EnergyScoreCard Minnesota Pilot Project
EnergyScoreCards Minnesota was a multi-year effort to implement web-based energy and water benchmarking and tracking of multifamily buildings in Minnesota. The project aimed to demonstrate that engaging multifamily owners, property managers and tenants in actively managing energy use can lead to a measurable reduction in utility spending, energy and water consumption and carbon emissions. The program recruited over 550 Minnesota multifamily buildings (93 owners and property managers), and providing a benchmarking service for a treatment group (286 buildings) for two years.
The project was funded by Minnesota Department of Commerce, Division of Energy Resources (DER) Conservation Applied Research Program (CARD) grant, the Xcel Energy Emerging Technologies Grant Program, and a Multifamily Rental Energy Efficiency grant from Minnesota Housing. The team lead by Bright Power, included the Minnesota Green Communities, Center for Energy and Environment, and Minnesota Housing, in addition to the Center for Sustainable Building Research.
The study primary findings of the study are:
- Multifamily energy and water benchmarking is demonstrably feasible at scale in Minnesota.
- Statistically significant energy and water savings were found in master-metered buildings receiving the EnergyScoreCards service in comparison to a control group.
- Benchmarking was used by participants for many purposes beyond near term energy and water savings.
- Benchmarks for typical energy and water performance among Minnesota multifamily buildings were developed and can provide owners, program managers or policy-makers perspective on the potential for energy and water savings in their buildings, and how to target future efforts.
- A participant survey and Account Manager experience documents the importance of hands-on support as part of a benchmarking service.