Buildings account for approximately 36% of the United States’ total carbon emissions and building retrofits have great potential to reduce carbon emissions. As a part of a comprehensive research project funded by US National Science Foundation, the Science Foundation Ireland, and the Department for the Economy in Northern Ireland, our team has investigated the emission reduction potential of building retrofits in the next 30 years considering the era of increased renewable power generation. Based on our study, it is recommended that the retrofits of medium office buildings in the U.S. should focus on: 1) improving lighting and equipment efficiency; 2) locations with higher coal usage rate, and 3) buildings under the high renewable cost scenario.
This work has been published under the title “Long-term carbon emission reduction potential of building retrofits with dynamically changing electricity emission factors" in the journal Building and Environment. The full paper is available here.
The first author of this paper, Yingli Lou, is a Ph.D. student in the SBS lab, where her research focuses on large-scale building energy simulation and carbon emissions from buildings.
Congratulations to Yingli on publishing this paper!