Net Zero Case Study: Bullitt Center – Green Materials

The Bullitt Center in Seattle, Washington, is one of the most self-sufficient buildings on the planet.  It is net zero energy and, after the water reuse system is approved by city authorities, net zero water.  Net zero means that the building uses the same amount as it creates or generates – it is self-sufficient.

Source: greenbuildingelements.com

>”[…]

Healthy Green Materials

The Living Building Challenge requires projects to avoid as many of the chemicals and substances that are found on the Red List as possible.  These substances have been recognized by government agencies, such as the US Environmental Protection Agency, the European Union Commission, and the State of California, as potentially harmful to human or animal life on Earth.  Not all of the substances can be avoided, though, due to the lack of availability of materials that do not contain them.

The Bullitt Center team avoided over 360 known chemicals on this list.  Some were easy to avoid, as alternatives were readily available.  The team also worked with suppliers to create products that met their requirements, changing the way the products were made and making them available to others.

Most plumbing valves, even those made of brass and bronze, contain up to 7% lead.  Lead free valves, with an allowable lead content of only 0.25%, were used in both the potable and non-potable water systems, including fire sprinklers.Phthalates are commonly used in PVC and other plastic products.  A high-performance water barrier company performed 6 months of research to develop a product that did not contain phthalates, just for the Bullitt Center project.  The new product has now replaced the original version going forward.  Dioxins are a by-product of the manufacture, combustion, and disposal of products containing chlorine, most notably PVC products.  Couplings for no-hub ductile iron pipe are commonly made with neoprene, which contains chlorine.  The team worked with the manufacturer to special order couplings made of EPDM (ethylene propylene diene monomer) rubber.  The electrician was able to find electrical wire not coated in PVC that met code standards.  The fiberglass insulation in the project is held together by a plant-based polymer, not the usual one that contains formaldehyde.

Certified Wood

The Bullitt Center is a wood-framed structure.  Because of its location and the importance of the timber industry in the Pacific Northwest, the project team decided this was the best choice for the project.  100% of the lumber in the building has been harvested from anForest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified source.  The project was also recognized as the only commercial project to receive the Forest Stewardship Council Project Certification, in recognition of responsible forest products use throughout the building.

Local Sourcing

Perhaps the greatest story about green materials and the Bullitt Center involves the curtain wall (window) system.  Due to the high performance needs of the project, only one product could be used, and it was only manufactured in Europe.  A Washington company partnered with the European manufacturer to gain the knowledge to manufacture and install the system in the US.   The Washington company flew their employees over to find out how to make and install the system, and a licensing agreement was reached.  Now this high performance system is available in the US for future projects to use.

[…]”<

See on Scoop.itGreen Building Design – Architecture & Engineering

Net Zero Building Nears Completion in Edmonton

the mosaic centre for conscious community and commerce is nearly ready for occupancy, which could make it the most northerly net-zero structure on the planet.

Source: www.journalofcommerce.com

>” […] The Edmonton centre’s designers and builders are hoping that others can learn from the project that sustainable design doesn’t have to be costly or time consuming – so much so that they have made the contract, calculations and drawings available to anyone.

The City of Edmonton said the Mosaic Centre will be the world’s most northerly commercial building to achieve net zero status, the city’s first designated LEED platinum building, the first in Alberta to be petal certified by the Living Building Challenge and Canada’s first triple bottom line commercial building.

Once completed, the new 30,000 square foot building will include  photovoltaic panels that will cover much of the roof.

It will also have LED lighting designed with a time-clock/daylight controller to meet minimum light levels and a geo-exchange system which will draw heat in winter and coolant in summer.

The 32 bore hole geothermal system reduced the size of the system by 40 kW, saving about $150,000.

It was built 25 per cent ahead of schedule and five per cent under budget.

HKA architect Vedran Skopac, who worked on the project, said it was done to prove to the industry that complex, sustainable buildings can be delivered on time, on budget and without animosity between the parties.

He said the key to this all started with using Integrated Project Delivery (IPD).

The model emphasizes collaboration at an early stage and encourages all the participants to use their talents and insights throughout the different stages for best results.

“It goes all the way down to the end of the line of the tradesmen,” Skopac said.

“We invested so much in designing the process, and training and making everyone a leader.”

Skopac said a major influence on designing the actual structure was creating collision spaces, or places where building residents would be forced to meet and interact.

