Blog: Evaluating Energy Efficiency Project Performance

by Matthew Worth

Many stakeholders evaluating the merits of an energy efficiency project have concerns regarding savings uncertainty.  The historical performance of energy efficiency projects has varied from highly successful to woefully under-delivered.  Further complicating matters, many different approaches have been used in savings estimation, measurement, and “shared savings” arrangements.   
In this blog I’d like to share with you the approach that Noesis uses in helping our customers overcome the “savings uncertainty” associated with energy efficiency projects.  
Noesis is one of many players in the energy efficiency marketplace that is seeking to bring consistency, transparency and velocity to the energy retrofit market.  Noesis is a member of the Standards Working Group of the Investor Confidence Project, an initiative sponsored by the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF ICP).   In addition to contributing to the ongoing development of their protocols & tools, Noesis uses the EDF ICP in delivering Pro Project Services and Project Verification Services to its customers.   Using the EDF ICP Protocols establishes consistency and improves reliability in managing and evaluating energy project performance.   
The EDF ICP Energy Efficiency Performance Protocol (EEPP) is an amalgam of existing standards and best practices assembled in order to enable the management & underwriting of energy performance risk.   Encompassing five project processes, the ICP framework assembles existing technical standards & best practices into a standard protocol and sets minimum requirements for compliance. 
Environmental Defense Fund Investor Confidence Project Framework

When Noesis uses the EDF ICP Protocols in evaluating energy efficiency project performance, it employs the practices required by the Protocols such as:
Baselining processes are executed according to ASTM E2797 Building Energy Performance Assessment (BEPA).  
The baseline model’s CV(RMSE) and R2 meets compliance thresholds set by ASHRAE Guideline 14
Accurate weather data is obtained directly from over 6,000 NOAA weather stations on an automated basis
Savings calculations are executed according to ASHRAE Guideline 14
Performance measurement & verification is executed according to IPMVP Option C (whole building comparison).
As these processes are implemented for a project, the outputs are assembled into a standard set of documentation defined by the ICP Protocol.  Noesis deliverables such as the Noesis Project Appraisal and Noesis M&V Plan adhere to Protocol requirements while incorporating several unique Noesis attributes - such as financing quotes and cash flow analyses.  The services are delivered by a Noesis team of professionals with AEE certifications including CEM and CMVP. 
Noesis Project Appraisal

Why does Noesis perform all these steps?  How does it benefit the customer?   We recognize that savings uncertainty is a substantial barrier to getting energy projects approved.  By bringing rigorous process and technology to the market, Noesis plays the role of a trusted 3rd party that can be relied on to accurately and credibly evaluate the overall performance of an energy project.  Noesis aims to increase trust in the energy efficiency marketplace.  
If you’re encountering savings uncertainty barriers with your customers and you think that the Noesis approach could bring greater trust to the transaction, let us know.   Click here to find out more.