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Evaluation of Building Energy Performance Rating Protocols

This project for ASHRAE TC 7.6 Building Performance examined and analyzed current building energy rating protocols (benchmarking systems).  We identified 47 commercial protocols and 31 residential protocols with special emphasis on those that use ASHRAE products.  The technical basis of each protocol was described along with its scope of application of the methods.  Five protocols were selected for further evaluation:

  • ENERGY STAR for Buildings – Selected based on its widespread adoption.
  • LEED/LEED-EB – Selected based on its widespread adoption.
  • ARCH/CALARCH – Selected based on use of simple energy use intensity calculations.
  • BREEAM – Selected based on its widespread adoption.
  • EnergyPrism Benchmark Module – Selected based on its business focus.

The strengths and weaknesses of each method was evaluated including the level of market penetration and empiricism and vulnerability of the result to input data quality.  Data from 28 buildings was collected to analyze with each of the five protocols.