San Diego, CA, July 13, 2016 --(PR.com
)-- Brummitt Energy, an energy modeling company and expert in Zero Net Energy (ZNE) planning, has been selected by the County of San Diego’s Energy and Sustainability Program to provide energy modeling analysis for its buildings starting July 2016. The State of California has mandated that state agencies take measures towards achieving ZNE for at least half of their existing buildings by 2030. For the ZNE planning of the County’s portfolio of 1,000 buildings, Brummitt Energy will collaborate with the Center for Sustainable Energy.
Brummitt’s recommendations will help the County to find huge energy cost savings, for new and existing buildings, while reducing the strain on the state’s electrical grid and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. “The County of San Diego is really stepping up by beginning to implement ZNE for its new buildings, while planning for their whole portfolio. By starting now, they will enjoy the benefits sooner,” said Beth Brummitt, president of the company.
Zero Net Energy, or ZNE, occurs when the annual amount of energy produced by renewable energy is equal to the amount of energy consumed by the building. Working with the SDG&E Savings By Design program, in 2007, Brummitt Energy helped to develop the first ZNE Commercial Case Study in California.
One example of the County’s proactive ZNE approach is the new 13,500 square foot Alpine Library, which opened in May 2016. It is the first Zero Net Energy project built by the County of San Diego. Through thoughtful design and early energy modeling, the library’s energy consumption was cut nearly in half, while construction costs stayed within the project’s 10-million-dollar budget. The Alpine Library was a design-build (D-BE) project in which the architect and general contractor perform as a single entity. The team included C.W. Driver, Ferguson Pape Baldwin Architects (FPBA) and Manuel Oncina Architect. Brummitt Energy served as the County’s specialist for ZNE planning and modeling.
Brummitt prepared concept-modeling studies to identify the feasibility of the project to attain Zero Net Energy. The results gave the County the confidence to include ZNE in its Request for Proposal (RFP). It also assisted the D-BE team to understand what its energy targets and strategies would need to be prior to design, as well as provide appropriate roof space for the PV and solar water heating systems. The SDG&E Savings By Design program funded Brummitt’s initial pre-RFP ZNE feasibility modeling study.
In the final ZNE design, the project utilizes a solar panel system spanning its long south roof, angled to take advantage of the sun’s rays. The solar panels are expected to produce about 108,500 kWh per year. The library's windows also take the sun’s position into consideration, as many of them are located on the north-facing side, which allows more light with less heat gain and glare. Philip Pape, Executive Vice President of FPBA, recently stated, “With building construction and operations accounting for nearly half of the nation’s energy consumption…it is our professional responsibility to design buildings that not just respond to immediate needs of first generation users, but symbiotically connect with the global environment across a building’s lifespan.”
“Initial cost is important, but compared to the lifetime savings in energy consumption costs, it pales. By being a ZNE building, we are not increasing the demand on the existing electrical grid,” noted Andy Feth, P.E. and Project Director for C.W. Driver, who worked closely with Brummitt Energy throughout the construction process. Susan Freed, who is a project manager for the Energy & Sustainability Program for the county, believes “there’s a difference between whole-building modeling and merely modeling for code-compliance. The whole building energy modeling that Brummitt produced for the library shows how all the building’s components work together. And that’s how you reach ZNE in the smartest way.”
About Brummitt Energy Associates, Inc.
Brummitt Energy provides Energy Performance Planning for new and existing buildings. Their mission is to transform buildings to promote sustainable prosperity. Their proven process and expert energy modeling makes it easy for clients to make informed decisions about complex energy issues. An industry leader, the firm assists building owners, developers, architects, and general contractors on all facets of energy efficiency and performance for Zero Net Energy, LEED, tax and utility incentives, and state and federal energy codes. They have assisted more than 140 projects to achieve LEED certifications by the U.S. Green Building Council, over 60% of which are Platinum or Gold. Learn more about Brummitt Energy’s services and projects by visiting brummitt.com