Efficiency can be defined as the comparison of what is actually produced or performed with what can be achieved with the same consumption of resources.

Energy efficiency is often defined as achieving the same services with less energy. This definition grossly understates the power of energy efficiency to provide benefits beyond energy savings for society and for the economy.  Energy efficiency helps reduce energy costs, achieve a lower carbon footprint and meet environmental targets. All this while protecting our energy security through lower dependency on energy imports. Energy efficiency in buildings continues to improve, thanks to policy action and technological advances. Policies have focused primarily on the building envelope, rather than heating and cooling equipment. There is considerable potential to achieve further energy savings by establishing standards.  Efficiency improvements of 10% to 20% are possible in most countries from appliances, equipment and lighting products that are already commercially available. 

Water efficiency is the planned management of water to prevent waste, overuse, and exploitation of the resource. Effective water efficiency planning seeks to "do more with less" without sacrificing comfort or performance.  Water conservation technologies and strategies are often the most overlooked aspects of a whole-building design strategy. However, the planning for various water uses within a building is increasingly becoming a high priority. This is due to a number of reasons, namely that new and existing water resources are becoming increasingly scarce in a number of regions throughout the country; per capita water consumption is increasing annually; water and sewer rates have increased dramatically over the last decade (100–400%); and new water supply options are too costly or altogether unavailable—often resulting in stringent water use requirements in new construction applications. In addition, there is the increasing recognition of the water, energy, and O&M savings that can be realized through the implementation of water saving initiatives.


Energy Modeling Wizard - Tony Molinaro & Kim Shinn, TLC Engineering
A review of the newest Energy Code, along with a fun exercise to demonstrate the impact of your design decisions.

Combating Thermal Issues in Building Construction Utilizing Structural Steel - Brian Ward, American Institute of Steel Construction
As buildings become tighter and more insulated, it becomes increasingly important to address the issue of thermal steel bridging and practical solutions.

High Performance Glazing Systems - Stirling Morris, Sierra Pacific Windows
Overview of curtain wall systems and their design characteristics.

Energy Efficient Lighting - Marc Migliazzo, EIS Lighting
Determining the right light for the task, lighting controls and outdoor lighting.

Daylighting - Jefferey Knox, Schuler Shook
Designing optimum daylight delivery systems to reduce energy consumption while contributing to occupant comfort.

Introduction to Dynamic Glass - Steve Bright, Sage Glass
Dynamic glass gives architects a new tool to deliver buildings that are more energy efficient, comfortable and responsive to building occupants.