A net-zero energy building refers to a building that produces as much energy as it consumes, resulting in a net-zero balance in terms of annual energy usage. With estimates that the US wastes at least 61% of its energy, according to a 2013 analysis from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, it may seem impossible for a building to achieve net-zero energy status.
However, the Green Building Advisory Committee (GBAC) of the General Services Administration (GSA), the country’s largest landlord and owner of over 2% of all commercial real estate, recommended a net-zero policy in September 2014 that calls for over half of the GSA’s buildings to be net-zero energy by 2030. If this was accomplished, it is projected to result in:
- Reduction of 8 million metric tons of CO2 equivalent emissions
- Increase of over 500 MWh of renewable energy generated
This net-zero energy recommendation for buildings demonstrates that not only is significant energy reduction and renewable energy generation possible, but it is the wave of the near future. One simple way for buildings to get one step closer to net-zero energy status is through window improvements. If interior windows, in which an additional pane of glass is installed on the inside of existing windows, it would create an average energy savings of 20% annually.
Interior window systems are one of the more plausible energy efficiency upgrades, especially in regards to budgetary concerns. Thermolite’s interior window systems are:
- 50% less costly than replacing windows
- 90% less time-consuming to install – in fact, our Do-It-Yourself (DIY) curtain wall systems can be installed within 10 minutes.
The net-zero energy trend may be starting with federal government buildings, but it is possible to achieve in commercial buildings as well. As building owners face increasing pressure to make their facilities more efficient, windows are among the most affordable upgrades with the fastest ROI. Learn more about how Thermolite’s interior window systems could help your building achieve its energy reduction goals – contact us today.