more than 1900 Sq. M as required by Exception (a).
Further we would like to avail of G3.1.1 Exception (b) to choose "System 4 –PSZ –HP" as our baseline for these Process Spaces under discussion here. It is our understanding that we are allowed to do that as per this interpretation from ASHRAE dated “Interpretation 90.1-2007-05 - January 23, 2010” on their website:
This interpretation says we can apply System 4 as the baseline for these process spaces as long they form the "lesser portion" of the building but doesnt specify a limitation on how less they have to be. Since the rest of the conditioned spaces of the building make up for 56% of the total conditioned area, Are we good to go with this methodology for choosing System 4 for the Process spaces?
Sounds like you are entering Table G3.1.1A with the total area. That is not the correct approach. If you are going to apply any of the exceptions to G3.1.1 you first break up the project into the distinct areas. Whichever area is greatest use that to enter Table G3.1.1A as this is the predominant condition. You then apply the exceptions to each of the other areas in turn using Table G3.1.1A and applying applicable exceptions.
In your case it sounds like you have two areas and the predominant one is 56% of the total. Use this area to enter Table G3.1.1A. You would then apply any applicable exceptions to the remaining 44%.
G3.1.1 Exception a only applies to the two situations listed (residential/nonresidential and heating fuel source). So it does not sound like you can use that one.
Thanks for the clarification on choosing the exceptions and area break up, .
We have relooked at the areas (after Design reached completion) like you described and have found that 80% of our factory floor can be mapped to System 6 as described above being the predominant area, the remaining 20% of areas have high thermal loads due to 'Process Equipment'.
But when you point out that - G3.1.1 Exception only applies to two conditions (Resiidential/Non Residential and heating source). Does that mean we cant model these Process areas with a different HVAC baseline by using the Exception?
Please guide us on how to model the baseline for the process areas with high thermal loads.
Review exceptions b or c to see if they apply since exception a does not appear to apply.
How could we find a baseline model for an intensely refrigerated building, such as skate / ski indoor pavilion?
Does ASHRAE provide with some guide-lines or should we "build" our own baseline, modifying specific parameters (envelope requirements, HVAC systems...) according to similar buildings, duely justified? Any reference in that field?
And the last question: in case there's a possibility to find the right baseline for the intensely refrigerated building, would you recommend to split the building complex in different "buildings" ("LEED group certification") when other activities (commercial, etc) cohexist?
Thanks in advance.
Stadiums, and other entertainment centers are energy destroyers. That being said, greening them up is a great idea. Although, it certainly simplifies matters to "split" the facility into "normal (office)" and "other (playing fields, snow-ramp, etc)", incentifying savings on the just the one side when it could be both, is I believe, not in the spirit of LEED. IMHO, setting up an unverifiable baseline for factors such as "process" including stadium lighting, snow machines, etc. is better than none at all.
My advice is to approach the USGBC directly, for guidance on "special" projects.
You can't just chop off pieces of the project, just because you can't save there against the baseline. You can save! But you must build the case of the "reference processes".
The baseline is always defined by Appendix G. This covers all of the regulated components of 90.1 (envelope, HVAC, service hot water, power systems, lighting and motors). The rest is not regulated and is considered process.
The unregulated or process loads are modeled identically in both models. If you wish to claim savings related to these loads then you do an exceptional calculation. The baseline for the refrigeration system, for example, is up to you however you must be able to defend your choice to the reviewer. The criteria for the baseline is standard practice for that system in that location. So whatever is the industry standard practice is used as the baseline and you will need to make the case that your baseline represents standard practice. In some cases the baseline may be pretty easy to define, for example perhaps chiller efficiency. In other cases it may be harder to define.
Thanks a lot for your comments, Jean and Marcus.
Jean, I totally agree with you that these building typologies are not the most appropriate to claim energy savings. However, the aim of the promoters is to do their best to improve its efficiency. The idea of splitting the project into different buildings and attempting "group certification" path was mainly due to its clearly independent volumetry and programs.
If it's not required, we might avoid it. In fact, a global certification would simplify the whole process.
Marcus, regarding the baseline definition, we were considering to exceed the minimum Appendix G climatic zone requirements in our baseline (envelope thermal transmission...), based on our "selected model". That would set us into more restrictive conditions.
