New technologies are poised to track the many benefits of saving energy

Intelligent efficiency technologies such as learning thermostats and smart watches are making it easier to track and quantify the many benefits of saving energy. Fitness trackers are allowing researchers to evaluate the health benefits, new software apps are enabling building managers to check occupant comfort, and social media posts are helping utilities address resiliency concerns by assessing the scope of power outages.

Our new report, Use of Intelligent Efficiency to Collect and Analyze Nonenergy Benefits Information, explores how new technologies and Big Data can be used to analyze energy efficiency program benefits. These technologies reduce the time and expense of a robust cost-benefit analysis of a program’s nonenergy benefits (NEBs), and thus can attract additional program funding. By making energy efficiency more attractive, they can help boost energy savings for individuals, utilities, and society.

We examine how automated data collection and processing — enabled by smart devices, inexpensive sensors, networks, and cloud computing — can quantify how energy efficiency improves a range of attributes, such as worker productivity, building occupant health, and the environment. We show how such NEBs data can boost program marketing and customer relations.

Read More (American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy)