ENERGY STAR-Certification is an aspiration for many Facilities Managers, and useful building asset management is key to keeping or reaching the certification in the future.
Obtain ENERGY STAR certifications demonstrates to the public that a facility has taken the steps necessary to ensure sustainability and superior guest experiences. However, eligibility for ENERGY STAR ratings is on the verge of evolving. On August 26, explains Edward Sullivan of FacilitiesNet, the EPA will release its new models to determine ENERGY Star scores. Since new models could jeopardize incentives and existing benefits for ENERGY STAR-certified buildings, as well as undermine building asset management initiatives, Facilities Managers need to understand a few things about the program and its future.
Future Regulations Threaten Existing ENERGY STAR-Rated Buildings
The ENERGY STAR certification program is a government-sponsored organization dedicated to reducing the carbon footprint of commercial enterprises and increasing productivity. Although multiple organizations have taken the steps necessary to implement ENERGY STAR-certified assets, the future of the ENERGY STAR program, including its tax breaks and financial incentives, is uncertain. Future regulations could result in the loss of these incentives, which appears to open capital for use in other parts of the building. However, Facilities Managers and stakeholders must not abandon sustainability goals due to changes in the ENERGY STAR program.
Building Asset Management Is Integral to Achieving and Maintaining ENERGY STAR Certification
Building asset management is the steppingstone to achieving and maintaining ENERGY STAR certification. Facilities Managers need to understand the energy efficiency of their facility assets, as well as all processes and activities taking place to maintain such assets. Since ENERGY STAR certification is also granted based on energy use, Facilities Managers need to implement systems and smart building platforms to track and maintain control over energy use. With uncertainty working behind the corner of the ENERGY STAR program, implementing these systems can help mitigate the risk involved in relying on incentive programs under the ENERGY STAR program.
How to Plan for Future Changes in ENERGY STAR Guidelines and Regulations
The only thing that is certain with the future of the ENERGY STAR program is that it will change. As a result, Facilities Managers need to take a few steps to plan for such changes, including:
- Retrofit facility assets, including those with existing ENERGY STAR ratings, to track and monitor energy consumption.
- Use big data analytics to identify trends and patterns in energy use and asset functions.
- Optimize system settings, as well as automating controls were possible, to reduce inconsistencies and variances in energy use.
- Stay informed of updates from the federal government and the Department of Energy relating to changes in the ENERGY STAR guidelines and regulations.
- Outsource energy management, and smart building solutions consider outsourcing energy management and intelligent building management to an expert third-party provider, like ENTOUCH.
Implement an Effective Building Asset Management Program Now
The future of the ENERGY STAR program is uncertain, but the need for robust energy management and smart building solutions is not. Facilities Managers need to implement effective building asset management programs now by retrofitting assets, using analytics, and automating facilities controls. This will provide a safeguard against an uncertain future. To learn more about how retrofitting your facility can help keep costs in check, visit ENTOUCH online today.