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Home > By DEPARTMENTS > Buildings, Real Estate and Facilities > Green Building Practices for Sustainable Facilities > Energy Efficiency and Conservation for Facilities Management

Weatherization and Energy Efficiency ... Coming Again

High performance buildings with retrofit weatherization and energy efficiency by trained BPI professionals -- a 2011 initiative by DOE.

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BPI Professionals to use Workforce Guidelines

Workforce Guidelines for Home Energy Upgrades are designed to lay the groundwork for a strong, self-sustaining home energy efficiency retrofit industry.

DOE will encourage training organizations to use the Workforce Guidelines to help improve retrofit course curricula. DOE will also work with WAP, Recovery Act grantees, and other federal retrofit programs to put the guidelines into practice across the country.

The Workforce Guidelines include four components:

  • Job Task Analyses identify all of the steps a worker takes to complete an energy efficiency improvement in a home. Job tasks included are: energy auditor, installer/technician, crew chief, and quality assurance professional/inspector.
  • Essential Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities identify the minimum capabilities workers should have to perform high quality work.
  • Technical Standards Reference Guides are a list of referenced standards developed by industry standards development organizations such as BPI, which define the safety, materials, installation, and application standards relevant to home energy efficiency retrofits.
  • Standard Work Specifications for Energy Efficiency Residential Retrofits define the performance requirements for high quality work and the minimum conditions necessary to achieve the desired outcomes of a given energy efficiency retrofit measure.
“Because they hold a BPI certification, these professionals have demonstrated the high level of knowledge and expertise in this field that we seek in the public comment process,” reads EERE’s Nov. 9 invitation to BPI stakeholders.

Building Performance Institute

The Building Performance Institute is the nation’s premier building performance credentialing, quality assurance and national standards setting organization. BPI supports the development of a highly professional building performance industry through individual and organizational credentialing and a rigorous quality assurance program. BPI is approved by the American National Standards Institute as an accredited developer of American National Standards in:

  • Certification of individuals in building analyst, heating, AC/heat pump, shell/envelope and multi-family designations
  • Accreditation of contractors committed to delivering quality home performance improvements
  • Quality assurance to verify conformance with BPI Standards and provide feedback for continuing improvement
  • Affiliation of training organizations that deliver BPI services in their market
  • Open, transparent, consensus developed national technical standards based on sound building science

BPI, in cooperation with the building performance industry stakeholders, establishes a professional performance bar at a level appropriate to ensuring the consistent delivery of exceptional building performance services for those entrusting the BPI brand.

For more information on BPI go to bpi.org.

DOE Weatherization and Intergovernmental Program

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Weatherization and Intergovernmental Program provides grants, technical assistance, and information tools to states, local governments, community action agencies, utilities, Indian tribes, and overseas U.S. territories for their energy programs. These programs coordinate with national goals to reduce petroleum consumption and increase the energy efficiency of the U.S. economy. They aim at market transformation to reduce market barriers to the cost effective adoption of renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies.

BPI, as the nation’s premier building performance credentialing, quality assurance and national standards setting organization, worked closely with federal agencies, Weatherization Assistance Program practitioners and trainers, home performance contractors, building scientists and other stakeholders to help develop these preliminary national guidelines.

Home Energy Score

The Home Energy Score will help make energy efficiency easy and accessible to America's families by providing them with straightforward and reliable information about their homes' energy performance and specific, cost-effective energy efficiency improvements that will save them money on their monthly energy bills," said Secretary Chu.

Under this voluntary program, trained and certified contractors will use a standardized assessment tool developed by DOE and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory to quickly evaluate a home and generate useful, actionable information for homeowners or prospective homebuyers. With only about 40 inputs required, the Home Energy Scoring Tool lets a contractor evaluate a home's energy assets, like its heating and cooling systems, insulation levels and more, in generally less than an hour. That means a homeowner can see how their home's systems score, regardless of whether a particular homeowner takes long or short showers or keeps their thermostat set high or low. A Home Energy Score of 10 A score of "10" represents a home with excellent energy performance, while a "1" represents a home that will benefit from major energy upgrades. Along with the score, the homeowner will receive a list of recommendations for home energy upgrades and other useful tips. For each specific improvement, the estimated utility bill savings, payback period, and greenhouse gas emission reductions are included.

To see a sample copy of the Home Energy Score and get more information on how it is calculated, visit HomeEnergyScore.gov. View an example PDF (702 kb) of a score and recommendations.



Edited by Carolyn Allen, owner/editor of California Green Solutions
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