According to you, should particular cooling requirements (apart from the ice production) be considered as process loads? or could they be understood as special HVAC requirements?
Space cooling requirements for the occupants are regulated and therefore not a process load.
For LEED NC certification, I’m modeling a building with 03 floors and less than 14.000 m² conditioned floor area. The proposed cooling system is composed by absorption chillers with natural gas as fuel. The building has no heating system, only cooling. According to ASHRAE 90.1-2007 – app. G, I understand that the baseline system is system #6. My doubt is:
For cooling, Proposed model will use natural gas as fuel, and baseline will use electricity. Is that right? Because there’s a big difference between the natural gas and electricity tariffs, and I’m not sure if I can compare these costs, or if I should somehow calculate the cooling system from baseline with the natural gas tariff too.
Tks in advance
That is correct. Proposed is gas and baseline is electric using the appropriate rates.
We are in process of submitting for certification a health care out patient clinic. The proposed buiding has air handling units are chilled water cooled with many devices. The air handlers are equipped with heat pipes, catalytic air cleaners, MERVMinimum efficiency reporting value. 14 filters, and MERV 17 filters. Every air handler has an external energy recovery wheel assigned to use the air exhaust from patient areas to precool outside air. The isolation rooms in emergency area have an exhaust system with constant volume control, MERV 17 filtration, and UV light.
I need help to determine which fan power credits I shall take and which I shall not take for the baseline building. I know is obvious that I have to take credit for fully ducted return/exhaust and MERV 13-15 filtration. But what about the others?
I will appreciate your feedback.
Please see Table 18.104.22.168.1B.
No credit for heat pipes or UV lights. Not sure if catalytic air cleaners count under any of the devices listed. You can't take credit for heat recovery unless the baseline system is required to have heat recovery per G22.214.171.124.
The catalytic air cleaner is just a different type of filter...filters clean air don't they. And if your heatexchanger is required in the baseline, I would also look at pressure drop credit here. And I would argue the same for the UV bank pressure drop wise. These going into the fan power calcs.
LEED Reviewers are implementing new requirements for the baseline building (LEED NC v2.2 EAp2 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) through the comment process. In the last three reviews, I have received comments that the Fan Energy (kWhA kilowatt-hour is a unit of work or energy, measured as 1 kilowatt (1,000 watts) of power expended for 1 hour. One kWh is equivalent to 3,412 Btu.) / Fan Power (kW) should be around 3,000 hours.
For a check, I simulated the "Ref Bldg Large Office New2004_v1.3_5.0" with Chicago weather file. I reset the minimum flow rate to 0.40 cfm/ft2 (0.00203 m3/s/m2). The results are 1039.43 GJ and 79047 Watts in fan energy and fan power. This calculates to 3,652.6 hours which exceeds the new requirement for a well-known reference building.
To achieve this new requirement, you must reduce the minimum flow rate or turn off the fans during setback or both. It seems unreasonable.
New LEED requirements should be reviewed through public process and based on scientific research. New LEED requirements should be implemented through the next publication with LEED reference guide. Or, perhaps I’m missing something…
Stating that the fan hours of use should be around 3,000 hours does not constitute a new requirement. It is quite a coincidence that it happened three times in a row however.
The reviewer should be looking at the number of hours as a check for reasonableness and as a comparison to the baseline. Are the hours of use reasonable relative to the project type (i.e. the number of hours one would expect the fans to be running)? For an office open about 60 hours a week, 3,000 is a reasonable number. If your model is greater than that explain why the hours are more. No review would be denied because it is greater than 3,000 hours with any plausible explanation, especially for a few hundred hours greater than expected.
Project background: The project owner has purchased an unconditioned warehouse with the intent to convert it 100% into a school. Approximately 92% of the existing walls will be thermally modified to improve energy performance.
According to Table G3.1(5)(Baseline Building PerformanceBaseline building performance is the annual energy cost for a building design, used as a baseline for comparison with above-standard design.)(f.) Existing Buildings: "For existing building envelopes, the baseline building design shall reflect existing conditions prior to any revisions that are part of the scope of work being evaluated."
