Lizzie Adams's blog

Controls, Co-gen and Cooling: Retrocommissioning at UC Santa Cruz

As part of the year-long PG&E Retrocommissioning class, the 20 or so participants and three teachers took a two-day field trip down to UC Santa Cruz. There are three aspects that make UC Santa Cruz a retrocommissioning dream location: a) the very invested and progressive facilities staff, b) the wide variety of complex systems on-site, and c) the campus-wide system interactions. As a bonus, UC Santa Cruz also has a gorgeous campus—small clusters of buildings hidden amongst soaring redwoods and cool, misty air.

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Retrocommissioning: The Class

For the past four months, I've spent a day a month at the Pacific Energy Center in an intensive retrocommissioning class. For those not familiar with retrocommissioning, it's essentially a treasure hunt for poorly performing systems in existing buildings. Identifying and fixing these "poor performers" can save energy, water and resources, as well as improve comfort. And the savings can be significant- typically between 5 and 20% of operating costs depending on the facility.

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A “Top Five Wish List” for every building project

What if every project we worked on committed to five things? "

This is the question I asked Katy while BARTing back from a meeting recently. The discussion that ensued was very nerdy and distracted us to the point where we ended on the wrong line. But this is what we decided on:

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CanPHI's Passive House North 2013 Conference

Our flights are booked and hotel is reserved for Vancouver- we can't wait and hope to see you there! The Canadian Passive House Institute (CanPHI) will host the first North American Passive House conference dedicated to cost-effective strategies for reducing building energy in cool climates. PASSIVE HOUSE NORTH 2013: Affordable energy efficiency for a changing climate will convene Sept. 27 and 28 at the Westin Bayshore in Vancouver, B.C.

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