Simulation analysis suggests that electricity consumption can be reduced up to 40% in existing Florida homes. To test this theory, an all-electric home was located in Miami, Florida upon which to perform a variety of retrofits. The total annual electricity consumption in the one year base-line period preceding the study was 20,733 kWh. Detailed instrumentation and metering equipment was installed in May of 1 995 so that each energy end-use could be evaluated.
When the Home Laboratory of the Research Institute of Innovative Technology for the Earth (RITE) was constructed, the aim was to harmonise the building with its environment, while simultaneously integrating energy-saving measures. Moreover as this is an advanced technology research laboratory, it is very important to combine energy-saving measures, working environment and research functions through careful planning and design. These measures resulted in a 29% reduction in primary energy consumption and a 26.5% reduction in airconditioning load.
Surely, nobody has anything against the idea of a sustainable society. But how is it to be achieved? And what can we ourselves do when everybody else insists on taking their car to work? This is how people usually argue. People do not see any direct relationship between their own way of life and the way nature reacts. This has been tackled in Seattle on the western seaboard of the US. This is where the concept of sustainability factors was first tested within the built environment.
Windows are where we often look to improve the energy performance in old homes. But don't rip out those old sashes yet. A field study in Vermont suggests that "remove and replace" is not necessarily the way to go when it comes to old windows.
The objective of the RESET project was to quantify the savings that could be made by resetting the energy related controls of buildings to their original or optimum settings. The method was to identify a range of office buildings and carry out energy and management audits. Advice was given on incorrectly set controls, and estimates were made of the potential savings if the controls were set correctly. Cost savings of between 10% and 30% were almost always identified and could be made at little or no cost.