However, in the 90.1 User's Manual of this section (page G-17) it indicates this requirement is only applicable to existing buildings where an addition is being evaluated by the PRM.
Should the baseline building walls be modeled as the existing building construction or as steel framed according to Tables 5.5-1 through 5.5-8 of 90.1-2007?
In my opinion the baseline should be the Table 5.5-X values. While Table G3.1-5 (Baseline)(f) states that you should use the existing envelope, if you read the definitions a building envelope it separates conditioned spaces (or semi-conditioned) and the exterior (or unconditioned spaces). Since the warehouse was not conditioned in its "existing" state it is not technically a building envelope.
If I model a hydronic HVAC plant shall I consider in the proposed model the heat losses through the pipes? And in the baseline model?
Is modeling the pipes as adiabatic in both models incorrect?
And how shall I consider air ducts?
I read that there are mandatory provisions concerning these issues (par. 6.4 of ASHRAE 90.1-2007).
Heat losses through the pipe network is specifically EXCLUDED in the modelling protocal of ASHRAE 90.1-2007 Appx. G (excluded from both baseline and designcase models).
Ducts leakage and insulation are not covered by Appendix G. So we typically use the software defaults and model these issues identically in both models.
You are still required to meet the mandatory provisions in your design related to these issues.
The DES guideline (2010) allows us to model DES cooling plant with a COP of 4.4, which includes cooling towers and primary pumps. When we use this default efficiency, can we still apply a part-load curve? (something like 90.1 default curve) Or is it an average efficiency which already count for all part-load and full-load condition? (in which case we need to apply a flat curve to the cooling plant) Thanks.
It is an average efficiency so the curve is flat.
Now there is room for improvement code wise, eh?
Can you delete this comment? It was posted in the wrong forum
I just noted the following paragraph in the "Treatment of District or Campus Thermal Energy in LEED V2 and LEED 2009" document:
"LEED v2009 projects are not formally required to use this guidance at this time, but using it is highly recommended to help ensure a smooth LEED certification review. USGBC is working to incorporate this guidance into LEED v2009 more formally, but that process is not yet complete."
1) Is this true? I also noted in the latest Excel Table 1.4 (used to demonstrate compliance with this prerequisite), one has an option to select how the DES has been modeled (in the "General HVAC" tab). One can select ASHRAE 90.1-2007 Appendix G, or DESv2 Option 1, or DESv2 Option 2.
2) By selecting ASHRAE 90.1-2007, does this mean that my proposed scenario will also be based on ASHRAE 90.1 (same as the baseline scenario)? If this is the case, then a project will not be able to obtain savings in HVAC items, right?
1) yes the DES is optional.
2) Not that simple. In lieu of following DESv2, you can follow ASHRAE 90.1 2007 Appendix G modeling protocols, with or without ASHRAE 90.1 2007 addendums, e.g., addendum ai. If following ASHRAE 90.1 2007 district energy modeling protocols, without addenda, the heating source must be included in the energy models as purchased heat using identical energy rates in the baseline and proposed case energy models as indicated in ASHRAE 90.1 2007 Section G126.96.36.199, and the cooling energy must be modeled using purchased energy rates in the proposed case and the appropriate Appendix G baseline cooling system in the baseline case. If applying ASHRAE 90.1 2007 addendum ai, refer to ASHRAE 90.1 2007 addendum ai, Sections G188.8.131.52.1 through G184.108.40.206, for heating and cooling energy requirements. Note that any ASHRAE 90.1 2007 addenda implemented must be applied in whole and consistently across all LEED credits and prerequisites, and the submittal documentation must clearly indicate any addenda that have been applied to the project documentation. Also make sure to fully explain the modeling approach taken and do not assume that the reviewer can figure it out based on your input summary alone.
Depending on the approach there may be certain elements of the HVAC systems for which you would not be able to claim any savings.
Thanks Marcus, this whole District Energy thing is getting annoying; I never anticipated it would be that complex. I have a few more questions running through my head:
1) I’m looking at ASHRAE 90.1-2007 App G and the addendum ‘ai’. It appears to be similar to the DES guide, Option 1 (Streamlined, the building stand-alone scenario), in the sense of modelling purchased energy, probably with a couple of minor differences. Do you have a preference as to which one is simpler?
