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The Challenge of Choosing Energy Optimization Products


The market is full of energy optimization options for every available building system, vertical market, and price point. Energy optimization is about the smart use of energy, whereas energy efficiency focuses more on the reduction of energy use.

"Essentially it is overall utilizing energy in the most economical and beneficial form available for an organization," says Scott Offermann, managing director, critical operations manager, Cushman & Wakefield.

"Because technology is changing so rapidly and the industry knows there's a lot of opportunity here, there's a lot of people jumping into the business," says Nathan Mitten, manager of energy services, Kimco Realty. "And the challenge is really being able to identify the technologies, as well as the companies that can be trusted energy advisors. There are a lot of folks who want to make a quick sell."

The great variety of products and services to choose from, ever limited funds, and increasing demands for performance accountability when looking at energy optimization products and services, especially ones new to market, turn up the pressure for facility managers to make the right choice.

"One of the biggest concerns facility managers and energy managers have, especially with new products, is 'Is it going to do what I need it to do?'" says Offermann. If the product or service does not deliver, it could look very bad for the facility manager in the eyes of the organization, he says. Answering the "will it work?" question gets down to relying on the experience, knowledge and intuition of facility managers in assessing and evaluating products and services, Offermann says. And a lot of due diligence.

Today’s quick read comes from Naomi Millan, senior editor, Building Operating Management.

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