Going the distance: Sustained energy burden reduction through energy efficiency

This paper presents an energy burden framework and its application by Avista Utilities. Energy burden is an indicator of energy affordability and insecurity. SBW is proud to have contributed to the paper and be helping reduce energy burdens for Avista customers. We have delivered the Multifamily Direct Install program in Avista’s Washington and Idaho service territories since 2018. In Washington, 77% of program participants are low-income, even though this is not an explicitly “low-income” program, and 26% of program participants are energy burdened. This program demonstrates that market segmentation can effectively reach high-burdened customers.

Authors: Hassan Shaban, Empower Dataworks, Ryan Finesilver, Avista Utilities, Bing Tso, SBW Consulting

  • Paper presentation Mon, Aug 22 10:30-12 (Panel 2, Session 2) in meeting room Kiln

Help! COVID Ate My Program Savings!

This paper presents a tool developed by SBW engineers in close collaboration with Puget Sound Energy (PSE) for identifying non-routine events in commercial building energy use and quantifying appropriate non-routine adjustments. PSE is using the tool to adjust for the impact of the COVID pandemic on participants in PSE’s Commercial Strategic Energy Management program. The tool applies methods outlined in the IPMVP Application Guide on Non-Routine Events and Adjustments. Tools such as these will build confidence in energy savings estimates as more performance-based programs come online seeking to support the transition to net zero energy, carbon-neutral buildings.

Authors: Faith DeBolt, Dan Bertini, Erin Wenger, SBW Consulting, Max Rennie Puget Sound Energy

  • Paper presentation Wed, Aug 24 10:30-12 (Panel 8, Session 2) in meeting room Dolphin

Is simple better: can programs get more done by simplifying calculations?

This paper explores whether less expensive; simplified models can be used to estimate savings for custom industrial efficiency projects and yield sufficiently accurate estimates of energy savings. SBW engineers estimated first-year savings for 40 randomly selected projects using simplified models and models that conform to best M&V practices. For example, simplified bin models were compared to hourly models with equipment-specific efficiency curves in estimating savings for VSDs on compressed air systems. Comparable reliability was demonstrated for projects with savings up to 800,000 kWh per year. These simplified models may reduce program M&V costs and release more dollars to pay for efficiency improvements.

Authors: Santiago Rodríguez-Anderson, Justin Spencer, Apex Analytics, Philip Kelsven, Bonneville Power Administration (BPA), Tami Rasmussen, Evergreen Economics, Michael Baker, SBW Consulting

  • Paper presentation Mon, Aug 22 10:30-12 (Panel 9, Session 2) in meeting room Nautilus