2) I was wondering what really happens when I model “purchased heat” by modelling a hot water meter. Will the software calculate the heating demand from my building at each hour, and “purchase” or “withdraw” the exact amount of required hot water from the hot water meter?
3) In this case, this “hot water meter” is acting as a boiler. Will the software assume that the building can use as much water as required (so the heating source is always available to provide whatever amount of energy required by the building at all times)?
4) The hot water meter has a parameter called “source-to-site efficiency”. Do I need to enter the efficiencies from Tables 6.4 (Mandatory Provisions) of ASHRAE 90.1 for the baseline scenario, and whatever the heating efficiency is for the proposed district heating?
5) In my proposed scenario, the hot water pumps are located in the campus plant (outside the building perimeter). Do I need to add these pumps to my hot water loops, or do I need to add them as direct loads on the electricity utility meter (& assume a logical operation schedule)?
6) I'm assuming the same answers apply to Purchased Chilled Water when following ASHRAE 90.1-2007 Addendum 'ai'.
You input is much appreciated – the thing is that there is no 100% complete & clear guide / manual to help people proceed step-by-step, so we have to resort to LEED forums, modelling software forums, “dissect” through ASHRAE standards / LEED publications, etc.
1) they are basically identical
2) sounds right
3) The hot water is simply treated as an energy source. For the Baseline it would be auto-calculated. For the Proposed it is based on the design.
4) If you model purchased energy you do not enter an efficiency or conversion factor.
5) The central plant pumps are not taken into account if modeling purchased energy.
The forums are nothing more than free consultants. You could hire one who could help you get up the learning curve easier. In this case you only need ASHRAE 90.1-2007 plus addenda and the DES v2. Learning curve for anything new and somewhat complex is always steep, especially by yourself.
This was posed in another spot on LEEDuser and I thought it was worth asking here. Is there a rule to use initial vs. long term R-values? You can potentially get more LEED credit by claiming R-7/inch for polyiso roof, but R-5.7 is a safer long-term design model choice.
The aged R-value should be used. Typically I have seen the aged R-value of polyiso to be about 6.0/inch.
We are working on an industrial building which has 3 hangars which are occupied during working hours and its partly open and 24 hours natural ventilated. How should we address this building related to EAp2, as I can’t use cooling or heating for proposed or baseline due to the permanent openings? The energy performance has to be achieved only for those systems that will be provided by the owner as the hvac in the other rooms and the lighting system, in this case?
If the space is not conditioned in the proposed case then it does not require heating or cooling in the baseline case. The energy performance has to be achieved by comparing the proposed project as designed with the Appendix G baseline.
Yes, but then I will have not enough energy reduction to achieve the minimum required for Prerequisite 2 of minimum energy performance, as most part of the building is natural ventilated and will not have any hvac system installed. Is it possible to take credit on natural ventilation as efficient measure as I am reducing the use of air-conditioning? If so, should I do it trough the exception calculation method?
Thank you for your answer!
Sounds like you need to figure out how to get additional savings from the systems being installed.
You can claim savings for natural ventilation and it would be an exceptional calculation. See Appendix D of the Advanced Energy Modeling Guide for LEED. You will need to demonstrate that the natural ventilation will deliver similar comfort conditions to a mechanically cooled space and use software that can model natural ventilation (many cannot do so).
Even if you can do all of that I certainly would be highly skeptical of such a claim for a space which is not even fully enclosed. You would also have to justify any attempt to condition a space open to the outdoors.
This is IMO one of the trickiest areas in the system, i.e. conditioned areas that are open to the outdoors. Probably, it is the intent of USGBC to change industry trends for the better, so such areas should in principle seriously disadvantage the project from attaining LEED certification.
Possibly, you could argue that the conditioning system serving the non-enclosed area is per say excluded from the scope of the 90.1 standard and should therefore be considered process loads on the system. In your case, you're stuck again with the problem that when almost the whole project energy is process, then you have very little "pie" left to gain efficiency advantages against the baseline. And prooving a process baseline would be neigh impossible, so having a different process load compared to the baseline is also a no go.
