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Building Commissioning: Innovation to Practice

In 1998, the U. S Department of Energy's National Strategy for Building Commissioning indicated that the development and deployment of building commissioning tools, methods, and practices in just 1% of all commercial buildings greater than 25,000 sq. ft. and 7% of all new buildings greater than 25,000 sq. ft. would save more than $50 million annually. Although a growing number of federal, state, and corporate building owners and trade allies recognize its benefits and agree that the technical potential for annual energy and cost savings is significantly greater than the conservative estimate highlighted above, building commissioning is far from "business as usual."

It is widely recognized that two significant barriers prevent the widespread uptake of commissioning: (1) the need for tools and technologies that standardize and simplify commissioning approaches and reduce implementation costs; and (2) uncertainty about the cost savings and other benefits.

To address these needs, the California Energy Commission (CEC) has teamed with the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), the Texas Engineering Experiment Station (TEES), the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL), and the Oregon Department of Energy (ODOE), to implement a National Association of State Energy Officials project in the Building Technologies area.

With funding provided through the State Technologies Advancement Collaborative (STAC), these five Program Cosponsors, in partnership with the Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance (NEEA) and the Iowa Energy Center, will co-fund, direct, and actively participate in a two-year, integrated research, development, initial deployment, and information dissemination (RDD&D) program. The program's six elements will be directed at overcoming owner and industry barriers to the adoption of building commissioning. Each program element will result in the development and initial market application of innovative, yet practical functional performance testing and diagnostic tools and training by commissioning agents and building owners in at least three of the following participating states: California, New York, Texas, Nebraska, Iowa, Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and Montana. The feedback obtained from these initial deployments in several states will be used to improve these commissioning products, obtain improved information about the benefits and costs of adopting these commissioning products and services, and expand the market awareness of the benefits of commissioning.

The Program Cosponsors have been awarded $999,229 in STAC funding for this two-year, high-impact program and will provide $1,228,078 (55%) in cash and in-kind co-funding support for this multi-state building commissioning RDD&D program.

The lead contact person for the program is Martha Brook, Program Manager, CEC, 916-654-4086, mbrook@energy.state.ca.us.


California Energy Commission
PIER - Buildings End-Use Efficiency Research
1516 9th Street, Mail Stop 43
Sacramento, CA 95814-5512
(916) 654-4581
Contact: Norman Bourassa
Email: njbouras@energy.state.ca.us


New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA)
Texas Engineering Experiment Station (TEES)
Oregon Dept. of Energy (ODOE)
University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL)
Iowa Energy Center (IEC)
Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance (NEEA)


Total project cost: $2,227,304
STAC-DOE portion: $999,229
Participant portion: $1,228,075

Project Profile

Final Report

� 2009 State Technologies Advancement Collaborative
Send comments, Questions or Suggestions to: dterry@naseo.org

Last Updated: 11/28/11