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In an increasingly competitive energy industry, the commercial new construction market will be an excellent target for bundled energy services. This report describes a method to evaluate the effect of bundled energy efficiency services on energy consumption. The method integrates on-site surveys with engineering analysis statistically calibrated to billing data and employs efficiency choice modeling to assess the impacts from new construction marketing programs. Such capabilities will provide utilities with the information they need to improve their new construction marketing programs.

Evaluating the performance of energy-related new construction marketing programs presents a difficult measurement problem. It is important that the evaluation method cost-effectively and reliably assess program impacts on the energy usage of new commercial buildings. The method must also provide information on the potential of the program to change customer behavior and be sufficiently flexible to address a wide range of performance issues.

  • To develop and demonstrate a prototype method for evaluating the performance impacts of new construction programs.
  • To estimate the achievements of two Pacific Northwest new construction programs in regard to electricity impacts and market penetration.

Investigators developed a hybrid approach to performance evaluation, involving the use of 1) on-site surveys and engineering analysis to produce initial estimates of energy use and savings; 2) billing data and statistical regression analysis to calibrate the engineering estimates to actual consumption data; 3) choice models to help determine how the program influences building practices; and 4) a research design that facilitates estimation of program penetration. The method was applied to variations of two efficiency programs, Energy Smart Design (ESD) and Design Excellence Award Program (DEAP), which were offered to the construction market by utilities in the Pacific Northwest, including Bonneville Power Administration, Idaho Power, Puget Power, Seattle City Light, and Tacoma Public Utilities. EPRI cosponsored this project with the above utilities.

This report describes a method for assessing the energy performance impacts of a commercial new construction efficiency marketing program. In a field demonstration of the method, the on-site surveys and engineering analyses were valuable in assessing the comprehensive energy efficiency levels of each building. Comparison of the efficiency levels across buildings using choice models proved a viable means of determining net program impacts. In addition, the development of energy use estimates under as-built and reference conditions provided an approach for calculating an efficiency index for each building and end use. The overall method had the added benefit of determining spillover and rebound effects.

In this demonstration, the use of bill comparisons or billing analysis was not effective for assessing the performance impacts of new construction programs. Controlling for building size and type fell short of the many factors that must be accounted for in a billing comparison. Billing data was, however, very useful in calibrating engineering models.

The ability to get involved at early phases of commercial construction and influence building construction practices has been a strategic asset for utilities. Performance measurement of new construction marketing programs provides valuable feedback on the results of such involvement, especially in a competitive business environment. While this study was conducted for demand-side management (DSM) programs, issues related to program effectiveness remain the same. Evaluation of utility programs--whether they are related to energy services, competitive positioning, or regulatory-driven DSM--they continue to be an important activity for making sound management decisions.

Related EPRI research includes Performance Impacts for Commercial Retrofit (TR-106923), Performance Impacts: Evaluation Methods for the Nonresidential Sector (TR-105845), Impact Evaluation of Demand-Side Management Programs (CU-7179, volumes 1-2), and Engineering Methods for Estimating the Impacts of Demand-Side Management Programs (TR-100984, volumes 1-3).


Market Research WO03539-01

Marketing EPRI Project Manager: Rich Gillman

Strategic market assessment Retail Market Tools & Services

Marketing program evaluation Customer Systems Group

Contractors: Xenergy Inc, Regional Economic Research, Inc


Architectural Engineering Corp.


Marketing EPRI Members: For ordering information

Demand-side management about this report, call the EPRI

Conservation Distribution Center (510) 934-4212

Load Management

Statistical analysis

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