Your suggestion to try showing a net energy savings from "natural ventilation", is a valid path, but it is probably more likely to show an enery wasting than an energy saving (this is the very reason why it is steared away from in all but the most ideal climates). Even properly designed natural systems have a hard time meeting both comfort and energy saving criteria.
If this is a new construction, you should talk to the architect about standard 90.1 and don't forget about the vestibule requirements. Perhaps, they can make it a properly enclosed area.
Sould all kind of elevator motors comply with the requirements of Chapter 10. Other Equipment, ASHRAE 90.1-2007?
*TABLE 10.8 Minimum Nominal Efficiency for General Purpose Design A and Design B Motors.
Is there any other information source / regulation that should be taken into account?
Thanks a lot for your feedback,
Technically yes they should comply as this is a mandatory provision.
However, since elevators are a process load and as long as you are not claiming any energy savings the motor efficiency does not really matter. US projects have to comply by law. International projects could certainly run into an issue. I do not think that non-compliance with this provision for an elevator would prevent the project from being able to earn LEED certification.
For the baseline building, does the REHEAT energy source for 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 need to be identical to the proposed reheat source, or is it as per the main heating source?
For example, my proposed system is a VAV with diesel boilers for space heating. The VAV is also equipped with Electrical Reheat boxes in each zone.
For my baseline, System #7 applies. The baseline heating system is therefore a fuel boiler, but what about the baseline reheat? Does it have to be similar to the baseline principal space heating source (i.e., Hot Water Reheat), or can it be similar to the proposed reheat source (i.e., Electrical Reheat)?
You have a hybrid system so it comes under the fossil fuel column. The reheat in a system 7 must come from the boiler system. There is no electric heat in this baseline.
Forgive my ignorance, but I am not familiar with plumbing design. I need to calculate the domestic hot water usage as part of the energy model in EAp2. Is there a guide somewhere that explains how to estimate the annual hot water usage? I need a tutorial.
FYI I am using HAP for the energy modeling so I need to calculate this outside of the software.
There is a calculator for this within the new Table 1.4 (Dec 2012) spreadsheet you can download from LEED Online or the USGBC web site - http://www.usgbc.org/resources/eap2-section-14-tables-new-all-bdampc-pro...
Some of the assumptions used typically come from the ASHRAE HVAC Applications Handbook. It looks like Chapter 50 in the 2011 version.
There is also an example in the Advanced Energy Modeling Guide for LEED but it contains an error (do not assume 100% hot water for most applications). Also make sure that your assumptions are in alignment with the calculations for WEp1 as the reviewer check that for consistency.
Ok so looking over the Service Water Heating section of Table 1.4, it says the Service Hot Water Fixtures calculator (middle of the page) is only required if showing a savings between the baseline case and the proposed case. It seems the calculator only calculates the savings and not the actual usage. It looks like you still have to figure out outside of the spreadsheet how much hot water is to be used for either the baseline or proposed case.
Does the Advanced Energy Modeling Guide For LEED show you step by step how to go about calculating the actual water usage, not just the savings for low flow fixtures?
Sounds like you need the peak hot water demand for the project? When modeling you typically enter the peak demand, the hot water equipment and then schedule it. From those values comes the annual hot water energy usage.
The annual water usage is something different and is estimated by the calculations for WEp1. For those fixtures using hot water a common assumption it that 50% of the total water use is hot water but this can vary depending on the system.
This may not be of much help but as energy modelers for the project we will request the peak hot water demand from the project's plumbing engineer. They have to calculate it to size the equipment. Even if you calculate it yourself it must be coordinated to make sure it reflects the actual design value.
Some guidance is in Chapter 50 that I referenced above.
I am sure ASPE has some documents that outline the calculations - http://aspe.org/
Many engineers use rules of thumb and sizing charts provided by the hot water heating equipment manufacturers.
The Advanced Energy Modeling Guide does not show water usage calculations.
Thanks for the advice. I think I know where to take this now. Much appreciated.
I am working on LEED ratail project for EAp2 option 1. Do we need to alway fill out the process equipment data including cooking, hood, refrig in the "LEED Retail Table 1-4 Process Efficiency Measures" as required by the LEED NC retail template? In my case, I will not claim any saving from all process equipment (process energy of baseline and proposed will be identical). Such table is very hard to fill out and would be nice if not require to be submitted. Can anyone guide me?