Skopac also wanted to influence sustainable behavior, like making windows easy to operate and open rather than using air conditioning, and making natural light penetrate deep into the building rather than encourage residents to turn on lights. […]”<

See on Scoop.itGreen Building Design – Architecture & Engineering

Study Finds Global Opportunities for Improvements in Elevator Efficiency

1259707a-d405-4e90-9e4b-4b7660c1a1d0.jpgElevators and escalators make up 2 to 5 percent of the energy used in most buildings, but can reach as high as 50 percent during peak operational times. At 5 percent, that means the yearly energy consumption of U.S. elevators is approximately five times of that used in all of Washington D.C.

 

 

 

image source: http://www.thyssenkrupp.com/en/produkte/energieeffiziente-aufzugssysteme.html

Source: aceee.org

>”Chicago—More energy-efficient elevators can significantly reduce the costs of operating a building, but the information needed to help building owners identify the appropriate elevator system—and the savings associated with it—aren’t readily available, according to a new study published by a leading policy group. The study, by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy, was published with the support of UTC Building & Industrial Systems, the parent organization of Otis, the world’s largest manufacturer and maintainer of people-moving products.

[…] The technology exists today to reduce that consumption by 40 percent or more, especially by cutting energy use between trips, when an elevator is idle, according to the study. Some technologies have been found to reduce consumption by as much as 75 percent, but without a standard way to measure energy savings and a rating system to distinguish more efficient elevators, building owners may be unaware of the benefits of upgrading to a more efficient system or choosing a more efficient system for new construction.

“Enhanced visibility when it comes to elevator efficiency can help customers grasp the full value package of better controls, improved performance, reduced sound, and increased comfort,” said Harvey Sachs, ACEEE senior fellow, and the study’s lead author. Sameer Kwatra of ACEEE presented the study on Tuesday, January 27 at the 2015 American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) Winter Conference in Chicago.

The study lays out a framework for industry leaders to set common standards for measuring elevator efficiency. Those standards could lead to a rating system, such as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s ENERGY STAR® ratings already in place for heating, ventilating and air-conditioning systems, and many home appliances. Clear standards also could lead energy utilities and government agencies to offer incentives, such as rebates, for very efficient models. And building label programs, such as the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED® program, could include elevator efficiency as a factor in certifying buildings. Right now, the LEED program considers elevators a part of unregulated “process loads,” and there are no direct credits for installing more efficient systems.

“Owners see elevators as an extension of the building lobby — a way to include their personality and values in the building,” said John Mandyck, chief sustainability officer, UTC Building & Industrial Systems. “As consumers and tenants better understand and value the effects green buildings have on the health and productivity of inhabitants, clear standards for measuring elevator efficiency can provide a great opportunity to reduce operating costs and showcase the environmental attributes of a building.”

The report identified energy-efficient elevator technologies that can be included in building codes and factored in elevator rating and labeling systems. […]”<

See on Scoop.itGreen Building Design – Architecture & Engineering

Building Recommissioning: Recertifying To LEED Platinum EB+OM

The facilities management director for Armstrong World Industries shares insights into the company’s LEED Platinum recertification pursuit.

Source: facilityexecutive.com

>” […] Q: When the LEED recertification process began for the Armstrong Headquarters facility (Building 701), how did you and the rest of the team begin evaluating the status of the building, in terms of its readiness to be re-certified?

A: Since our initial certification in 2007, we had established specific policies/procedures to follow for the building.  We had these in place so it was more a matter of reviewing what information was needed and fine tuning some of our data processes.  We continue to utilize our building automation system (Johnson Controls Metasys) for controlling all of our building systems and collect much of our operational data through that system. During our performance period, we read our data points on a more frequent basis to understand if systems were operating as designed. If readings were off, metrics signaled a physical change to be made to improve operations and data.

One surprise to our team was our Energy Star score.  We realized we had some searching to do when we saw that our building score had dropped below the 90’s where it had been in 2012. However, to recertify and meet the prerequisite for the E&A category, our Energy Score needed to be 70, and we met that.

In short, our recommissioning process helped us pinpoint many opportunities for improving building operations.

Q: For the recertification, which systems or strategies were newly introduced to the facility?

A: As a building owner, you are always thinking about improving building operations along with budgeting dollars to make the changes. Items that were budgeted for 2014 that were included in our building recertification included: a new roof with an SRI (Solar Reflectance Index) of 78; LED lamp replacements in the lobby; and electrical sub-meters for building lighting.

