Building Behavioral Energy

What Is It?

Building-level behavior-based energy conservation initiatives have been implemented at a number of office buildings both in the United States and internationally. Many of these programs have included tenant competitions that sought to pit different firms within one building against one another to motivate energy savings activities. CBRE worked with building owners and tenants to implement a program that resulted in significant short-term energy savings. This program included public tracking of results, landlord-sponsored trainings, the formation of tenant green teams and a weekly monitoring program.

While these programs have been successful at showing reduced energy consumption, ensuring that they lead to long-term behavior change is critical. The proposed building behavior energy conservation pilot will include elements such as: measuring tenant-level energy consumption pre- and post-implementation, identifying target behaviors, developing staff training materials, assistance with the creation of green teams, developing, measuring and disclosing program metrics, and creating a competition or pledge program between building tenants. In order to ensure program effectiveness, the initiative will take a step-wise approach to sustainability-related behavior change over several months, or a preferred timeframe decided on by the pilot participant. Participants will be asked to make small, incremental changes that eventually lead to sustained and impactful behavior change.

Building Energy and Sustainability Focus Areas

  • Plug loads (i.e. printers, desktop computers, etc.)
  • Use of overhead vs. task lighting
  • Common area plug loads
  • Paper recycling
  • Printer/paper usage
  • Heating and cooling loads
  • [Others as identified by participants]

Participating Individuals and Staff

  • ABC Staff
  • Senior building management [Advisory role]
  • On-site building staff
  • Tenant sustainability leads
  • [Others as identified by participants]

Potential Behavior-based Conservation Activities to Be Explored

  • Weekend heating and cooling restrictions
  • Plug-load timers and/or other workspace energy demand options
  • Task lighting adoption
  • Encouraging stair usage over taking the elevator
  • Adjusting defaults settings on electronic devices (e.g. copiers,computers, etc.)
  • Adjusting default settings on kitchen appliances
  • [Other as identified by staff]

The ABC project team will meet with staff to further identify critical issues, develop a project implementation plan and create a timeline. A monitoring plan will also be developed.