This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.

January 30, 2008

ASHRAE Publishes Energy Design Guide for K-12 School Buildings

The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air-Conditioning Engineers, Inc. (ASHRAE) has published a new energy design guide that can cut annual energy use in new K-12 school buildings by 30% or more. The publication features easy-to-follow recommendations for various climate zones and a series of case studies of actual school construction projects. It also includes suggestions for achieving green building energy credits, as well as supplemental strategies for achieving advanced energy savings beyond 30%. To encourage schools to follow the new design guide, ASHRAE and its partners recently sent free printed copies to 16,000 school boards throughout the United States. Paul Torcellini of DOE's National Renewable Energy Laboratory chaired the committee that prepared the new design guide. See the ASHRAE press release.

The new design guide for school buildings is part of the Advanced Energy Design Guide series, developed through a collaboration of ASHRAE, DOE, the American Institute of Architects, the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America, and the U.S. Green Building Council. In addition to schools, the series also includes design guides for small retail buildings and small office buildings, and an upcoming guide will address warehouses. The guides provide a sensible approach to easily achieve advanced levels of energy savings without having to resort to detailed calculations or analyses. They offer contractors and designers the tools needed for achieving a 30% energy savings compared to buildings that meet minimum energy efficiency requirements. And to encourage designers and builders to make full use of the guides, they are now available for free download on the ASHRAE Web site. See the ASHRAE press release and free download site.

ASHRAE has also published an updated version of its energy efficiency standard for buildings other than low-rise residential buildings. The new standard addresses advanced lighting technologies that use less power, resulting in lower electrical and cooling loads for new buildings. In addition, ASHRAE has published a new book on energy efficiency in data centers. The book lists a variety of best practices to minimize energy use in new and existing data centers. See the ASHRAE press releases on the publications for buildings and data centers.