An Energy Audit is a technical and financial report identifying building energy use patterns and recommending cost-effective and practical energy conservation investment opportunities. The energy audit report is a blueprint for an energy management program in one building or a group of buildings.
It is different from the Energy Analysis or Billing Analysis in that it looks beyond the meter, at the details of energy usage within a building.
Very simply, a high quality Energy Audit is the due diligence that should come before making significant energy management investments in buildings. ManagingEnergy includes a complete management system for ensuring that an Energy Audit Report is technically rigorous and financially reliable, and that it is created making effective use of available resources.
In the guideline document Procedures for Commercial Building Energy Audits, ASHRAE defines four levels of energy audit according to increasing levels of effort and reliability:
|•||Preliminary Energy Use Analysis|
|•||Level I - Walk-Through Analysis|
|•||Level II - Energy Survey and Analysis|
|•||Level III - Detailed Analysis of Capital-Intensive Modifications|
ManagingEnergy is fully compliant with ASHRAE procedures and includes tools to save time and money at all four levels of effort. An auditor working within the first two levels would use only a limited number of features. A team conducting Level II or Level III audits would be making full use of the ManagingEnergy service. Further, ManagingEnergy includes features such as life-cycle costing required to ensure that the audit is Investment Grade.
Energy Management is more than checking and analyzing invoices. ManagingEnergy is the only enterprise system that deals directly with energy-consuming building systems and facilitates the Energy Auditing process.
The creation of any good Level II or Level III Energy Audit requires a team of people with diverse skills. Even a highly experienced engineer is not likely to know everything necessary about all types of building systems. An individual may understand boilers very well, but not lighting systems or lease financing. Additionally, a highly skilled person should not be employed assembling photo logs or doing word processing when others can do these tasks less expensively. ManagingEnergy breaks down the required work into individual tasks, facilitating a teamwork approach among Owner staff, ManagingEnergy service provider staff, and local service providers. The various tasks are assigned to the most appropriate team members, with ManagingEnergy providing the central information storage and the checks needed for quality control.
Undertaken together, Energy Accounting and Energy Auditing form the foundation for the management and control of utility costs in buildings.