Yes if you project contains any of the equipment listed in the question. It is not only for claiming savings but also serves as an input summary for the modeling of this equipment.
What happen if some of the equipement do not have the data to pass the "Prescriptive Criteria". Some equipments were made local and have no data such as efficiency.
What if I just list all the equipement and did not try to get any claimed saving. For example, in Table 1, select "No" in the "prescriprive criteria met" role and select "manual calcuation" for bote baseline and proposed of "energy calculation methodology". Will this OK with EAp2 requirement?
I would think that as long as you model the equipment identically and provide a good summary of what you have modeled (with specifics) it should be acceptable.
Thank so much.
EAp2-3 section 1.4 table provided by LEED, under the Air-Side HAV Details.
Cell C26 indicates "Sum of fan power for all supply, return, relief, and exhaust fans cannot exceed G220.127.116.11 system fan power allowance calculated using supply cfm". However, I don't see or think ASHRAE 90.1 is limiting the fan powered only to the supply fan cfm. Please let me know your thoughts on this.
The statement is correct. The total baseline fan power is calculated using the supply cfm for the baseline system according the G18.104.22.168. There are other inputs, like the pressure drop adjustments, into the calculations but it always starts with the supply cfm. The total fan power is then distributed among the baseline system fans, typically in similar proportion to the proposed system if applicable.
We would like to ask something regarding a comment from a reviewer for EAc1, this is a rather vague comment in our view. Our project consist of around 5 buildings connected through a ground water loop supplied by a well, the cooling/heating process occur at a project scale not a campus scale. The reviewer said:
"It appears from the description in the Commissioning Report provided in EAp1: Fundamental Commissioning that a campus energy source is used for the Proposed Case building heating and cooling. Note that all New Construction, Schools, Core and Shell, and Commercial Interiors projects registered with the USGBC on or after 05/28/2008, and using district thermal energy, are required to follow the guidance of the document "Required Treatment of District Thermal Energy in LEED?NC version 2.2 and LEED for Schools, version 1.0" (DES v1) dated May 28, 2008 which can be accessed at: www.usgbc.org/resources/des-district-energy-systems-guidance-v22-and-v20.... Optionally, in lieu of following the required version 1.0 guidance, the project may choose to follow the guidance of the document "Treatment of District or Campus Thermal Energy in LEED V2 and LEED 2009? Design and Construction" (DES v2) dated August 10, 2010 which can be accessed at: www.usgbc.org/resources/des-district-energy-systems-guidance-v22-and-v20.... If following version 1 of the District Thermal Energy guidance, please provide a Step 1 EAc1 template and supporting documentation if pursuing 2 points, or both a Step 1 and a Step 2 template and supporting documentation if pursuing more than 2 points, and provide sufficient information to show that the District Energy Requirements document has been appropriately applied to the project. If following version 2 of the District Thermal Energy guidance, please follow the requirements of either Option 1 or Option 2, as appropriate for your situation. The submitted LEED review documentation must clearly state which method, District Thermal Energy guidance v. 1.0 (DES v1 - May 2008) or District Thermal Energy guidance v. 2.0 (DES v2 - August 2010) was used".
The commissioning Report is not very clear on this, the Cx1. Commissioning (Cx) is the process of verifying and documenting that a building and all of its systems and assemblies are planned, designed, installed, tested, operated, and maintained to meet the owner's project requirements.
2. The process of checking the performance of a building against the owner's goals during design, construction, and occupancy. At a minimum, mechanical and electrical equipment are tested, although much more extensive testing may also be included. Agent does not say that a campus energy source is used for the Proposed Case, but it only says the ground water source well pumps (campus) are out of his/her scope (which by the way are not energy source in any way). Thus we cannot follow any of these guidances suggested since the cooling and heating are provided at a project level instead of a campus level , given that the groundwater is considered a thermal storage only in this case. Has anybody had any experience on this type of comment?
Is your project v2.2 or 2009? I just responded to the same post in the v2.2 EAc1 forum.
Hi! Many local LEED Consultants have the same doubt related to VRF Systems when modeling per ASHRAE 90.1-2007 and regarding mandatory provisions.
