Energy efficiency markets have been transforming since the early 1990s as new, more efficient technologies have been developed and scaled. A great example of one of these market transformations is in lighting. Through different forms of strategic intervention, LEDs have become more affordable and the lighting market has been completely altered and improved. This strategy of intervention is now being extended to energy efficiency in commercial buildings and is changing the market in this sector.
The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) has identified the commercial building market as ripe for transformation to being more energy efficient. The ACEEE goes on to explain that this change in the commercial building market can be implemented through targeting:
- Professional practices
- Industrial Products
- Building Components
- Human Behavior
Strategic interventions in all four categories should help push the commercial building market into a more energy efficient future. Some approaches to strategic interventions incude performance specifications and incentives for suppliers, retailers and customers. In tandem with these approaches, standards and codes must be expanded and locked in which will set market baselines to measure against and track progress.
Smaller markets are also seeing promising changes in conjunction with the market for energy efficient buildings. These changing markets include:
- Smart Thermostats - Controlling heating and cooling in tandem based on many data-driven factors
- Zero-energy Buildings - It is now possible to achieve zero-energy buildings through both new construction and retrofitting existing buildings
- Strategic Energy Management - This market is already seeing an ongoing transformation as smart technologies have started to reduce the energy waste in commercial buildings, which is as high as 30%.
Market transformations are a long process with many barriers along the way, but the market for more energy efficient buildings should change for the better as technologies scale to a point where they can be widely implemented in a cost effective manner. Go here to read the ACEEE full report on market transformations in energy efficiency.