Net-Zero Buildings

It’s cheaper to save a kilowatt than it is to generate a kilowatt

architects and building operators have long said that energy efficiency is the key to lower energy costs.  It’s this reason that Pike Research, a well-known research company sees the market for Building Energy Management Systems (BEMS) growing faster and earlier than Net-Zero Buildings.

Net-Zero Buildings are built to generate at least the same amount of energy as they consume.  For commercial builders, there are certain incentives and benefits to building Net-Zero building but they aren’t free.  The latest numbers from the United States suggest that a Net-Zero Building cost approximately 6% more than a standard building.  Considering the savings opportunities, the payback seems to be reasonable.  Since commercial vacancy rates in the United States are at 16% (reference here), building operators would prefer to reduce their energy consumption instead of building new energy efficient buildings.  As we stated in an earlier post, it is always “greener” to retrofit an existing building than to build a new building, so it makes sense that BEMS are a cost effective and strategic way for building operators to lower energy costs.

Look for BEMS to continue to make an impact in the commercial energy efficiency sector in 2012 and beyond.

Thanks for reading.