Building Energy Use
What does it mean?
Building energy use measures the energy used for heating and cooling, hot water, and lighting, as well as general electricity use (computers, appliances, etc.). Building energy use can be costly in terms of both household budgets and environmental impact, so it is useful to compare the energy efficiency of buildings in each scenario. This is measured in terms of the amount of energy consumed per household or employee per year.
How is it measured?
The Residential Energy Consumption Survey from the US Energy Information Administration provides regional averages for residential energy use per household. The regional average is weighted for each development type based on household square footage. The Commercial Buildings Energy Consumption Survey provides regional averages for commercial energy use per employee, broken down by employment type. A weighted average is calculated for retail, office, and industrial. These assumptions for both housing and employment are applied at the building level and automatically aggregated to the scenario level for evaluation. The user is able to easily change assumptions to better calibrate results for their locality.