The Association of Energy Engineers started in 1981 with the Certified Energy Managers (CEM) program. To date more than 14,000 professionals have been certified under AEE programs.
The Certified Sustainable Development Professional is the newest certification program developed by AEE. It is designed to provide recognition for professionals who have distinguished themselves as leaders in the sustainable development field and have demonstrated high levels of technical expertise in energy management and environmental practices.
Sustainable Development programs pioneered by AEE include both training and certification for buildings. For example Sustainable buildings must achieve acceptable indoor air quality and be properly commissioned. In 1993, the Certified Indoor Air Quality Professional (CIAQP) was initiated.
Today, indoor air quality is a major concern for existing buildings and a goal of most green building programs. In 2004, AEE introduced the Certified Building Commissioning Professional Program (CBCP). Building systems commissioning now has a component of Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) accreditation for both new and existing buildings.
In 2005, AEE launched its Green Building Engineer (GBE) program. According to Robert Sauchelli, national program manager, ENERGY STAR Service and Product Provider Program, “The establishment of the GBE will make it easier to identify individuals with acceptable knowledge of the principles and practices of energy efficiency and improved building energy performance. The Green Building Engineer certification, which requires professional engineers to have energy management certification, will be an important resource for building owners looking to validate their Statement of Energy Performance, to apply for the ENERGY STAR Label.”
According to Albert Thumann, executive director of AEE, “The Green Building Engineer is the only certification which meets the professional engineering requirement in most state. Green Building Engineers have also volunteered their time to help school systems get the ENERGY STAR label.”
Another Sustainable Development program is the Alternative and Renewable Energy Institute (AREDI) to address the growing need to bring green energy sources to market. The Institute is also a means to provide and distribute information concerning real world applications of alternative energy technologies and green energy sources to members and the marketplace. The AREDI newsletter keeps members up-to-date in this fast growing field.
According to Dr. Stephen Roosa, president of the Foundation of the Association of Energy Engineers, “During the past three decades, no other single professional non profit organization has done more to advance and promote the use of fundamental technologies that support sustainability efforts. Through periods of time when it simply was not in vogue to be energy efficient, the Association of Energy Engineers has been resolutely providing the tools, training and certification programs that provide essential skills that are needed”. The concerns of the AEE members are not just about hardware but also about the policies needed to implement the hardware solutions.