Investor value creation, utility stock prices and clean energy policy

If regulators want to steer utility investment toward renewable, sustainable resources, and away from carbon-emitting types, they can apply basic investor value creation concepts when implementing policy. The key consideration is the size of the gap between two rates of return. Read Steve Kihm’s blog post on this topic. Continue reading
High energy

Energy efficiency opportunities for homes with high usage

We conducted an in-depth study of 100 high energy consumption homes in Minnesota. The goal was to help conservation program managers better understand the factors contributing to high usage, quantify the energy savings potential associated with common conservation measures, and identify program strategies that could be used to effectively target those opportunities. Watch our three-part video series IN THIS PLAYLIST: Continue reading
Apartment building

Energy and rental housing: a Wisconsin characterization study

We also characterized Wisconsin’s rental sector based on a statewide sample of 180 rental properties, ranging from single-family rental homes to large apartment buildings. The study provided a statistically representative picture of building characteristics, appliances and equipment; benchmarked energy usage; assessed energy efficiency opportunities; and explored linkages between energy efficiency opportunities and knowledge, attitudes and behavior on the part of building tenants, owners and managers. Continue reading
Multi family

Minnesota multifamily rental characterization study

We characterized energy use in Minnesota’s multifamily sector and identified untapped energy efficiency opportunities. We also explored energy-related behaviors and attitudes of multifamily building owners and tenants. Our research team sampled 120 buildings across the state; gathered information from building owners and tenants through on-line and mail surveys; and evaluated the payback period of 25 common energy and water savings measures in multifamily housing. Continue reading
manufactured homes

Manufactured homes study

The manufactured home market offers an affordable housing option—and sometimes the only option—for many would-be homeowners. Residents of manufactured homes (also known as mobile homes) are more likely to be low-income than residents of other single-family homes, and energy costs may comprise a larger portion of their monthly expenses. Continue reading
Minnesota’s small commercial sector

Minnesota’s small commercial sector: a characterization study

In this work, Slipstream conducted primary and secondary research on the small commercial sector in Minnesota. The objective of this research is to provide insights on energy use and attitudes toward energy and to inform energy efficiency program designs that address barriers to participation. Watch our webinar recording. Continue reading
heating and cooling system study

Minnesota heating and cooling system study

We conducted research on residential heating and cooling systems in Minnesota homes to help improve installation and maintenance practices for furnaces, air conditioners, and heat pumps. Continue reading
Data center

Small embedded data centers in Wisconsin

View full infographic Small embedded data centers (SEDCs) are one of the fastest growing end uses of electrical energy in commercial buildings and are estimated to account for nearly one percent of the total electricity use in the U.S. By some accounts, as much as one third of this usage is unnecessary, but this premise has not been addressed by Focus on Energy programs or by most device manufacturers. Continue reading
Warehouse

Light level analysis in buildings: a market characterization study

On behalf of Focus on Energy’s Environmental and Economic Research and Development Program (EERD), Slipstream collected information from Wisconsin businesses on their light levels and associated lighting system characteristics. This information will help Focus on Energy address savings opportunities from optimizing light levels by identifying appropriate program offerings and resources. Continue reading
daylight controls

Commissioning for optimal savings from daylight controls

Proper commissioning can lead to energy savings—often 60% or more Daylighting control, or daylight harvesting, has become a common energy savings strategy in many sustainable building projects, but several barriers still prevent successful implementation of this strategy in mainstream construction. Considerable effort is expended in the architectural and lighting design of daylighting controls, with actual execution being an afterthought. Continue reading