Results of Minnesota’s Public Buildings Enhanced Energy Efficiency Program (PBEEEP)

In September 2009 the State of Minnesota allocated federal stimulus funds to an existing building commissioning program for public buildings. As a direct result all government owned buildings over 100,000 square feet were considered for the program, allowing the program to not only  help  the  state  achieve  its  energy  conservation  goals,  but  also  to  better  answer  two  key questions about  existing building commissioning:

  • What percentage of a total building population can be cost-effectively served?
  • What are the energy savings that can be expected from these efforts?

The  State  of  Minnesota’s  Public  Buildings  Enhanced  Energy  Efficiency  Program (PBEEEP) is modeled after other successful utility programs. PBEEEP seeks to transform the existing building commissioning market in Minnesota from an audit based approach to a data-based investigation.  

The distinctive features of PBEEEP are:  

  • high level of participation (75% of candidate buildings) 
  • long energy investigations (6-9 months for heating and cooling seasons)
  • limited to government owned buildings  
  • funded independently of any utility company 
  • providers with a wide range of prior experience  

Three hundred and seventy four (374) buildings containing over 31 million square feet located on 71 sites throughout the state applied.  Screening was used to identify buildings where an energy investigation would be cost effective.  Average calculated site energy savings were 10.8%.  The program divided the measures into those with paybacks of under 3 years and those of 3 to 15 years for financial planning reasons and to meet State statue. The number of buildings that are good candidates for successful existing building commissioning projects is lower than has  been  projected  in  other  studies  and  should  be  considered  both  by  policy  makers  and practitioners who need to manage expectations of their services.

Full report (PDF):
Results of Minnesota’s Public Buildings Enhanced Energy Efficiency Program