Research on sustainable federal operations supports the implementation of sustainable policies and practices in the public sector. This work serves as a bridge between the technology development of Department of Energy’s National Laboratories and the operational needs of public sector.
Research activities involve many aspects of integrating sustainability into buildings and government practices, including technical assistance for sustainable building design, operations, and maintenance; project financing for sustainable facilities; institutional change in support of sustainability policy goals; and procurement of sustainable products. All of those activities are supported by our work on program and project evaluation, which analyzes overall program effectiveness while ensuring that each project meets its intended sustainability goals.
This work helps the public sector achieve the "triple bottom line" of economic, environmental, and societal benefit.
As the largest energy consumer in the United States, the federal government has both a tremendous opportunity and a clear responsibility to lead by example with smart energy management. By promoting energy efficiency and the use of renewable energy resources at federal sites, the Federal Energy Management Program helps agencies save energy, save taxpayer dollars, and demonstrate leadership with responsible, cleaner energy choices. EETD researchers provide technical consultation to assist FEMP in its work.
Measurement and Verification (M&V) is a critical element of an Energy Savings Performance Contract (ESPC). Typically, M&V decisions are made almost solely based on engineering judgment and experience, with little, if any, quantitative uncertainty analysis (QUA). This project explores the use of QUA methods such as Monte-Carlo simulation to assess savings uncertainty and thereby augment the M&V decision-making process in ESPCs. QUA is used in combination with heuristic knowledge, in order to obtain quantitative estimates of the savings uncertainty without the burden of a comprehensive bottoms-up QUA.
The approach was used to analyze the savings uncertainty in ESPCs for federal agencies. Results show that in some cases the QUA simply confirms intuitive or qualitative information, while in other cases, it provides insight that suggests revisiting the M&V plan. By providing quantitative uncertainty information, QUA can effectively augment the M&V decision-making process as well as the overall ESPC financial analysis.