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Excerpted from ForbesArticle by Ankit Mishra, July 13, 2020
Amid the Covid-19 outbreak, policymakers and scientists leveraged data insights to track and contain the virus in cities. As the economy begins to reopen, cities must continue to use data to not only monitor Covid-19 but also initiate a sustainable recovery from the Covid-19 crisis.As cities will play an integral part in achieving a sustainable recovery, they need to capitalise on three data-driven solutions to incorporate more clean energy into the grid system, optimise charging of electric vehicles, and reduce energy consumption in buildings. By doing so, countries will not only create highly skilled employment but also accelerate their transition towards a low-carbon economy.
According to C40 Cities, buildings account for roughly 50% of a city's total carbon emissions, and 70% in major cities like London, Los Angeles, and Paris. For cities to achieve sustainable growth and broader climate goals, they will have to look into innovative solutions to reduce their emissions from the building sector.It may not be new buildings that are a challenge for cities, but rather improving the energy efficiency in existing buildings.Data analytics is already being used in property technology solutions, including software, to track monthly energy use or the performance of individual equipment. Now, advanced AI and machine learning capabilities are unlocking even more possibilities for monitoring and optimising energy use in existing buildings. Carbon Lighthouse, an Energy Savings-as-a-Service company, uses AI-enabled data analytics to reduce emissions in commercial buildings by accurately measuring, analysing and modelling a building's exact energy usage. The results provide Carbon Lighthouse engineers with a better understanding of baseline energy use and, more importantly, uncover hidden energy inefficiencies based on that particular building's actual needs.
Brenden Millstein, CEO and Co-founder of Carbon Lighthouse, stated in an interview, "It's now possible to capture and analyse even deeper, more valuable data-sets that can provide more meaningful and actionable building insights."In commercial buildings, Mr. Millstein added that Carbon Lighthouse's patented CLUES® AI platform, "formulates models and scenarios to best optimise a building's energy use and reveal new, never-before-accessible energy reduction scenarios".In the face of Covid-19 and reopenings throughout the country, data about how buildings operate can inform more resilient commercial real estate strategies – for the short and long term. With occupant safety rightfully top of mind for building operators, many are overwhelmed by existing recommendations on their building's safety.Extensive recommendations to adjust a building's heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system could increase both energy costs and carbon emissions and may not even be effective in preventing the virus from spreading. To help facilitate and manage the reopenings of buildings, Mr. Millstein mentioned that Carbon Lighthouse's CLUES platform leverages "100 million square feet of building data to help clients take a more science-based approach, one anchored in real, dynamic building data."As a result, Carbon Lighthouse's clients are able to evaluate the true impact of Covid-related HVAC strategies on building operations, energy use and cost to help identify the best solutions for each building.
In the future, energy efficiency in buildings is going to become more critical with the growing focus on smart cities, which all include carbon emission regulations for buildings.
Most buildings in the United States were built before the Cold War. Thus, many aren't equipped to meet these upcoming regulations (i.e. Local Law 97 in New York) or the associated fines and tax penalties.Yet, with the right technologies and data insights, even older buildings can successfully monitor and manage their carbon emissions to meet or even exceed regulatory requirements for a more sustainable future.Read the full article here.