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UW IDL shares research at ACEEE summer conference

The University of Washington’s (UW) Integrated Design Lab (IDL) was recently selected to present its research at the 2016 ACEEE Summer Study on Energy Efficiency in Buildings. On behalf of the UW IDL and collaborators, Christopher Meek, IDL Director, and Julie Kriegh, Principal of Kriegh Architects, attended the biennial conference in Pacific Grove, CA, which brought together building, utilities, design, government, nonprofit, academic and business professionals from around the world to discuss the climatic impacts of buildings, and technologies and strategies for reducing building energy use.

Meek and Kriegh presented three research papers, including a campus pilot study supported by the UW Sustainability Office. The study applied a Building User Audit Procedure (BUAP) tool on the UW campus to account for the cultural and behavioral factors that influence building energy efficiency. The study found that UW campus occupants (students, faculty, and staff) are a considerable source of energy use; however, they are well-positioned to and interested in making pro-environmental choices that would significantly reduce energy consumption. This highlights the importance of providing building occupants with targeted resources and tools in order to encourage daily, actionable behaviors that positively impact climate change.

Other studies presented drew upon UW IDL’s ongoing monitoring and evaluation of energy performance and occupant behavior data from the Bullitt Center, a high performance commercial building known as the greenest office building in the world. The research papers investigated two topics: the application of a pilot pay-for-performance structure (the Metered Energy Efficiency Transaction System or ‘MEETS’) at the Bullitt Center; and how the design of a building can promote occupant-behavior-driven energy savings. The culmination of this research provides an evidence-base for constructing the highest performing built environments, which will play a key role in positively impacting human and environmental health in years to come.

As current tenants in the Bullitt Center, the UW IDL has been actively involved with the building since providing daylighting analysis and advisory services to the design team in 2011. Operating out of the Department of Architecture’s Center for Integrated Design, the UW IDL applies research, technical assistance, and works with the Discovery Commons to provide education and outreach in order to show what’s possible in building sustainable urban environments.

Research presented at the ACEEE Summer Study was supported by the Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance (NEEA) , the Bullitt Foundation, and the University of Washington Sustainability Office.

Please contact UW IDL Program Manager Tina Dilegge for questions or comments.