The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) has made $36 million available through two new initiatives that aim to increase the energy efficiency of New York’s commercial buildings — including office towers, universities, hospitals, and retail stores — which are some of the state’s biggest energy users. Combined, the energy efficiency initiatives are estimated to cut energy bills of participating buildings by more than $200 million over eight years.
The programs are expected to save as much energy as it takes to power and heat 64,000 homes, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by the equivalent of taking 51,000 cars off the road every year. The new strategies will encourage building owners and tenants to leverage the power of new technologies, real-time performance data, and more intelligent design of tenant spaces to drive energy efficiency and smarter energy use at larger scale.
Approximately $30 million is now available through NYSERDA for Real Time Energy Management. These funds will support the use of advanced technologies to help building owners fine-tune their building’s energy systems, identify capital projects to cut energy costs, and reduce operations and management costs by an expected 5 to 25 percent.
NYSERDA plans to make an additional $6 million available to building owners and their tenants this month to improve energy efficiency in leased office spaces, which typically consume between 40 to 60 percent of a building’s total energy use. Companies that design and build energy efficient office spaces for their employees can anticipate paying an average of 30 percent less for energy than they would pay in a typical office space. They also can expect their investment to pay for itself within five years while helping to meet their sustainability goals and attract workers.
By reducing energy use in commercial buildings, which account for 31 percent of all energy use in the state, these programs advance Governor Cuomo’s Reforming the Energy Vision (REV) to achieve a clean, resilient and affordable energy system for all New Yorkers.
“Businesses and building owners are thinking more and more about how they can use advanced technologies and sustainable business practices to increase energy efficiency and help protect the environment,” said New York State Chairman of Energy and Finance Richard Kauffman. “Driving energy efficiency in this sector is also a critical component of Governor Cuomo’s Reforming the Energy Vision strategy and a smart way to help New York meet its mandate for 50 percent of our electricity to come from renewable energy resources by 2030.”
NYSERDA-supported Real Time Energy Management systems will use comprehensive data monitoring and analytics to identify when, where, and how energy is being used in a building. Service providers will conduct in-depth analysis of energy usage data to help guide their customers’ operational and capital improvement decisions. As a result, NYSERDA expects that energy-efficient practices will be quickly implemented to maximize building performance and reduce energy expenditures on a daily basis.
“Under Governor Cuomo’s Reforming the Energy Vision, the state is focused on smart innovations like these to help New Yorkers reduce energy use and save money,” said John B. Rhodes, President and CEO, NYSERDA. “New York is committed to working with the commercial building sector to help tenants, building owners and managers integrate energy efficiency into core operations to improve buildings and help build a clean energy economy.”
Through the Real Time Energy Management program, NYSERDA will offset the costs of advanced technologies and energy monitoring services. Through the Commercial Tenant program, NYSERDA will offer cost-sharing to develop energy models and energy efficiency packages for tenant office spaces, as well as other tools and resources that allow tenants greater visibility and manageability of their energy consumption.
Both commercial efficiency programs are funded through the State’s Clean Energy Fund, a 10-year, $5.3 billion program to support clean energy market development and innovation and a major component of REV. The $36 million investments are part of a total investment of $72 million earmarked to improve the energy efficiency of New York’s commercial buildings over 10 years.