$19 Million to Improve U.S. Efficiency

THE U.S. Energy Department announced today it is investing $19 million to improve the efficiency in the nation’s homes, offices, schools, hospitals, restaurants and stores.

The projects will develop advanced building technologies that will help American consumers and businesses save money on their utility bills, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and create jobs.

Buildings are the largest energy consumer in the U.S. - accounting for more than 40% of the nation’s total energy demand and greenhouse emissions, and resulting in an annual energy bill totalling $430 billion. On average, nearly a third of this energy is wasted. It’s estimated that if the U.S. reduced energy use in buildings by 20%, the nation could save nearly $80 billion annually on energy bills.

Today’s 18 innovative projects will develop sensors and energy modelling tools to make our buildings smarter, reduce refrigerant leaks and improve the efficiency of heating, ventilation, air conditioning, and refrigeration (HVAC&R) systems, and produce a low-impact, gas-powered heat pump that can operate efficiently in colder climates. The projects will also support renewable energy market penetration through energy storage, pinpoint air leaks and reduce energy losses through the building envelope, and cut electricity use by transmitting sunlight to building interiors.

“Improving the efficiency of our nation’s buildings presents one of our best opportunities for cutting Americans’ energy bills and slashing greenhouse gas emissions,” said Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz. “These innovative technologies will make our buildings smarter, healthier, and more efficient, driving us toward our goal of reducing the energy use intensity of the U.S. buildings sector by 30% by 2030.”

Picture of Salinas office building by Brendel reproduced under CCL.

Friday 15th July 2016

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