One other item that was completed in 2010 after electrical deregulation was daylight housekeeping. We traditionally did our housekeeping from 5 pm to midnight. However, as we reviewed our electrical costs and determined a savings opportunity, we moved to daytime hours for cleaning. This saved Building 701 approximately $750 weekly in energy costs. We implemented daylight housekeeping across the entire corporate campus, saving the company $150,000 annually in energy costs.

Q: What is the most challenging aspect of running a LEED Platinum facility? And what is most rewarding?

A: The most challenging aspect of operating and maintaining a LEED- EBOM facility is making sure you have qualified and trained technicians to understand and manage the building operations.

The most rewarding aspect is meeting with customers and guests to discuss the sustainable characteristics of the building and thinking about what to budget for in the upcoming year to improve overall building operations and maintenance to reduce costs. […] “<

See on Scoop.itGreen Building Operations – Systems & Controls, Maintenance & Commissioning

Net-Zero Energy for Buildings – ASHRAE Engineering Design and Construction

Integration: Net-zero energy design

ASHRAE has a goal: net-zero energy for all new buildings by 2030. What do engineers need to know to achieve this goal on their projects?

Source: www.csemag.com

>”As net-zero energy and low-energy design projects become more prevalent, engineers must be prepared to collaborate with all members of a project team including architects, energy specialists, lighting designers, builders, and owners in order to accomplish net-zero energy goals with little to no cost premium. Is this possible today or will it take another 10 or more years to get there?

There are many examples of completed projects demonstrating that not only is this possible, but it has been done in all regions of the country using readily available building products and common construction methods. So what’s the secret? It’s all about the design.

Net-zero energy defined

The term “net-zero energy” is abundantly used, but a single universally accepted definition does not exist. In general terms, a net-zero energy building (NZEB) has greatly reduced energy needs achieved through design and energy efficiency, with the balance of energy supplied by renewable energy. In an effort to clarify the issue, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) published a paper in June 2006 titled “Zero Energy Buildings: A Critical Look at the Definition,” in which it defined the following four types of NZEBs:

Net Zero Site Energy: A site NZEB produces at least as much renewable energy as it uses in a year, when accounted for at the site.Net Zero Source Energy: A source NZEB produces (or purchases) at least as much renewable energy as it uses in a year, when accounted for at the source. Source energy refers to the primary energy used to extract, process, generate, and deliver the energy to the site. To calculate a building’s total source energy, imported and exported energy is multiplied by the appropriate site-to-source conversion multipliers based on the utility’s source energy type.Net Zero Energy Costs: In a cost NZEB, the amount of money the utility pays the building owner for the renewable energy the building exports to the grid is at least equal to the amount the owner pays the utility for the energy services and energy used over the year.Net Zero Energy Emissions: A net-zero emissions building produces (or purchases) enough emissions-free renewable energy to offset emissions from all energy used in the building annually. Carbon, nitrogen oxides, and sulfur oxides are common emissions that zero-energy buildings offset. To calculate a building’s total emissions, imported and exported energy is multiplied by the appropriate emission multipliers based on the utility’s emissions and on-site generation emissions (if there are any).

A subsequent paper was published by NREL in June 2010 titled “Net-Zero Energy Buildings: A Classification System Based on Renewable Energy Supply Options,” where four classifications of NZEBs were defined:

NZEB:A: Building generates and uses energy through a combination of energy efficiency and renewable energy (RE) collected within the building footprint.NZEB:B: Building generates and uses energy through a combination of energy efficiency, RE generated within the footprint, and RE generated within the site.NZEB:C: Building generates and uses energy through a combination of energy efficiency, RE generated within the footprint, RE generated within the site, and off-site renewable resources that are brought on site to produce energy.NZEB:D: Building uses the energy strategies described for NZEB:A, NZEB:B, and/or NZEB:C buildings, and also purchases certified off-site RE such as Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) from certified sources. […]

Integrated building design

Integrated building design is a process that promotes holistic collaboration of a project team during all phases of the project delivery and discourages the traditional sequential philosophy. According to ASHRAE, the purpose of the integrated design process is to use a collaborative team effort to prepare design and construction documents that result in an optimized project system solution that is responsive to the objectives defined for the project. […]

Commissioning is an important part of every project, and for NZEB projects the commissioning authority should be a member of the design team and involved throughout the design process. […]”<

See on Scoop.itGreen Building Design – Architecture & Engineering

Manufacturer’s Energy Efficient Heat Recovery Unit Runs High in Energy Awards

See on Scoop.itGreen Building Design – Architecture & Engineering

Vent-Axia has made the final shortlist in the prestigious Energy Awards 2013, which recognise and reward companies leading the way in reducing carbon emissions. Vent-Axia’s Lo-Carbon Kinetic Plus E…

