- Efficient Energy Efficiency Programs
Energy efficiency programs in the U.S. have generated significant energy use reductions in the last few decades but they can be more efficient. Sagewell can assist energy efficiency programs to become significantly more scalable, lower their costs and provide razor-sharp focus on meeting energy efficiency goals.
Prior to Sagewell, there was not a low-cost way to quickly create a custom-tailored energy efficiency improvement "recipe" for each home or commercial building without doing an in-building energy assessment. The cost of an in-building energy assessment often varies from $150 to $500. Traditional assessments result in improvements in only about 10% to 20% of the time depending on the program design. However, these low conversion figures are not an indicator of a problem with the programs. Rather, the low conversion rates reflect the self-selection bias of the people who request the energy assessments as well as the judicious use of cost effectiveness metrics by the energy efficiency programs.
Sagewell's research indicates that only about 10% to 15% of the people who request an energy assessment have excellent savings opportunities that meet energy efficiency program targets. In other words, up to 90% of the time, a person requesting an assessment owns a building that does not need the kinds of improvements the energy efficiency programs are designed to address. Sagewell can use its technology to obtain heat loss data on building envelopes at a rate of tens of thousands of buildings per day and then identify those buildings that are ideally suited to meet the energy efficiency program goals.
Sagewell's analysis indicates that 20 out of 100 buildings are notably energy inefficient and are strong candidates for energy efficiency retrofits. Five out of these 20 buildings are excellent retrofit candidates. Until Sagewell, there was not a cost-effective way to find these needles in the haystack. By proactively seeking the best candidate buildings, more of the program dollars will be directed towards savings-generating improvements rather than in-building energy assessments.
This information can be used to direct resources to those buildings that can achieve the greatest reduction in energy use with the least investment, thus allowing the creation of the most effective energy efficiency programs in the country.