The first one is which is the system we must use as equivalent of VRF for the proposed building and the second one is do the Fan Motor of the Outdoor Units Compressors need to comply with the electric efficiencies per Table 10.8?. We know that single-phase motors are exempt but what about three-phase ones?. Thanks so much for your help.
Not sure if I am interpreting the first part of your question correctly so I will provide three answers.
If you mean which is the equivalent baseline system - The baseline system is always defined by G3.1.1. VRFs tend to be all electric systems so use the electric column in Table G3.1.1A. Depending on the area and number of floors it should be a System #4, #6 or #8.
If you mean how do we model a VRF system if the software does not do so explicitly - You should model VRF systems with software that can directly model those systems. If this is not possible you will need to use a published work around or provide a thorough narrative describing how you have modeled the system.
If you mean what is the mandatory VRF minimum efficiency since it is not in the 6.8.1 tables - Since it is not listed, technically there is no mandatory minimum. However, ASHRAE 90.1-2010 does list minimum efficiencies for these systems which could serve as a guide.
I would not be at all concerned about the fan motors in the outdoor units. These fans are not scrutinized for compliance with this mandatory provision.
Marcus, thanks so much! you have just answered all my questions and cleared all my doubts. I was already aware of ASHRAE 2010 requirements regading VRF so we will look forward for this standard in order to get ready for LEED v4.
You are quite welcome.
I’m going to model two buildings that are on the same site and are of the same owner. The owner wants to achieve the LEED certification for both. The buildings aren’t attached, i.e. there is no common surface. Four geothermal heat pumps are installed in a building (building A) and are connected with both buildings (building A and building B). They provide both heated water and chilled water.
Probably the buildings will be registered separately, i.e. the “Guide for Multiple Buildings and On-Campus Building Projects” won’t be applied. Do you think that applying it would be a better solution?
Shall I model two different models? If so, shall the heat pumps be modeled according to “Treatment of District or Campus Thermal Energy in LEED V2 and LEED 2009 – Design & Construction” both for the building B and for the building A?
Hi Francesco, I believe you have to model the buildings seperately (I can't exactly remember the information source). The common systems have a few options on how they may be handled, but I think Treatment of District or Campus Thermal Energy is a good start to check this out.
Hard to say which approach (campus or not) is best since there are other factors beyond energy modeling. Nothing prevents you from submitting two buildings within one submission if they share a common site.
Agree that you should do two models but you are not required to do so if it is one submission. Obviously you would need to do so if it is two separate submissions. DESv2 is always optional.
If a project retains existing mechanical systems, but the overall scope of the renovations meets the new construction threshold, are the baseline calcs based on code-minimum or should the project attempt to model the existing systems?
Our opinion is that you should model the existing mechanical identically. This is what the 90.1-2007 User's Manual states and is in alignment with the overall 90.1 approach to such issues (if you do not change the system you do not have to bring it up to code).
However, GBCI has indicated that the baseline mechanical systems should always be based on the Appendix G baseline since Table G3.1 does not explicitly state that the baseline should be modeled using the existing equipment.
We disagree but that is how the issue is being enforced for LEED projects.
In the newest version (v4) of the LEED forms and specifically on the form for this credit there are several required signatories, however, there isn't any information regarding of who is supposed to sign them. I remember that in the previous version (v3) of the LEED forms this information was provided next to the field where the team member is suppose to enter his initials. Are you having the same problem?
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EAc1 relies directly on the EAp2 documentation, and the strategies to earn the prerequisite are often similar to earning points under the credit.
Limits on interior and exterior light use can help in reducing energy loads.
Daylighting reduces demand on installation and use of lighting fixtures resulting in energy use. To full realize the energy benefits, contorl electrical lighting with daylight sensors.
Commissioning of energy-efficient building systems helps realize he operational benefits of the design.
Onsite renewable energy contributes to prerequisite achievement if pursuing energy modeling under Option 1.
The computer model developed for EAp2 – Option 1 is used in the M&V plan.
Do you know which LEED credits have the most LEED Interpretations and addenda, and which have none? The Missing Manual does. Check here first to see where you need to update yourself, and share the link with your team.
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