Duane Tilden‘s insight:

>Consuming as little as 20W, the Kinetic Plus E only costs around £20 a year to run, offering 94% thermal efficiency and potentially recovering 10 or 20 times more energy than it costs to operate. This offers homeowners an attractive cost saving as we enter the winter months and rising fuel costs.<

See on kirhammond.wordpress.com

Integration: Net-zero energy design | Consulting-Specifying Engineer

See on Scoop.itGreen Building Design – Architecture & Engineering

-ASHRAE has a goal: net-zero energy for all new buildings by 2030. What do engineers need to know to achieve this goal on their projects?

Duane Tilden‘s insight:

>As net-zero energy and low-energy design projects become more prevalent, engineers must be prepared to collaborate with all members of a project team including architects, energy specialists, lighting designers, builders, and owners in order to accomplish net-zero energy goals with little to no cost premium. Is this possible today or will it take another 10 or more years to get there?

There are many examples of completed projects demonstrating that not only is this possible, but it has been done in all regions of the country using readily available building products and common construction methods. So what’s the secret? It’s all about the design.<

See on www.csemag.com

Wireless Transmission of Energy in Buildings – Building Automation

See on Scoop.itGreen Building Operations – Systems & Controls, Maintenance & Commissioning

Energy harvesting wireless technology becomes more attractive for OEMs as a basis technology for products and solutions that contribute to a building’s efficient energy management. The wireless modules gain their power from the surrounding environment…

Duane Tilden‘s insight:

>Energy harvesting technology enables batteryless automation devices and systems to make buildings more energy-efficient based on sustainable, resource-saving technologies that eliminate the need for batteries. […]

In a complex commercial building scenario, EnOcean Link can be implemented on a central device, like a control server, which controls the whole building, holds the automation intelligence, and can be physically located outside the building (in the cloud). Several gateways in the building record radio telegrams from thousands of distributed batteryless wireless sensors and relay receivers, and send back information or command data when needed. These gateways are connected to the control server by a backbone, which does not have to be based on EnOcean radio, or even be wireless. The middleware, located in the central unit, interprets all telegrams received by the gateways and provides them to the automation system.

High energy efficiency goals demand flexible automation systems for all kind of buildings that cover several areas. This particularly affects retrofit projects, where the intelligent control of energy consumption is the key factor for a building’s improved energy and carbon footprint. Energy harvesting wireless technology fulfills the demands for today’s and tomorrow’s automation and energy management systems. […]<

See on www.manufacturing.net

Integrating Building into the Smart Grid

See on Scoop.itGreen Building Design – Architecture & Engineering

It will take time to get from point A, today’s grid and building technologies and power markets to point B, a Smart Grid with intelligent buildings and transactive markets, but it can be done.

Duane Tilden‘s insight:

>Transactive energy will play a critical defining role in grid modernization and shaping the Smart Grid.  Buildings, as noted in last week’s article consume 40% of the nation’s energy.  And while building owners can justify purchase decisions on energy savings as well as sustainability values, there’s another crucial factor for building owners to invest in technologies that reduce energy use and deliver self-generation.  That reason is to address the increasing vulnerability of the electrical grid to momentary and sustained power outages to both natural and human causes.

Buildings and their occupants are impacted by grid-related power outages.  The negative impacts range from reduced work productivity and decreased occupant safety and health to reductions in lifestyle standards.  Just like real estate values are higher for green buildings with LEED recognition, in the future, buildings that are grid-hardened may command premium prices because they preserve delivery of services regardless of grid status.  It is a compelling new variable in value propositions for tenants and occupants.<

See on theenergycollective.com

WPL Publishing Schedules LEED Green Associate Exam Preparation Webinar Series

See on Scoop.itGreen Building Design – Architecture & Engineering

(PRWEB) May 18, 2013 WPL Publishing soon will kick off a four-part webinar series to help people prepare for the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Green Associate (LEED GA) exam.

Duane Tilden‘s insight:

The series, which will begin June 4 and end June 25, is intended to bridge the gaps between other exam preparation resources, such as the U.S. Green Building Council’s (USGBC) “Green Building & LEED Core Concepts Guide” and “LEED Green Associate Study Guide.” To register for the four-part series, entitled “LEED Green Associate Exam Preparation,” visit http://tinyurl.com/crfdy5m.

Read more: http://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/1254975#ixzz2TgoQsny8

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