Report Sites Opportunities & Challenges for Energy Efficiency Retrofits of Buildings Print
Written by Paul Nutcher   
Wednesday, 12 August 2009 17:58

There is a new report showing that the renovation of existing buildings is a growing market segment for manufacturers providing energy conversing materials and products. Just read this great reporting from the blog of Jeff McIntire-Strasburg in a post entitled: Building Efficiency Upgrades: The Best-Kept Secret in Washington? Check out his post at the following link or read an exert I've reposted below:

http://www.stumbleupon.com/s/#1vFwjI/www.sundancechannel.com/sunfiltered/2009/08/building-efficiency-upgrades-the-best-kept-secret-in-washington//

The report from the Center for American Progress and the Energy Future Coalition notes, retrofitting our built environment also faces a number of market hurdles, including:

  • A lack of information for consumers about energy consumption habits;
  • Misconceptions about the costs and options for retrofitting; and
  • High up-front costs for efficiency upgrades.

The report, titled Rebuilding America, argues that using stimulus funds to support efficiency and weatherization upgrades to existing buildings (which are responsible for about 40% of our total greenhouse gas emissions) could reap dividends on numerous fronts. A $500 billion investment from both public and private sectors aimed at retrofitting 50 million buildings by 2020 could “directly and indirectly generate approximately 625,000 sustained full-time jobs and save consumers $32 billion to $64 billion a year in energy costs, or $300 to $1,200 a year for individual families.”

Renewable technologies and green building practices definitely belong in the equation: they’re smart as well as sexy. Combining them with common-sense retrofits creates a true “win-win,” though: we get the best performance out of our existing building stock, prepare it for the eventual integration of renewables, and insure that, in decades to come, our built environment isn’t guzzling energy at unsustainable levels.

 

LEED for Existing Buildings, building energy efficiency, building retrofits, building energy upgrades, energy costs