Pike Research, a global consulting firm, has issued a new report noting that global revenues from building energy management systems are expected to rise almost 14 percent, year over year, through the end of the decade.
The term building energy management systems, or BEMS, refers to computer hardware or software systems which connect to, monitor, and regulate mechanicals like heating, air-conditioning, lighting and mainframes, or other operations that use energy. Building energy management systems can also be used to monitor water and other resource uses.
According to Pike, this means that actual revenues from BEMS are expected to reach slightly less than $6 billion by 2020 – a hefty sum even in what economists have predicted will be a “shrinking” economy. The information, available at no cost from a press release (and in-depth from a very costly report), highlights the expanding building energy management vertical within the building energy efficiency/LEED/EnergyStar marketplace.
LEED, or Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, is one metric construction engineers and building efficiency retrofit firms use to certify their structures. These certifications are based on different parameters whether the building is new or old, but come in four categories: Platinum, Gold, Silver and Certified.
Operated under the auspices of the U.S. Green Building Council, or USGBC, LEED ratings represent what some feel is the “best of the best” in terms of building sustainability, since they measure across a broad spectrum: site sustainability and feasibility, water use, energy use, sustainable materials use, indoor air quality, and innovation in design, and encourage both awareness of and education regarding “green” building initiatives.
Energy Star, a building energy efficiency rating program operating under the guidance of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, or EPA, and the U.S. Department of Energy, or DOE – and representing an offshoot of the Energy Star appliance energy efficiency certification program – is another system which builders and remodelers use to achieve “green” building status; that is, Energy Star-certified buildings use less energy, produce fewer greenhouse gas emissions, and are less expensive to operate.
Building efficiency and sustainability are gaining increasing exposure as a perfect storm of rising energy costs, reduced energy supplies, U.S. energy security and the environmental movement all converge, with the help of Information Technology (IT), to address issues never before so completely under the control of building managers.
Also known as Smart Grid innovations, or building automation, these IT innovations are helping to curb the vast amount of energy (18 percent of U.S. totals, according to the DOE) used by commercial buildings – an energy expenditure which was highlighted by President Obama in his 2011 budget proposal, which provided $28.4 billion for DOE policies, including mitigating environmental (climate) risk and maintaining national security.
Elsewhere, wireless sensor networks and software building energy management tools, being developed both in government laboratories and in private companies like Scientific Conservation, Inc. are also saving cash and energy in U.S. buildings, and this perfect storm couldn’t be happening at a more perfect time, given a decision by Obama to boost energy efficiency in government buildings by nearly $4 billion between 2012 and 2014.
Any opinion contained in this article is solely that of the writers, and does not necessarily shape or reflect the editorial opinions of Energy Boom. Energy Boom content is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be advice regarding the investment merits of, or a recommendation regarding the purchase or sale of, any security identified on, or linked through, this site.